The Impact Investor has a detailed interview with Leslie Christian of Upstream 21. Upstream is a holding company that "that acquires small, privately-owned firms in the Pacific Northwest and operates them, under very focused sustainability guidelines, as wholly-owned subsidiaries."
Leslie is also a manager in the Portfolio 21 fund, an excellent, large cap diversified eco-sensitive SRI mutual fund suitable for investors of all sizes.
The company's carefully articulated business philosophy is grounded in the view that, over the long term, the companies that will prosper will be those that are committed to fair wages and environmental and work-life quality. It is Upstream 21's belief that small local businesses, when properly managed, can operate leaner and with less resource waste than large, global ones. Management also takes the view that companies that have learned to internalize what have traditionally been considered the external costs of doing business will be better positioned to operate in a more regulated and resource-constrained economy. Upstream 21’s unique charter (its Articles of Incorporation) states that the company’s “best interests” will always be defined by, and aligned with, those of its employees, customers, suppliers, the environment and the communities in which it operates, as well as those of shareholders.
Upstream 21 currently owns three companies in the forest products sector: Jefferson State Forest Products, a manufacturer of retail display fixtures using sustainably harvested wood; Community Smallwood Solutions, a manufacturer of posts and poles for vineyards, orchards, hops farms, and fencing; and Roguewood Furniture, a maker of hardwood home furnishings.