Friday, March 27, 2015

Guest Blog: Constellation Energy

How Do I Prove the Value of Energy Management to My CFO?

It’s estimated that the average office building spends about 29 percent of its operating budget on utilities, namely electricity and natural gas. As the facility manager for your company, it is likely that you have thought about which building components consume the most energy, how energy consumption impacts overhead and more importantly, where energy might be wasted.
You already recognize that energy costs can be decreased, but convincing executive decision-makers to allocate some of the company’s budget for energy efficient endeavors is no easy task.
Their focus is on maximizing profitability and unfortunately, they don’t always view energy as an investment or recognize its payoff. Nonetheless, it’s your job to run the most efficient facility possible, which will require convincing the CEO or CFO that investing in an energy management solution is not only impactful, but necessary to keep operating costs down, asset value up and occupant comfort reasonable. To get the message across, it’s going to take some gusto. Here’s how to show your CFO or CEO the value of energy management.

1. Lead With the Bottom Line

If you want adequate time to fully pitch your case, you must quantify the benefits of energy management upfront. It is estimated that 30 percent of commercial buildings’ energy costs are wasted. It is also estimated that with an energy management solution, businesses can save as much as 10-percent in energy expenses annually, according to Energy Star.
Take your case a step further and do the math. Find out what your company spent on energy last year and calculate the potential savings. Hard facts are sure to capture your executive decision-maker’s attention.

2. Explain How it Works

Energy management tools and solutions provide data integration, automation and real-time visibility into consumption, materials, waste, energy and carbon emissions; enabling facility managers to identify trends and implement strategic operational changes to decrease waste. With greater insight into how a facility consumes its energy, managers can set savings goals and monitor energy usage to ensure those goals are met and perpetuated.

3. Assure ROI Measurability

Energy management services, products and solutions not only make ROI measurability possible, but also easy. Instead of using estimates to project ROI, energy management tools offer exact data from which to gauge the success of your energy strategy.
Additionally, by choosing the right provider to work with, your company will have the option of bundling its commodity and energy efficiency solution. By rolling the cost of their energy efficiency project into a power contract, they can simultaneously reduce consumption and spend.

4. Cover the Peripheral Benefits

Energy management strategies don’t require fixture replacements or retrofit projects that can be costly, messy and disruptive. In addition to overall energy bill savings, an energy management solution will also act as a diagnostic tool, identifying mechanical issues before they become larger problems. Lastly, achieving sustainable energy efficiency could qualify your company for LEED certification and certain tax deductions, contributing even further to cost savings and bottom line health.
To bring your case to a close, remind your executive decision-makers that the more optimized a process is, the greater the potential for cost savings. A building’s energy distribution is no exception to the rule.
To learn more about how Constellation can help you achieve your energy management goals, request a quote today.

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Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Greater Northern Lehigh

Kevin Schmidt, The Neffs National Bank Greater Northern Lehigh Chamber President 610-767-3875 •

With all the pending political changes for 2015, it was interesting to learn how these changes in both leadership and policy are going to affect us. Special thanks to Lehigh County Executive, Thomas Muller who provided insight at our February luncheon on how the changes at the state level will affect county government as well as the major priorities and concerns for the county in 2015.

With spring on its way, it is time to make a trip to our northern neighbors as we will be joining with the Carbon County Chamber of Commerce for an update on the Lehigh Carbon Community College. As you know, community college education has undergone many changes with the partnering with other colleges. This will be of great interest for parents and business owners alike.

We have narrowed down the candidates for our annual Greater Northern Lehigh Chamber Spirit Award event scheduled for April 18 and the honoree will be announced shortly. This year’s event will benefit Forgotten Felines and Fido’s and will feature a great meal, dancing, Chinese auction and more. Announcements may be made on Facebook, so be sure to like our page to keep in touch! Contact any board member if you are interested in attending and/or sponsoring our annual event!

