BEST Certification

Do you want to be one of the BEST?


The Elk Refuge Inn, Jackson Lake LodgeFlat Creek Ranch and Jackson Hole Chamber of Commerce do!  We are pleased to announce that the Jackson Hole Chamber of Commerce has joined the Elk Refuge Inn, Jackson Lake Lodge, and Flat Creek Ranch to become the first Jackson Hole BEST Sustainability Certified business and organizations!

Anna Olson, President and CEO of the Jackson Hole Chamber of Commerce states, “At the Chamber we want to lead by example and show our members this path is achievable. We are committed to business sustainability and sustainable tourism in Jackson Hole and Teton County, Wyoming. Throughout the process to become BEST certified, we have learned the best practices to minimize waste, expand our knowledge of being green, reduce in-office air pollution, and make changes that affect our footprint as an organization.”   “We look forward to implementing all that we learned on a larger scale throughout the community, this includes environmentally conscious Chamber Events, educational and resource provisions for our membership, and behavior modeling for millions of visitors we see each year in our four Visitor Service locations” Olson added.

“Working with Riverwind Foundation to become BEST certified has been an enlightening journey and one we greatly value – we could not have gotten to the heightened level of sustainable operations without their guidance. We are proud to be BEST certified and hope to encourage other businesses within our community to join us in these important efforts.” Riley Frances Boone, Operations Manager, Jackson Hole Chamber of Commerce.

Alex Klein, VP and General Manager of Grand Teton Lodge Company states, “Continuous improvement of Grand Teton Lodge Company’s environmental sustainability practices has always been a primary goal and core value for our company. The BEST certification for Jackson Lake Lodge represents an important milestone for us on that path, and we are proud to be among the first companies in Jackson Hole to have achieved this comprehensive standard. We commend the work of the Riverwind Foundation in helping local businesses improve their practices and contribute to the overall sustainability of Jackson Hole and the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem. We look forward to continuing to work within the BEST program to improve and promote sustainability in this special place that we all work and live.”

“As a business owner striving for sustainable practices throughout all aspects of an operation can be challenging” says Shelby and Trey Scharp, Managers of Flat Creek Ranch.  “We offer a unique perspective operating entirely off the grid, so sustainability is particularly important. Having recognition of our continued actions to do the right things is greatly appreciated. The BEST certification demonstrates the hard work of our entire staff as well as our love and respect of the place we live.  This program quantifies, at exceedingly high standards, what sustainable practices look like and make the goals tangible for other local companies to follow suit.”

Monay Olson, Owner of the Shine Group (including the Elk Refuge Inn) states “Creating a positive impact is our core value and we action this in many measurable ways. However, as a small hotel with limited resources we were concerned in our ability to achieve BEST status.  The tools and resources provided by the Riverwind Foundation are outstanding.  The process of achieving BEST is much more than a badge. It’s learning that the implementation of numerous initiatives add to delivering a powerful impact to the achievement of sustainability. But we’re just one business, we’d love to share our story to help others.”
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Reduce Reuse Recycle (RRR) Business Leaders have the option to pursue an advanced certification for sustainable business practices.  The Business Emerald Sustainability Tier or BEST program are for those businesses that are committed to environmental, social, and economic sustainability performance comparable to the highest global standards.  Those businesses that are successful in meeting the BEST standard will be certified and recognized for their commitment to sustainability as our community’s Emerald Leaders.

Businesses that successfully apply to participate in the BEST Program will receive up to 10 hours of assistance from the Riverwind Foundation.  This support includes guidance for meeting the BEST standard, assistance with the BEST survey, and access to the BEST Library of information resources including best practices.  Lodging businesses will also be assisted in taking the TripAdvisor Green Leader Survey.

Businesses ready for certification will be assessed through a desk top documentation review and an on-site visit.  Upon successful completion of the assessment, businesses will be certified as an Emerald Leader.  Emerald Leaders will receive recognition and promotional benefits from the Riverwind Foundation and its partners.

To apply for the BEST Program or to receive further information, please contact Tim O’Donoghue at or (307) 690-3316.

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