And the Winners Are…

betterearth author
Better Earth

Celebrating the Winners of the First Annual Earthies Awards

On Thursday, January 12, 2023, Better Earth hosted the first ever Earthies Awards following our 2023 company kickoff call. This livestream event featured our 2022 highlights, what we are looking forward to in 2023, and introduced The Better Way. To conclude the event, our leadership team recognized some standout individuals and teams who were awarded with Earthie Awards (think, our take on The Dundies from The Office). Continue reading to learn about The Earthies winners and why they were chosen to receive their awards.

Luis Larraburu Top Closer

In the month of December, Luis Larraburu closed 47 deals, and he is the TOP inside sales person at Better Earth. Upon receiving his Earthie, Luis said that being recognized as the Top Closer was “a great honor” stating that “there are a lot of great salespeople in the company and being awarded made me feel very proud.” 

Luis has been a part of Better Earth since August 2022, and has noted that what stands out about Better Earth is “the atmosphere and what we stand for in making a better planet.” When asked what his favorite part of his job was, the answer was simple: “I can leave a better place for my kids. The planet really needs our help, and every family that I help has meaning.” 

When he’s not at work, Luis can be found spending time with his children and family making memories together. We are so glad to have Luis as a part of the Better Earth team and can’t wait to see how he continues to make an impact in the future!

Challyn Williams No Negativity

Challyn Williams, CX Scheduling Manager, was awarded The Earthie for No Negativity, and with good reason! No matter what the scenario, any conversation you have with Challyn, you will walk away with an elevated feeling of positivity and excitement! Challyn said that she was “totally caught off guard” when her name was announced as the winner and that “it feels good to feel validated and acknowledged, and to feel noticed that hard work pays off.” She went on to elaborate that “in your day to day you don’t really think that you’re making a huge impact…but that recognition spoke volumes to the fact that every day counts and each day is important.”

Challyn started at Better Earth in September of 2021, and joined our team with about 5-6 years of experience in the solar industry. When she started, she was one of three people in the scheduling department, and worked her way up to a supervisor position and hired a bigger team, where she is now one of seventeen. There has been a lot of fast-paced growth in the department in the past year, and one of the things Challyn is most proud of is how fast they have been able to grow while maintaining the work. 

Challyn’s favorite part of Better Earth is the diversity of our company and that “we are looking for Better Earth to represent all people, and for it to be a place of equality and love” and that this “always seems to be at the forefront of how we represent what this Earth really looks like and it’s a mixture of all of us.” 

Outside of work, you can find Challyn hiking, in the water, taking bike rides with her 4-year-old, or any outdoor activity. We are looking forward to seeing what the future holds for Challyn and are so happy to have her as a part of the Better Earth team.

Harrison Reid Living By Our Values: Communication

The Living By Our Values: Communication Earthie was awarded to Account Executive Harrison Reid. After starting with Better Earth in May 2022, Harrison has played a crucial part in the retention and growth of our dealers partners. Upon receiving his award, Harrison said “Being recognized for this award came as an absolute shock. I had zero expectations of being awarded anything and hearing my name was a massive surprise. That said, I’m elated and beyond grateful to have received this award.”

Harrison always has a positive attitude, works hard every single day, and has been described as simply the best. According to Harrison, he has “never felt more aligned with a company in my life. In fact, every day that passes is feeling less like work and more like life itself.” His motivation comes from the people he works with every day, and he truly believes in the mission we stand for at Better Earth.

When he’s not working, Harrison can be found focusing on his wellness, improving himself cognitively, physically, and spiritually, and traveling the world. Better Earth is so glad to have Harrison as an integral part of our team and look forward to his continued success.

Lili Vu Recruiter of the Year

Lili Vu was awarded Recruiter of the Year because of her continuous demonstration of her ability to adapt to the ever-changing environment of the recruitment world. When asked how it felt to hear her name called for Recruiter of the Year, Lili said that she “didn’t know that was a category and I really thought someone else was going to get it, which I was really excited for, and then they said my name and I was like ‘oh WOW this is happening.’” 

Lili started at Better Earth after being headhunted by Nate Deas on LinkedIn. She said Nate “took a shot in the dark” when he reached out to her and that “everything I know in recruiting has been through him.” Starting as a Talent Acquisition Coordinator, Lili has worked her way to a Talent Acquisition Manager where she now has her own team and continues to grow and feel supported in her role. She went on to say that she loves that her job gives her “the ability to see people grow. It’s a really cool thing to be able to interview with someone, talk to them, find out what their dreams are, and then when they get hired, seeing them grow…it’s very fulfilling.” 

From playing Quidditch in college to entering the recruiting world, Lili continues to grow at Better Earth and beyond! When she’s not working, she enjoys cooking and hanging out with her dog. We look forward to seeing what the future holds for Lili and watching her continue to grow.