Are you interested in becoming a member of GNLCC and the Greater Lehigh Valley Chamber of Commerce (GLVCC)? Not only do you get to help your community, but you get the opportunity to network and promote your business through various channels within the GLVCC. Reach out to myself or any board member for details on joining The Chamber and how membership can benefit you and your business!

We look forward to seeing you at our events, and as always support your local chamber members. 

Greater Bath Area Chamber

Terry DeGroot, Terraform Engineering, LLC Greater Bath Area Chamber President 610-297-5438 •

Our 2nd Annual Manicure’s & Martini’s event, sponsored by Thrivent Financial, is coming on March 25 at The Red Wolf Bar & Grille from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. The event was a great success last year and we are looking forward to another great turnout. This year we will be having cigars and bourbon on the porch, along with martini’s and manicure’s inside. If you have not been to Bath lately, you don’t know what you are missing: great restaurants and shops to visit. Bring your office staff and your friends for a great night on the town in Bath. Last year’s event was sold out!

The Pairings in Historical Bath event on April 18 from 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. is getting better all the time. The adventure begins at the Governor Wolf Historical Society with stops at the historic Siegfried Log Cabin, S. Seem Antiques and Artisans, the Bath Museum,HayesFlowers,and the Red Wolf Bar & Grille. All locations will feature a little history, food, and libations to supplement the historic theme. You can meet Mayor Fi Mirabito at the Bath Museum and at the Red Wolf Bar and Grille you can hear local author and speaker, Mark Will-Weber, talk about his popular book, “Mint Juleps with Teddy Roosevelt”, a complete history of presidential drinking. Our food sponsors are My Place Pizza, Town & Country Restaurant, Meals on Wheels of Northampton County, Bath Farmers Market, Red Wolf Bar & Grill, The Daily Grind and the Governor Wolf Historical Society. Spirit sponsors are The Seminary View, Weyerbacher Brewery, Manny Mirabito, and Buckhorn Vineyards. Most recently we have added Brown-Daub as our transportation sponsor. They will be taking our guests to and from all the tour stops. We thank them for their participation in this wonderful event. The event is limited to 60 people so sign up early. Look for more details in Connections and on The Chamber’s website ( I look forward to seeing you all in Bath. 

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Custom Dry Transfers for Wood – As Permanent Rubdown Transfers

Image Transfers 

Lawton Audio are makers of the worlds best headphones. Image Transfers printed their logo as a custom dry transfer, arranged on sheets of rubdowns.Image Transfers has been working with Mark Lawton of Lawton Audio. Mark did not have their logo as vector artwork so we re-created it by researching the font and matching the kerning. We made custom dry transfers for their custom wood headphones using their company graphics and artwork, producing for them the custom dry transfers they needed to finish off their awesomely designed headphones.

Custom Transfers for WoodLawton Headphones are hand crafted and custom made to your specifications. Lawton uses our custom rub down transfers for the logo on the side earpiece of the headset.

Finished wood has an ideal surface for applying our dry transfers. We make dry transfers from any company logo, custom graphic or trademark label. Our transfers can be applied to any smooth finished wood surface: from custom models & replicas, wood sculptures & art, to personalized or monogrammed musical instruments.

Lawton Audio custom made wood headphones, walnut finish with dry transfer logo rubbed down onto side earpiece. We make custom rubdown transfers for finished wood, like headphones, guitars and violins.Making Transfers Permanent

Our dry transfers are semi-permanent, but with another coat of wood finish, our rubdown transfers become completely permanent and durable for years. Lawton audio made three versions of transfer sheets,  they ordered their logo in Gold 872, Silver 877 and we matched a Benjamin Moore paint swatch called Twilight Zone for the PMS of their darkest color.

Lawton Audio made these headphones in an cherry tone wood finish and applied our custom rubdown transfers on the ear piece sides of the headphones.

