Practical Activist Q&A featuring Tracy Tinclair
- Bluestone Staff
- October 6, 2020
Tracy Tinclair is a Bluestone Life customer who embodies what a Practical Activist means to us. She is both personally and professionally committed to the B Corporation movement and the 1% for the Planet network. Tracy is the Events Manager for Hanson Bridgett, a nationally recognized law firm in the Bay Area that is a Certified B Corp committed to diversity, charitable giving, pro bono legal work and hands-on service. Her Bluestone Life policy supports Kitchen Table Advisors, which is fueling the economic viability of a multi-racial next generation of sustainable small farms and ranches in Northern California through practical business advising and trusted relationships.
Q: Tracy, your career path has a purpose-driven thread through it. What sparked that for you?
A: I’ve always been someone who really cares about the planet and giving back to my community. When I was a kid, my dream was to be a marine biologist to save the ocean animals, but I also love math so I ended up getting my first job at my local bank at 15. I started out encoding checks after school and then I went to college and studied business administration.
A few years after college, I found my way to an environmental, community-focused bank -- where I really became aware of the B Corp movement and felt that I had found my calling. I really loved combining my banking background with a values-oriented career and had the privilege of working closely with many inspiring nonprofits and socially conscious companies. While the B Corp movement was growing, I feel my commitment and dedication to business as a force for good also grew. I realized that it’s not just about buying organic food or home products, but also about your service providers like your insurance company. To me, it’s important to support those companies with my money, but I also decided that it was important for me to continue my career working for a B Corp. Last year, I joined Hanson Bridgett, one of the law firms that founded the B Corp movement legislation, and that’s been meaningful to me to work for a company that puts impact and social responsibility at the core of what they do. While I get to plan events for the firm’s clients and community, I also volunteer to plan events to engage the B Corp community on the board of the B Local Bay Area. Through this role, I get to plan fun and meaningful community gatherings and meet a lot of like-minded people working at fellow B Corps locally and around the world.
Q: How did you first learn about or become involved with Kitchen Table Advisors (KTA)?
A: I first heard KTA’s founder, Anthony Chang, at a lunch and learn event. He told his story about founding the organization; how he was talking to farmers at his local farmers market and realized they were struggling. He asked himself: How can we leverage a business mindset to support farmers? I was really inspired by that and knew I wanted to get involved and support KTA’s mission. A couple of years later, I joined the Host Committee for KTA’s annual fundraiser, Grazing at the Kitchen Table, an event which pairs chefs and farmers together, along with a community of eaters that supports them. I engaged with a lot of like-minded organizations, including many B Corps, to participate in the event as sponsors, donate an auction item or give food or drinks for the evening. The event provides a very inspiring night of hearing from and celebrating KTA’s farmer and rancher clients, connecting with new and old friends, while enjoying the best local food in the Bay.
Q: What prompted you to choose Kitchen Table Advisors as the beneficiary of Bluestone’s complimentary benefit for high-impact non-profits.
A: I was excited to learn about the Impact Rider with Bluestone Life which supports non-profits like KTA who are partners of 1% for the Planet. It was innovative and I had never heard of a life insurance company doing anything like this before. I first heard about Bluestone through both 1% for the Planet and the B Corp community. It was a natural fit for me to choose to support KTA for my impact rider because I really care about supporting a sustainable food system and supporting local farmers. My husband and I both had small life insurance policies through work, but when I got pregnant, we quickly learned that that we needed more life insurance to protect our family. There are many large insurance companies out there, but Bluestone had the values that were aligned with us, and their products are issued by the only B Corp life insurance carrier. That was important to us, and we also had a great personal experience working with them.
Q: Do you have any advice for people who are looking to connect their values more to their daily decisions (such as banking, insurance, law, food, etc.)?
A: Take the extra step to do a little research before you make a purchase. It’s easy to go to the directories for B Corporation and 1% for the Planet and search for companies in virtually every category you can think of and you’ll likely find one that is values-aligned. And, it’s not just about the day to day purchase; think about the bigger decisions like where you bank and your life insurance; you can have even more impact with those. I love learning about a new B Corp and making those connections myself for my personal life so I can share with my friends, family and B Corp network.
Q: Any final thoughts?
A: The B Corp and 1% for the Planet movements are still growing and gaining even more momentum. During this pandemic, this community has really stepped up and shown how important it is to be aware of how we’re spending our money. Many of the B Corps have put their employees and community first and continued to give back even when times are tough. They also have shown real leadership in terms of promoting racial justice in their organizations. The community of eaters in the Bay Area has also shown up for farmers and ranchers like the individuals that Kitchen Table Advisors serves. The awareness encouraged in the B Corp and 1% for the Planet movements is being extended to where our food comes from and the conditions the people who produce our food experience. Eaters are connecting more deeply with local producers, especially those who are farming and ranching in a way that nurtures the planet and feeds their communities well.
If all of us really personally support socially conscious companies with all of our purchases, we can really change our economy into one that is more fair and just.
Bluestone encourages the Practical Activist in all of us to get involved in your community and support organizations like Kitchen Table Advisors that are creating solutions every day for healthier, local and sustainable food systems.
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