The Build #44: Stretch

Managing change isn’t always easy. For industrial engineer and climate change policy expert Shannon Binns, the need to manage change became apparent when he moved to fast-growing Charlotte, North Carolina and observed a major lack of planning in the city’s sustainable growth plans.

This observation inspired Shannon to start a journey of a thousand one-on-one conversations with locals about how the region was planning to handle a surge in population, business, and development. Sustain Charlotte was formed and the company quickly turned into the promise for a sustainable future in one of America’s fastest-growing metros. It’s the story of Sustain Charlotte on The Build.

Key Takeaways
[1:32] All about Charlotte, North Carolina through the eyes of Shannon Binns.
[4:33] Thinking about sustainability in one of America’s fastest-growing metros.
[7:47] Turning a hobby concept into a team-run organization on a mission.
[14:53] Funding a grant, membership, and consultation hybrid business model.
[17:34] Upholding the original vision of Sustain Charlotte while navigating the company’s growth.
[20:41] Natural demographic shifts that support the mission of Sustain Charlotte.
[23:06] Playing the consequence-free convener role for a wide variety of stakeholders.
[25:40] Conservation vs. sustainability and helping businesses understand the implications of both.
[28:37] Looking ahead to the smart-growth future of Sustain Charlotte.
[31:29] Starting up a similar effort in any community starts with one-on-one conversations.


Announcer (00:01):
From 2820 Radio in Philadelphia, it's The Build. Conversations with entrepreneurs and innovators about their dreams, their triumphs, and their challenges

Joe Taylor Jr. (00:14):
Stretch. In our world of work, we often find we have to stretch ourselves to manage change. For industrial engineer and climate change policy expert, Shannon Binns. His stretch happened when you moved from Washington DC to Charlotte, North Carolina. That city experienced a major rebound after the financial crisis of 2008, and yet Shannon observed the lack of central planning for how the region was preparing to handle a surge in population, business and development. So, Shannon stretched himself. First by organizing conversations about the city's sustainable growth plans. That action stretched into something new, a shared vision between city, state education and business leaders. And for Shannon, the biggest stretch of all the launch of an organization dedicated to ensuring that all those stakeholders would remain true to their shared goals. It's the story of Sustain Charlotte coming up next on The Build.

Announcer (01:14):
The Build is made possible with support from 2820 Press. Providing business consulting and content strategy services to customer obsessed companies nationwide. More information at

Joe Taylor Jr. (01:31):
It's The Build. I'm Joe Taylor Jr. Joined today by Shannon Binns, founder and executive director of Sustain Charlotte. Welcome to the show.

Shannon Binns (01:39):
Thanks so much. It's great to be here. Happy new year.

Joe Taylor Jr. (01:42):
Thank you. You as well. So for folks who are not familiar, Charlotte is possibly one of the fastest growing metropolitan regions in the United States. And you moved down to Charlotte in 2007. Is that right?

Shannon Binns (01:58):
Yeah, that's right.

Joe Taylor Jr. (01:59):
Tell me a little bit about what attracted you to the area and what some of the things you observed were inspiring you to found Sustain Charlotte?

Shannon Binns (02:09):
Yeah, absolutely. Well, I moved here because I have family, a sister in Charlotte. And then other family in the Carolinas. We all from the Midwest, but I was the last to migrate down here. So family was actually the draw initially, but I tell people all the time, I had really low expectations for Charlotte. I think as a northerner, we have stereotypes about the south as being backwards or behind the times. I certainly had held all those stereotypes. So let's just say the bar was really low for me coming down to Charlotte and I was very, very pleasantly surprised and I moved down here sort of as an experiment to see if I could live closer to my family. I'm not thinking it would probably work for me, but I might as well give it a shot. I'm quickly finding Charlotte to be a very exciting place, in part, because of the super fast growth that you referenced.

Joe Taylor Jr. (03:13):
A little bit of background, I lived in Charlotte from 2006 to 2008 and I think I saw the beginning of that surge. And, and by the time that we had moved back to our hometown of Philadelphia, and keeping close touch with folks that are still in the area. I've been watching from a distance as new mass transit, new approaches to what's going on in what we call Uptown, which is the city center have really been transforming the center of this. But I also am aware that Charlotte is not just the city at the center, but it really encompasses a large amount of land in this metro region.