Because of the small size of their vector artwork, Lawton Audio were able to fit dozens of rubdowns on a given 8.5″ x 11″ sheet of dry transfers, making their finished product more affordable. Then, using a burnisher tool, they applied our dry rub down transfers onto the finished wood surface of their headphones. They then finished the wood with lacquer again to protect their rubdowns, making our dry transfers fully permanent.

About Our Client

Lawton Audio are makers of the world’s best headphones. Their custom headphones are elegant, hi-tech, hand-crafted works of art for both the ears and the eyes. With over 25 of the world’s most beautiful natural ToneWoods to choose from, Lawton Audio builds you the headphones of your dreams. Visit them at

The Board of Governors

Stephen Patterson, TD Bank
Chair, Board of Governors, The Chamber 484-241-2430

Winter has once again brought plenty of challenges. But the first day of spring is right around the corner and The Chamber is ready to burst with a lineup of amazing events.

As always, The Chamber is focused on helping you connect with other businesses across the Greater Lehigh Valley to achieve personal success.

Of the many major events that The Chamber hosts each year, one of my favorites in the Commercial Real Estate Outlook. On Tuesday, April 21 The Chamber and The Frederick Group present The Lehigh Valley Commercial Real Estate Outlook and Awards “ON ICE” at PPL Center in Allentown.

Returning to the program are favorites like The Market Place Update, an overview of recent deals and statistics as well as an outlook in the Retail, Industrial and Office markets.

And this year you get an overview of the tax districts and all their associated acronyms and you will hear about the exceptional environment for development here in the Lehigh Valley both inside and outside the tax zones in a segment we call Innies and Outies.

As is customary, we will also present the 2015 Commercial Real Estate Development (CRED) Awards which recognize the most innovative commercial real estate investments in the Valley.

Please mark your calendars and join me and more than 500 Lehigh Valley business leaders for this event. Remember, this is YOUR Chamber! The more you engage, the bigger the reward.

...While you’re working on your calendar, please also make a note to stop by The Lehigh Valley B2B EXPO on Thursday, April 30 from 9 a.m. till 2 p.m. at The Sands Event Center. Admission is free and there is plenty of free parking and more than 100 exhibits! 

Thursday, March 12, 2015

Hispanic Chamber

Luis Campos, County of Northampton
Chair, Hispanic Chamber of the Lehigh Valley 610-730-

With spring around the corner, the Hispanic Chamber presents Multi-Cultural Women in Leadership. Presented in a panel format, this year’s event will be held at the Hotel Bethlehem’s Grand Ball Room on March 16 from 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.

As in past years, the 2015 panel consist of dynamic female leaders who have succeeded in their careers and industry of choice. The distinguished list of presenters includes Lisa Perez CEO of the Lehigh Valley Dual Language Charter School, the Reverend Marilyn Hartman from El Shaddai Bethlehem Ministries, Tammy Davis, CEO Nexlevel Consulting Services, LLC, and Doctor Sylvia Medina, Ophthalmologist.

We welcome you to join us and hear the challenges faced by these women leaders and how they managed to overcome adversities and succeed in their chosen careers.

Stay tuned for continued announcements of programs including: Prospects for a Free Market Cuba and Building a Successful Sales Franchise. 

East Penn Chamber

Kate Hart Zayaitz, National Penn Bank
East Penn Chamber Chair
5029 •

Our Chamber thrives on partnerships. Not only do we value and work our partnerships between board members on a daily basis, we have a wonderful relationship with the Emmaus Main Street Partners organization. Our board members were in great attendance for the Annual Emmaus Arts Commission SnowBlast Winter Arts Festival on February 6. This event draws many Chamber members, both near and far to enjoy ice sculpting, children’s activities, artist demonstrations, food and the infamous Ice Bar.

EPCC continues to host exciting luncheon programs with the Western Lehigh Chamber. What in the world is the Hamilton Boulevard Corridor study? Our chambers were treated to a lively explanation at our luncheon meeting in February at Brookside Country Club.

