The 2011 Heart of Green Award Winners

18 inspiring people, places, ideas and companies that are helping green go mainstream.

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18 Worthy Winners

The 2011 Heart of Green Awards honor breakthrough thinking and action that inspires green thinking among mainstream Americans — consistent with The Daily Green's mission of delivering "real green for real people."

And in its third year, the 2011 Heart of Green Awards were themselves a breakthrough; for the first time, we were able to invite our audience to vote for their favorite nominees in 18 categories, from best new park to lifetime achievement, from best beauty product to local hero. The result? Some consistency with the thinking of The Daily Green's editors (who, after all, would disagree that Jane Goodall, who just wrapped up her 50th year of wildlife conservation research, action and inspiration, deserves a lifetime achievement award?) but also some welcome diversity of opinion.

In truth, we consider each of our nominees deserving, and taken together — the nominees, the winners our editors selected and the People's Choice award winners — they represent a worthy cast of characters that should give us hope that, in this ongoing drama we're engaged in to protect, preserve and celebrate the Earth's resources, we have innovative allies, smart entrepreneurs and inspiring leaders on our side. As we enter Earth Month, we can feel confident that some very talented folks are fighting the good fight.

Congratulations to our winners. Now, let me introduce them...

— Dan Shapley, Senior Editor