Shannon Binns (03:56):
Yeah. Well the city itself is 300 square miles, which is very, very big even by American city standards. And then of course as you say, we've got obviously a metropolitan area that encompasses in our county alone, six other towns. And then we've got the surrounding counties and we've seen explosive growth in the county and the surrounding counties. So yeah, I mean we are depending on who you ask and when you ask them we're often cited as one of the top three fastest growing metros in the country.

Joe Taylor Jr. (04:33):
So walk me through the process from the time that you moved to Charlotte to the moment you start to think there might be an opportunity here for an organization that helps the city think a little bit differently about sustainability.

Shannon Binns (04:49):
Yeah. So I moved here just before the recession and the housing bubble popped and there were cranes everywhere and we were growing at a breakneck speed. I was living in an area of Charlotte called Ballantyne, which is kind of the most suburban part of Charlotte. Fairly new part of the city, quite far from the city center, probably about 10 miles. I hadn't owned a car in 10 years from having lived in DC and New York City and Seattle. None of those cities did I need a car. And then I moved down to Charlotte to this very suburban part of the city and after, I don't know how many months- maybe a month or two, three, I broke down and had to buy a car. And it was a very painful decision for me.

Shannon Binns (05:39):
I didn't think I'd ever own a car again. I liked not owning a car and felt good about not owning a car. But I was literally, sort of, landlocked in that part of the city because there was no transit service. There weren't sidewalks on the streets, even if there were sidewalks things were so spread out that walking wasn't a reasonable thing to do. There was no bike lanes. And so that was part of it. And on top of that, I read an article I think in 2008 shortly after I'd been here, about the declining tree canopy in Charlotte. Charlotte, unlike a lot of major cities, is not on a body of water. And so the natural feature of Charlotte that makes us somewhat unIque and makes it a beautiful city, is we have an incredible tree canopy, I'm almost 50 percent of the land cover in Charlotte is trees. We're sort of a city in the forest. But that number was declining rapidly.

Shannon Binns (06:40):
Double digit loss of tree canopy in just the span of a couple of decades. And I read that article in our local paper and I thought to myself, wow, this is an unsustainable path. Where's the organization that's really advocating for a more efficient pattern of growth? That doesn't decimate the tree canopy, that makes it possible for people like me to not own a car. And when I looked around there didn't seem to be an organization that existed. So I started thinking maybe I could kind of create this organization, although I really wasn't thinking of it as an organization. It was the initial name for was going to be called Charlotte Citizens for Smart Growth. And it was just going to be sort of a hobby, if you will. I had a job. I wasn't looking to create an organization or a job more of an on the side- I'm going to just kind of create a unified voice for smarter growth. And it just evolved very quickly and sort of snowballed into an actual organization that we ended up deciding to call Sustain Charlotte.

Joe Taylor Jr. (07:47):
So tell me a little bit about what that snowball was like as you were experiencing it. Did you have to ramp up staff quickly? How did you get from you just having this concept to you building a team of people to support this mission?

Shannon Binns (08:04):
So the first thing I decided to do was I felt that it was important we have a different vision for the future of Charlotte. And so I decided to hold what I called a visioning workshop. It was called Charlotte 2030 a Sustainable Vision for our Region. I really started to cultivate an invite list of people who I felt were already working on the issues that we wanted to be part of this vision. So sort of the local experts who were working on transportation and the folks who were working in the building space and water and energy and so forth. This turned out to be an event that I put a lot of my personal time in outside of work, but I really cultivated the right people in the room, so to speak. Meaning I was able to get our mayor to do the keynote as well as the chair of our county commission.

Shannon Binns (09:04):
It was very intentional about getting that diversity of people in the room who represented the for profit, the nonprofit, academia and government in a fairly equal mix across a whole range of issues. So I don't think that had happened much in Charlotte before, where you've got lots of different people representing different organizations in the same room. Keynoted by local elected officials. And so that everybody essentially that I asked to come, came. Which I made sure to let the media know. And so we got a lot of media coverage and good turnout. And what resulted from this evenings two or three hour workshop was I turned it into a booklet called charlotte 2030 A Sustainable Vision for our Region and held a press conference. And that caught a lot of attention.