The Scheduling Team The Dream Team

The scheduling team at Better Earth has grown significantly within the past year, starting with 3-4 people and growing into a team of seventeen! Throughout this quick growth, the work continued to get done and processes were put in place to ensure we weren’t falling behind, which is why they were awarded The Dream Team!

Survey and install scheduling at two of the most time sensitive and pivotal parts of our business growth at Better Earth, and the scheduling experience is directly tied to ensuring a positive experience for our homeowners. Without proper install scheduling, we would not be able to ensure our crews have a full install calendar and consistent work. 

Scheduling the surveys and installations can be an incredibly hectic process, with an insane amount of back and forth, changes with reschedules, cancellations, weather delays, unexpected circumstances, and more, but this team holds it all together, acting with urgency, positivity, and strong communication to ensure we can continue to deliver the best experience possible to our homeowners. 

Bethany Hanson Living By Our Values: Extreme Ownership

Bethany Hansen is an Accounts Payable Supervisor at Better Earth, and was awarded the Living By Our Values: Extreme Ownership Award. Upon receiving the award, Bethany said “it was really surprising. I got extreme ownership and I do feel like I embody that, but I feel like everyone at Better Earth embodies that. That’s exactly who we bring on on the team, so it was really great to feel recognized for everything that I have done over the year of 2022.” Bethany always owns up to the good, the bad, and the ugly. She doesn’t shy away from constructive feedback and is always looking to improve and grow, which is why she was awarded the Extreme Ownership Earthie.

Bethany joined Better Earth in October of 2021, working with a financial controller who is no longer with the company. Bethany says that “when he left, it was just all of us who had been with the company for about two weeks.” From there, the team made the decisions about what to prioritize and how to get things done. Throughout her time at Better Earth, Bethany and the team have worked to improve processes and continue to push forward.

When she’s not working, Bethany is a dog mom, spending time with her Pomeranian puppy and training him. We are so glad to have someone as driven as Bethany on the Better Earth team and look forward to continuing to see her grow.

Fresno Warehouse Warehouse Assist

Our Fresno Warehouse has taken the initiative and had crews traveling throughout the entire year to assist with new warehouse openings and help out in any way they can. Their commitment and willingness to step up and do what needs to be done, even when things may fall outside of their scope of work, is why this warehouse was awarded the Warehouse Assist Earthie. We are so thankful for everyone at this warehouse and all the hard work they put in to help Better Earth continue to grow.

George Jessop Crew Assist

George Jessop constantly steps up to travel to any location when called upon, even when last-minute requests to help out other offices are made. He is flexible in his work and willing to adapt to changes thrown at him, which is why he was awarded the Crew Assist Earthie.

George started at Better Earth as an Installer, working his way up to Crew Lead and eventually Mentor–the highest field ranking at Better Earth. He is always supportive and respectful of our industrial athlete installers, shows great integrity in completing tasks, and always shows up, even when a leader isn’t there to offer praise. George is constantly taking the initiative to look for opportunities to contribute to the success of our company. 

No matter the situation, George is one to rise to the occasion. His unwavering dedication, sacrifices, and hard work is greatly appreciated here at Better Earth, and we can’t wait to see what the future holds for Geroge.

Michael McClure Top Saver

Michael McClure is constantly breaking his own record months in saves and installs while upholding an amazing experience with everyone he works with, which is why he was awarded with the Top Saver Earthie. Michael says that winning this award was “really awesome. It was more about the words that Trace said and I thought it was so funny how he mentioned wanting to pull me to Inside Sales and Dean said ‘absolutely not.’ It was just a great feeling.” 

Michael started at Better Earth in November of 2021 and came out the doors crushing it. By putting the work in every single day, Michael worked his way to CX Retention Team Lead and continues to push himself to be better and continue to grow every day. In his own words, Michael “loves the grind” and “loves solving problems.” 

When asked what he loves about Better Earth, Michael stated that “Better Earth truly cares and treats everyone as an equal…we’re all on the same mission and Better Earth always over-delivers on everything.” 

When he’s not working, Michael can be found working out, hanging with friends, and working on self-development. We are lucky to have such a driven and hard-working person on the Better Earth team, and look forward to seeing Michael continue to grow.

Dmitry Lipilin Living By Our Values: Belief

Dmitry Lipilin, or Dima, is our Data Systems Manager at Better Earth and was rightfully awarded with the Living By Our Values: Belief Earthie. Dima is always willing to step up to the challenge, even going so far as to teach himself new softwares, in order to help Better Earth grow and to, in turn, grow with us. After receiving his award, Dima said “I was surprised. The nomination was quite interesting to me and I definitely appreciate the Earthie. I am really happy and really glad that I was noticed and mentioned.”