The Study was initiated by Lower and Upper Macungie Townships, with the support LANTA and PennDOT, to help coordinate transportation and land use planning across the municipalities that line this important corridor. By coordinating these efforts, both municipalities seek to promote a more sustainable region and implement the goals and objectives focused on a more regional plan for a sustainable future. The corridor is comprised of important roadways and distinct communities. The area extends from US 22 at the western gateway to I-78 at the eastern gateway. The study indicates that when the existing and proposed uses are combined, they create the scenario for future development on Hamilton Boulevard of over 2 million square feet of Retail/Office space, almost 2.5 million square feet of warehouse/office space, 130 residential units, and over 13,000 parkings paces! Be on the look out for future development!

We look forward to seeing you all at our next event! 

Friday, March 6, 2015

Your Desk Job Is a Health Risk

Devin Christman, PT, DPT

The alarm wakes you at 6 a.m. You get up, shower, dress and sit down to eat breakfast.  Next, you get in your car and sit for your commute to work.  You take a few steps to enter your office and proceed to sit at your deskfor eight hours.  You commute home, followed by eating dinner, watching TV or reading a book until it is time for bed. If this is a typical day for you, then you are at an increased risk for a variety of health conditions that can shorten your life.

Research Shows Effects of Prolonged Sitting

A 2008 research study by Vanderbilt University revealed that on average people spend 7.7 hours/day seated when they are awake. This sedentary lifestyle has been found to lead to the following:

  • Increased risk of diabetes, cardiovascular disease, osteoporosis, obesity and certain cancers
  • Increased incidence of neck pain, back pain and headaches
  • Muscle atrophy from inactivity
  • Increased risk of disability later in life

What Can You Do To Reduce Your Risk?

Changes to your daily routine can be made to reduce the total amount of time spent sitting each day and decrease the health risks listed above. Here are some helpful tips:

  • Replace your desk chair with an exercise ball to increase energy use and improve posture.
  • Take breaks from prolonged sitting by getting up every 30 to 60 minutes to stretch and walk.
  • When you aren’t working, participate in moderately intense exercise or activity for at least 30 minutes a day, 5 days a week. Activities can include brisk walking, golf, mowing the lawn or cleaning.
  • Perform work activities in a standing position when possible or get up from your desk at intervals throughout the day. For example, stand when talking on the phone, make several trips to the copy machine or walk to co-worker’s office to talk instead of using email.  
  • Inquire at work about having a standing work station or treadmill desk to increase activity levels while maintaining work productivity.

A physical therapist can help if you develop back or neck pain, headaches or other conditions despite efforts to counteract the effects of sitting at a desk all day. Call 1-888-44-REHAB (43422) or contact us online today to schedule an appointment.

Easton Area Chamber

Denise Smith, State Theatre Center for the Arts Easton Area Chamber Chair 610-258-7766 Ext 223 •

On behalf of the Easton Board of Directors and the Easton area membership, I’d like to extend a warm welcome to the newest addition to the Easton/Phillipsburg Chamber staff -LaurieColvin. LauriebringseventandcommunicationsexperiencetoTheChamber and we are excited to work with her on our upcoming chamber events and initiatives. Welcome, Laurie!

Speaking of events, please mark your calendar for our upcoming “State of the City” address with Easton Mayor Sal Panto, Jr. on March 19 at Lafayette College. It’s been fascinating to witness the growth and impact of this event over the years. We now proudly host a sold-out event with business and community leaders from all over the Lehigh Valley representing various sectors of business. There’s no denying the exciting developments taking place throughout our entire city, so join us to celebrate the past year’s achievements and to discuss what the future holds for Easton. A special thanks to Mayor Panto, City Council, and the administration for their continued support and partnership with The Chamber. Today, perhaps more than ever, it’s critical that the business community works closely with city leadership to enhance the economy and improve the quality of life in Easton. I encourage you to register today for the March 19th breakfast with Mayor Panto at Lafayette College. See you then!