Shannon Binns (09:51):
We were able to get a lot of media to that event and I think we got covered by ten different local media outlets and all of a sudden, it was a thing. But even to take a step back, when I organized that visioning workshop I realized in order for people to RSVP whether they were coming and get information about the event, I needed a website or at least a splash page. So I threw up a webpage really quickly and on the webpage, you know, there wasn't much content at that point. It was basically information about the event. But also there was a signup- and a contact page. If you want to contact Sustain Charlotte, click here. And the emails just started rolling in from people who wanted to get together for coffee and talk about Sustain Charlotte. And of course it was just me doing this as a side project. And I actually got more email from people wanting to meet then I had time in the day to meet with. So I ended up having to ignore a lot of those emails in the early days, which told me people were really hungry for an organization like this.

Joe Taylor Jr. (10:58):
Yeah. What I find is remarkable, and it strikes me that this is something that it telegraphs to me the kind of place that Charlotte is, that it sounds like you found a lot of buy in and a lot of acceptance for this idea. In many other places, I would have expected much more resistance or maybe indifference. It sounds though that you kind of put up the signal and a lot of folks saw that it resonated with them. And in this particular instance, what they needed was a convener to pull folks together. So walk me through how this transitioned from side project into full time gig. At what point did you realize that this was going to be where you're spending most of your time?

Shannon Binns (11:48):
Yeah. Anyway, I think you're absolutely right about that observation. I think that's spot on. It was a bit of a transition. It didn't happen overnight, you know, that was that event. I mentioned the visioning workshop was in April of 2010. And then, as the year went on, I kind of spent the summer refining the vision and getting input from other people who couldn't make it to the in person event. So over several months we refined the vision. I had it professionally designed so it looked really good. And then we had that launch event with the press conference, I think in November of 2010. And then, you know, I think over the course of 2011, we tried to incorporate and kind of create an actual organization, but the reality is I was still committed to a 40 hour a week job.

Shannon Binns (12:40):
So I was just doing meetings as I could, but I hadn't made that commitment yet that this is going to be what I do all the time. I had a livelihood, so to speak, and I had this job so I didn't need to raise money. I didn't have a goal at that point to create, again, an organization with staff. That really wasn't my purpose at that point. What happened was I think in early 2012, I started to scale back my hours at my full time job. I had a very understanding boss who knew what I was doing, knew what I was up to, knew the moonlighting that was going on. He was very supportive. I think that had a lot to do with that.

Shannon Binns (13:26):
I think he could have easily come down on me. I worked from home for him, so I could, I could moonlight during the day and he really wouldn't know but he knew. And yet instead of saying you need to cut out that side project, he really helped support it and encouraged it. So he let me scale back my hours for him from 40 to 30 to 20 while I scaled up my time to working on Sustain Charlotte. And then there was a little bit of a push in that organization I was working for full time, we lost some funding and he had to cut myself and the rest of our team back, literally overnight, to half time. And that was a wake-up call. I said okay, this thing I'm doing outside of Sustain Charlotte is no longer a full time paying gig.

Shannon Binns (14:12):
Maybe I need to, you know, tear the bandaid off and jump in here and try to make a living at doing Sustain Charlotte rather than it being a volunteer gig. Having your salary cut will do that, I guess, will help give you that push. So that was really when that happened. And that was in 2012 that I cut the cord and essentially told my board, look, I want to continue to spend all this time on Sustain Charlotte but now you're going to have to pay me because I don't have another source of income. I'm quitting my other job. And that's when we started to shift and think about raising funds and doing the things that real organizations do.

Joe Taylor Jr. (14:53):
Sure. And so tell me a little bit more about your funding model because I understand that you've got kind of a hybrid mix of the expected grants and other funding that comes in, but you also do as an organization some consulting work that keeps the mission going.

Shannon Binns (15:11):
Yeah. We have a very diverse stream of revenue and I think that was a little bit out of necessity. You know, I founded this nonprofit and everyone kind of laughs when they hear, when I started it. I mean, it was in the heart of the recession. So foundations were pulling back. Individual giving was, was, was um, sort of declining. People were pulling back during the recession. So I didn't have a lot of people ready and willing to write checks for this idea. I didn't have any early investors, if you will. I really didn't have any. I didn't get my first grant until I'd been knocking on doors for, I think, over two years. I was getting lots of no's, but I really believed in this and I knew there was other people who saw the value. I just hadn't found that investor yet, if you will, or that donor.

