Editorial Board   Guest Author

Ms. Bridges

Cerise Bridges

Certification Specialist, Green Seal

Cerise Bridges is a Chicago native with fifteen years of work at the intersection of hospitality and environmental protection. Currently a Certification Specialist for the nation's premier environmental standard developer and certifier, Green Seal®, her specialty for the last eight years has been assisting hotels, restaurants and cleaning services with implementing comprehensive sustainability improvements and evaluating their progress towards earning certification.

Since graduating from Howard University with a B.B.A in Hospitality Management and from American University with a M.A. in Environmental Policy, Ms. Bridges has served environmental organizations, large and small, in many capacities.  Her initiatives have included protecting city parks across the U.S. with The Trust for Public Land; conserving land and water in the Caribbean and Central America for The Nature Conservancy; training future environmental leaders at the Environmental Leadership Program; and now driving sustainability in the hospitality industry by facilitating Green Seal's hotel certification program. Ms. Bridges got her start in the hospitality industry working in the front of the house as a Concierge and Front Desk Associate at hotels in Washington, D.C. and Chicago, and has served as part of a management team for Aramark at a university food service operation in Washington, D.C. 

Ms. Bridges believes the hospitality industry is a microcosm of the greater community.  Given the sheer volume of daily purchases and resources used, it has the ability and -- more importantly -- the responsibility to reduce waste, increase energy efficiency, and limit water usage.  The implementation of even the most basic initiatives can benefit both our environment and the hotel's bottom line. 

Please visit http://www.greenseal.org for more information.

Ms. Bridges can be contacted at 202-872-6400 or cbridges@greenseal.org

Coming up in May 2020...

Eco-Friendly Practices: Creative Innovation

Being eco-friendly is no longer a fad. It is an urgent planetary need and hotels are actively doing their part to reduce their carbon footprint by implementing sustainable, green practices. In addition to the goodwill derived from doing the right thing, hotels are also realizing the benefits to their business. A large percentage of Millennials expect hotels to be eco-friendly and will only patronize those properties that are proudly conforming. Consequently, more hotels are realizing that sustainability is a key element in a successful branding strategy. In addition, going green can lead to a more profitable bottom line, as savings on electricity, water and cleaning materials can add up. Also, there are other advantages that come with being an eco-friendly business, such as government subsidies and tax and loan incentives. As a result, many hotels are finding innovative ways to integrate eco-friendly practices into their business. Geo-thermal energy systems, along with energy-from-waste systems, are being used to heat and cool the property. Passive solar panels, green roofs, natural lighting and natural ventilation strategies also assist in energy conservation. Low-flow water systems and plumbing fixtures make a contribution, as does eco-friendly hardwood flooring, and energy efficient televisions and appliances throughout the property. In addition, some hotels have implemented in-room recycling programs, and only provide all-natural, personal care items. One hotel has actually constructed a bee-keeping operation on their grounds. Not only is this good for the bees but the hotel also produces products from the operation which they sell. This kind of creative innovation also holds enormous appeal to guests. The May issue of the Hotel Business Review will document what some hotels are doing to integrate sustainable practices into their operations and how they are benefiting from them.