Dima started at Better Earth in April of 2020 preparing reports and Google spreadsheets, then went on to learn web development and eventually went on to create Scoreboard – our internal tool for tracking Better Points and allowing sales reps to track their rankings, keep up with projects, view commissions, and more. He has recently been working with a new team to develop more professional tools, and has been learning more about Java programming in order to further his growth and keep pushing forward.

As a remote employee working from France, Dima says that he appreciates “the flexibility of being given a task and being able to get it done when I am able.” Additionally, Dima says that “the team is the best. I’ve never been a part of a team better than Better Earth. The people are great here. Always supporting and helpful.”

When he’s not working, Dime enjoys visiting the gym, cycling, and is a big foodie! We appreciate having someone as hardworking and dedicated as Dima on the team and look forward to continuing to grow with him at Better Earth!

Amie Bunnell Living By Our Values: Empathy

As the Director of Compensation and Benefits, Amie Bunnell always goes above and beyond to make sure people are paid correctly and is always there to help in any way possible. After being recognized for the Living By Our Values: Empathy Earthie, Amie said “it’s nice to know that people appreciate the effort, because there’s a lot of work that goes into making everybody as happy as I can.” Working in compensation and benefits, Amie said “people don’t really reach out to me unless something is wrong…so it’s nice to know people don’t just associate me with something going wrong.”

When Amie started at Better Earth, she was working part-time assisting with payroll, and her role quickly transitioned into a full-time position. Before starting at Better Earth, Amie says “I was a stay at home mom before. I was trying to stay home with my kids. This just happened to work out really really well, and it’s been a good fit.” Working with payroll in compensation and benefits, Amie said that “one of my favorite things is that my job directly impacts everyone in this company. I operate with empathy in my position because yes, we all love and support Better Earth, but at the end of the day, we all work for a paycheck. Making sure that team members get the correct pay is my main drive.”

When she’s not at work, Amie enjoys spending time with her family, traveling to new places, and experiencing new things. Better Earth is happy to have Amie as part of our team and we look forward to watching her continued success in the future.

Lucy Dallas Customer Whisperer

Lucy Dallas has exemplified outstanding customer service as CX Scheduling Supervisor at Better Earth, and has an incredibly positive and influential attitude and voice. After winning her Earthie, Lucy said she “feels very honored and humbled. It’s really great to be with a company that recognizes you for the positives.” 

When Lucy started with Better Earth, she had zero solar experience, and over twenty years of customer service experience under her belt. She says that working at Better Earth has been “such a life change.” She took a total leap of faith transitioning from working at restaurants and hotels to a remote position at Better Earth, where she has worked to create SOPs and training manuals from the ground up in her department. She says that Better Earth is “not just slapping solar on a roof. There’s a lot of other ways that we can, and are, showing that we can make improvements in the communities around us.”

Outside of work, Lucy loves to travel, was previously a sioux chef so she loves to cook and bake, has taught herself how to embroider, and loves movies and her super sweet cat! We are so happy to have Lucy as a part of the Better Earth team!

Jaileen Ramirez Fire Fighter

Jaileen Ramirez is known at Better Earth as the escalations boss! As CX Scheduling Supervisor, she can de-escalate any customer and win them over with kindness, professionalism, and her calm, steady demeanor. After finding out she received the Fire Fighter Award, Jaileen said “It feels great! You feel supported, you feel really good about yourself. Every job should do this! Better Earth has set the bar so high at this point…it pushes you to want to do more.”

Jaileen came from another solar company, and was reached out to by our recruiters about joining Better Earth. She said “it took me a little while, because I’m one of those people that once I’m somewhere, it takes me a long time to want to branch out or leave, even if I’m not comfortable or happy in a place…but I knew what I wanted to do and something told me to go for it.” During her time here, she has been promoted twice, and continues to grow every day.

When she’s not working at Better Earth, Jaileen can be found spending time with friends and family, painting, or doing nails (she’s also a nail tech)! We are glad to have Jaileen as a part of the Better Earth team and look forward to watching her continue to succeed!

Marin Escamilla Sales Whisperer

Our Sales Whisperer Earthie was awarded to Marin Escamilla, who continuously shows incredible empathy while working with our sales partners at Better Earth. Upon receiving his award, Marin said “I wasn’t expecting to win an award, so when I first heard my name I was like ‘what? That’s me!’ And then it felt good…as soon as it set in it was like all my hard work, all the time and energy I put in, was being recognized. It just felt great.”

Once joining the Better Earth team, Marin has focused a lot on adaptability, especially working as a Sales Experience Specialist in a department that is so fresh and new. There are changes happening on a fairly regular basis, and Marin says that “it’s about understanding the current setting and not remaining too comfortable. Just constantly staying on your feet…moving and improving.”