Shannon Binns (16:02):
And I finally found a donor in Wells Fargo. Wells Fargo has a big presence here in Charlotte. We're sort of their east coast hub or HQ. They're very generous here in Charlotte with their philanthropic giving. They gave us our first $15,000 grant, which is our first grant of any size. And I literally had tears when I got notice of that grant because I had been trying so hard to get funding for this idea. So that's how it started. We're still, to this day, about 50 percent grant funded. And then the other 50 percent does come through a variety of sources. We have a number of events where we seek sponsors and sell tickets to. We have an individual membership program for people to donate as individuals, and then we have a corporate membership program for companies to make donations and be recognized as a partner.

Shannon Binns (17:02):
And then as you mentioned, we do a little bit of fee for service work. That's a smaller part of our revenue and it's not something we're doing a lot of right now, but we have in the past. So yeah, lots of different ways to raise money. And again, it was sort of out of necessity because we did not have the big seed grant or angel investors in the beginning. It was really having to scrape together little bits of money from lots of different sources to get this off the ground.

Joe Taylor Jr. (17:35):
So having scrapped all of this together and now building momentum. Tell me a little bit about the shift from that original vision statement you released to operating under a more steady state environment. Are you tracking milestones against that original statement or have you had to iterate it? How are you communicating what your vision of Charlotte can look like to all of your stakeholders?

Shannon Binns (18:05):
Yeah, that's a great question. We definitely set out to do what you said and we kind of report back on progress towards the vision. I think the closest we've come to that is- well, there's a couple of things we do. So one of the first events we started was what we now call our Charlotte Sustainability Awards. We've done it seven years now. So every April we can convene this event and we recognize those individuals and those organizations who are moving us towards that 2030 vision that we convened people to create back in 2010. So I would say at least once a year we sort of remind people of this vision and really highlight those folks who are moving us towards that vision. So that's one of the ways we kind of connect back to the vision itself.

Shannon Binns (18:56):
The other thing we did in 2014 that we're going to be doing again this year is we issued the first ever sustainability report card for our region, where we looked at those same sort of nine issues that we looked at as part of the 2030 vision, or very close to it. And we kind of did an assessment and tried to have it be very data driven. We look at actual data and we developed our own methodology to assess our progress on the sustainability front using some best practices from other cities and that included, of course not just a report card on how we're doing but recommendations. We're planning to update that. Do a five year update on that 2014 report card this year. Now that we're into 2019. So those are a couple ways we're kind of circling back to that bigger vision.

Shannon Binns (19:51):
But, there's lots of other things we do that probably are in the vision, but we don't necessarily tie back to the vision. We have a number of programs that we do, some of which are funded through grants that may last for a year or a year and a half and that, that programmatic focus on those programs, I should say change a little bit from year to year and it depends a little bit on where the opportunities are that particular year. We try to be responsive to needs in the community as well as what can we find funding to do. There's obviously a lot longer list of things we'd like to do then there are people willing to fund it. But I'd say we're still evolving. We're still trying to achieve that steady state. I don't think we're totally there yet, but it gets a little bit easier each year, a little closer each year I should say.

Joe Taylor Jr. (20:44):
I think one of the things that strikes me, again, given that part of your milestones each year involve awards and report cards, is that you really are openly tracking the progress of the community toward some shared goals. What's your sense of how that's evolving even as so many more people are moving into the community? Are you finding that folks are coming to Charlotte with sustainability in mind as a goal? Or are you having to cover that ground again and again with new waves of potential constituents and stakeholders?

Shannon Binns (21:25):
Yeah, that's a good question. I don't know if we've objectively measured that, but I think there's demographic shifts happening that I think are favorable for us. Millennials and Gen Z-ers. I mean the younger generations tend to want the types of things we advocate for more so, not exclusively but more so than older generations. So there's a lot of millennials moving to Charlotte. Obviously Millennials are becoming more dominant in terms of the workplace and just a larger growing percent of our population. So there's some natural demographic shifts that are supportIng us. Just examples of that as an organization that our focus is really around smart growth, so while we talk about lots of different issues, most of our projects and our events are really focused on the built environment. Wanting to build the idea of building the city in a more compact way where it's easier to bike and walk and ride transit, land uses are jumbled together and you can get to places you want to go without having to get into a car. That is the type of envIronment or the type of built environment that more and more people, millennials and younger are wanting.

