Rivanna offers elegant, planet-friendly alternatives to traditional trophies and plaques.
We started in 2001 with a simple objective: to create green jobs for refugees and others in our community who needed safe, meaningful, and rewarding employment. Today, we are an award-winning B Corp, an award-winning leader in responsible forestry, and one of the most respected award companies in America.
Creating Jobs for Refugees
Our founder, Crystal Mario, began by consulting the experts. The Charlottesville, VA office of the International Rescue Committee (IRC) helped Crystal understand the workplace needs of IRC's refugee clients. Rivanna started as a small manufacturing company, accessible by public transportation, with flexible hours, training for non-English speakers, decent benefits, and living wages.
From the beginning, we committed to making the greenest possible products. We became an FSC®-certified chain-of-custody provider before we shipped our first product in 2002. (FSC-C019049). Sustainable forestry certification enabled us to formalize our commitment to the environment and be confident about the sources of our raw materials.
By 2017, we had completely outgrown our original woodshop in Charlottesville. We expanded to a much larger facility In Richmond, VA that is still close to public transportation and near the Richmond office of the IRC, our community partner.
Designing Products with our Planet in Mind
Our original plan was to make corporate gifts, small items that could be hand crafted by recently-arrived non-English speakers. Within months of opening, a prospective customer asked us to make plaques. We gave it a shot. The customer liked them, so we made more. Today, we design and build plaques, trophies, and awards for customers in 50 states and around the world. We enable our customers to honor our planet as they honor others, and we love our work.
Without the burden of legacy products or practices, we have been free to define our work and our outputs according to our own sense of what is best for customers and the environment. In addition to FSC-certified wood, we have added other planet-friendly materials to our portfolio. We've also established solid supply-chain partnerships to help us design and create beautiful products.
Reaffirming Our Stakeholder Commitments
In 2011, we had the opportunity to reaffirm our values and our commitments to our stakeholders. On July 1, Benefit Corporation legislation became effective in Virginia. To support the legislation, we amended our Articles of Incorporation that same day, becoming one of Virginia's first Benefit Corporations.
Virginia law requires that an independent third party certifier review each Benefit Corporation. We chose to be certified by the nonprofit B Lab. B Lab scrutinizes companies applying for Certified B Corp status against their rigorous definition of what makes a responsible business. We completed the B Lab Impact Assessment in July 2011 and were approved for certification that same month. In 2013 and 2015 and 2017 we were recertified. We are currently submitting our 2021 recertification paperwork. We are deeply grateful to B Lab and our B Corp Community for generously sharing best practices, and inspiring us to be a better company.
Promoting and Celebrating a Greener Future
We believe products that express gratitude, reward performance, and celebrate excellence should harm neither the planet nor the people who create, purchase, or receive them. Over the past twenty years, we've done our best to introduce fresh thinking about recognition products and elegant award designs, all the while upholding our commitment to our planet and community. As we look ahead, we plan to create more elegant, innovative products and strive to deliver the best service imaginable. With the help of our extraordinary and inspiring customers, suppliers, fellow B Corps, friends and fans, we will do our utmost to create more green jobs, address our climate impacts, and find better ways to give back to our community.
We've come together from all over the world. We believe in business as a force for good.Meet our Team