Outside of work, Marin enjoys spending time with his family, playing video games, and watching movies. We are excited to see Marin continuing to grow and are so happy to have him as a member of the Better Earth team.

Cho Bonsol Growth Hacker

Project Review Manager Cho Bonsol is relentless in his process awareness and constantly strives to master his world. After being awarded the Growth Hacker Earthie, Cho said “it was really unexpected…it was really cool to see other people winning, and it caught me off guard when Shaun said my name. Not a lot of stuff revolves around overseas people, and getting acknowledged for all the hard work we’ve put in even more than compensates for that. It made me feel really seen and appreciated.” He went on to say that this would not have been possible without his team, and it was a shared experience for the whole team.

Cho started at Better Earth in March 2020. Prior to working at Better Earth, he was a call center agent working in an office, then once the pandemic hit many people began looking for online employment. He says that his “whole lifestyle right now is only possible because of Better Earth. I am able to provide for my family–I have two kids–so I really appreciate that I am able to stay at home to take care of them, keep an eye on them…that’s only possible with Better Earth.”

When he’s not working, Cho enjoys playing RPG video games like Path of Exile. Better Earth is so glad to have Cho as a part of our team, and can’t wait to see how he continues to grow in his career!

Alice Xu Show Me the Money

With a strong desire for Better Earth to become a household brand and a more sustainable company, Alice Xu was awarded the Show Me the Money Earthie. After hearing her name announced, Alice said “I was definitely shocked. I did not expect anything. Getting a company announcement of my Earthie award was surprising but funny, because the category is so me. I was definitely shocked.”

When Alice joined the accounting department, it was a practically brand new team. Alice said “every one of us all started at the same time, it was a completely new team. Diving in was very much like, you have to be a fast learner.” She is not one to shy away from work, and always accepts the challenge presented. As a Senior Accountant, Alice was proactive in building a team and leading a critical department for Better Earth.

Outside of work, Alice enjoys working out, spending time at home relaxing, and trying new foods! Better Earth is lucky to have Alice as part of the team, and we look forward to seeing her continue to succeed.

Patrick Mullen Coach of the Year

Patrick Mullen brought Better Earth to a place of having reliable financials and reliable predictability of financials and cash flow, as well as started the data department, which is why he was awarded Coach of the Year. Upon receiving his award, Patrick said “I was definitely surprised. I was surrounded by my team which was really cool…all the key players got recognized, and then when I got recognized I was like ‘that’s pretty awesome.’ It was really special.”

As Controller of the Finance and Accounting Department, Patrick led a department of strong personnel from one that had no direction, scalability, or true reliability at the beginning of the year, to a well-oiled machine that has truly become pivotal to the decision making process & future outlook of the company. By getting to know the team and getting to know the company, Patrick was able to become a true leader and set his department up for success. When asked what he loves about his job, he said “seeing my teammates surprise themselves, achieving and creating things that they don’t expect that they can do.”

When he’s not working, one of Patrick’s favorite things to do is long-distance running, as he finds it a great way to clear his head and enjoy nature. Patrick has already accomplished so much as a member of Better Earth, and we look forward to seeing his continued success.

Bill Sumrow Employee of the Year

Better Earth’s Employee of the Year Earthie was awarded to Procurement Manager William Sumrow, who always goes above and beyond the call of duty, while maintaining a positive attitude and an insane work ethic. Upon receiving his award, Bill said “It was super special. I was really appreciative of the recognition. I’ve put in a lot of hard work this year, but to think that they thought that I deserved it and was worthy of what is supposed to represent all of the company values that Better Earth holds dear…to hear that they felt I deserved it was a special moment for sure.”

Bill joined Better Earth in April of 2021, and started traveling right away, visiting warehouses when our company was just two warehouses in California. Over the years Bill has seen the massive growth of the company, and stated that “when you go through that much growth, usually you lose sense or lose sight of what the company is about, but somehow everybody has stayed tied to it and stayed true to it the entire time.” In his position, Bill has the opportunity to travel and visit all of the different Better Earth warehouses, interact with lots of different people, and see how our mission is coming to fruition.

Outside of work, Bill is a very active person. In addition to woodworking and building things, he also enjoys hiking, fishing, camping, and more! We are extremely happy to have Bill on the Better Earth team and look forward to seeing him continue to succeed in the future.

Congratulations to All of Our Winners!

At Better Earth, we are extremely proud of all of our employees and our continued mission to make the world a better place. We would not be able to do what we do without everyone on our team working together every day to ensure our operation is running smoothly. Thank you to everyone on our team for all of your hard work, and congratulations to those who were recognized and received our Earthies Awards!