Shannon Binns (22:47):
To answer your question, I think some of that's happening naturally. But that isn't to say we still don't have to constantly in various ways inform people about, what is smart growth, what is sustainability, why is it important? That's still a big part of our mission.

Joe Taylor Jr. (23:09):
I'd love for you to speak a little bit more on the role that you play as someone that's able to convene folks from lots of different sectors. I often speak to folks on the show who either come from a more strictly entrepreneurial background or they may come from the military or from politics, but the thing that strikes me about this is that you've got stakeholders that are in each of these silos; education, big business, small business politics. What have you found that's working for you that enables to be able to effectively keep all of these different folks pulled back to the center, so that you can be effective with your mission?

Shannon Binns (23:54):
Yeah. Another really great question. I do think that's one of the more important roles we play and sometimes I think forget that, it's that convener role is really important. And that was definitely, as you noted, our first event was really just being a convener and there was a lot of impact that came from that. I think We sometimes forget how important that is. But I think it's one of those things where we have, it's partly we just have the ability to do that. And what I mean by that is other organizations I think often are constrained in this regard. I mean, if you're a corporation, that's not necessarily in, in your business model to be a convener, right? I mean, your goal is to provide whatever product or service that you provide and do it at the least cost and the most profit, generally speaking.

Shannon Binns (24:52):
If you're government and you have obviously a lot more constraints about what you can and can't do and what you can and can't say. And while government often does play a convener role, they have lImitations in that regard and they have to worry about laws and liability. We don't have a lot of those constraints. And we can literally, at the spur of a moment, pull together an event and invite lots of different people and not have to really worry so much about the consequences. You know, is this gonna upset our constituents. Is this is going to upset taxpayers. It's going to upset our stockholders. I mean we don't have to worry about those things. So I think part of our ability to do that, just due to the nimbleness of our organization as a nonprofit. As a small nonprofit, we can be very nimble and we can do lots of things that larger organizations can't do.

Joe Taylor Jr. (25:43):
Tell me a little bit more about the distinction between conservation and sustainability. Because I've observed when I talk with business owners about sustainability, sometimes folks have this notion that it means someone's going to tell them they can't do something or they have to be constrained in a way that they can't grow the business. And my understanding is that there are ways that you can coach businesses to grow sustainably if they have a certain mindset around that community mission. Do you find that same thing? What do you find when you're speaking with business stakeholders?

Shannon Binns (26:26):
We get a lot of support from business and business owners. You know, I think there's a whole spectrum of thought on that. I mean, I think generally the ones who are supporting us, they get it and they see what we're doing as compatible with their businesses. You look at some of, for example, some of the biggest companies in Charlotte like Wells Fargo and Bank of America, and even Duke Energy. They have embedded sustainability into their organizations and they have sustainability staff. They have sustainability goals. In many ways we have businesses here in Charlotte who are ahead of the local government on the sustainability front and aren't necessarily being pushed in that direction. So that certainly helps.

Shannon Binns (27:25):
I'm just talking to an entrepreneur over lunch, or business owner who comes from, like a lot of people here, he came from Bank of America and started his own business. It's a real estate business. And as he pointed out, he has embodied sustainability practices in his business because it's more efficient. Sustainability is really about being efficient with resources, whether it's a fixed resource like land and using that land more efficiently, whIch is really what smart growth is all about. Or in the case of this business owner, he has water saving, conserving devices and all of his rentals because he's the guy that pays the water bill. And he's put programmable thermostats and all of his rental units because he's the guy that pays the electricity and gas bills. So I think what we try to highlight is that often sustainability is, at least the environmental side of sustainability, it is good not just for the environment- which was sort of the obvious benefit- but it's also most of the time economically better than the unsustainable path, if you will, as well. At least if you're the person paying the bills.

Joe Taylor Jr. (28:40):
So thinking a little bit into the future now, as you head into your second decade in this organization, what's your big goal for 10 years out from now? Especially as we're getting close to that original 2030 vision destination. Is there a point at which you roll out the banner and say we did it or does it just continue to evolve? What's your dream for Sustain Charlotte over the next 10 years?

Shannon Binns (29:13):
Well, I think that we are going to be reevaluating what the next 10 years look like for us fairly soon as an organization. We created the 2030 vision, as we've talked about. We had a 2020 vision for our organization as well. What I would say is that over the next 10 plus years, Charlotte is going to continue to have a significant growth. We're expected to add 400,000 or so people by 2040. We're adding about 50 people a day, on average. so I don't think the need for smart growth is going to abate any time soon. If anything, it will probably become more critical. Will there need to be a third party advocacy organization like ours. It's hard to imagine that that would not be needed in 10 years, but hopefully it will be less needed.

Shannon Binns (30:13):
Hopefully we'll have put In place plans and policies that are inherently supportive of smart growth. We're not there yet as a city. We're just undertaking the beginning of a new comprehensive plan planning process. Charlotte hasn't developed a comprehensive plan since the 1970's. So a lot of the growth that we've experienced over the last few decades, I don't want to say has been unplanned but it hasn't been planned with a particular vision in mind. Our city has realized over the past year we need a real vision and a real plan around how and where we build things. So my hope- and that's called Charlotte 2040 is the name of that plan which will be developed this year and into next year. So hopefully that plan will embed a lot of the principles that we've been advocating for the last 10 years. And the need for us to advocate for them will be maybe less needed, but I think charlotte will still need to grow in a smarter and smarter way every year as land becomes less available. And resources become spread across more and more people.

Joe Taylor Jr. (31:33):
What's your advice to someone who might be thinking about starting up something similar in their community? Maybe they haven't got as identifiable a resource as a sustainability group or a focal point in their organization. What would you tell someone to do next if they told you, I think I want to start my city's version of Sustain Charlotte.

Shannon Binns (31:59):
One thing I did that I didn't mention before I decided to launch Sustain Charlotte, I had one on one conversations with a lot of different people who had been living in Charlotte longer than I had and I wanted to make sure that an organization like this one was needed and didn't already exist. And maybe I just hadn't heard about it. I was pretty sure it didn't exist, but I didn't assume that. I talked a lot of people and said, hey does anything like this exist and if it doesn't, should it. And that was really informative and that confirmed for me there was a need. I didn't just use my own judgment on that. I asked a lot of people, I really spent the better part of a year talking to people one on one about that over coffee. So I think one which is sort of do that market research, to use business speak, makes sure there really is a market for what you want to do.

Shannon Binns (32:54):
I would say one mistake I made, perhaps I would have done differently. As you know, not having an MBA, not having a business background. I never had a business plan. I never put down in writing what I want to do and how I want to fund it. And so the funding piece, I think, was more difficult than it would have been had I done that when I sit down with a potential donor those early years. I didn't even have like a one pager to put in front of them at the very beginning. I just would verbally tell them all the things I had in my head and my vision of what, you know, what sustain charlotte could do. And I learned most people, if they're going to put money towards something, they need a little more than what's bouncing around inside your head. And so it may sound pretty elementary, but definitely put down in writing what you want to do and have some sort of a business plan to avoid the frustrations of having lots of people tell you no. And wondering why they're saying no. Having that, sort of, business minded approach I think is really important. And In thinking through how you're going to fund these big ideas.

Joe Taylor Jr. (34:00):
I think it's also important that when you're having so many conversations with folks, it's good to have that sense of what's the next action that you want them to take. How did you know that you were speaking to enough people, or is there a danger that you might spend so much time in that initial research phase you might not actually get to the next phase?

Shannon Binns (34:27):
Yeah, that's a tough one. I think that for me that when I would talk to people about this idea I had almost no one tell me we don't need this. I mean, there was almost universal enthusiasm for this idea. And I had this visioning workshop in mind during most of those conversations. I was able to sort of say to them, well hey, I think I'm having this visioning workshop and I'd love for you to be there. Which helped with having really good attendance at our first event. So I think that's a great point about giving people, something specific they can do, but I don't know what the magic number is there. I mean for me it was, I think, realizing there's something here. I've heard from enough people in the know that this is needed, that I should give this a go. But, you know, it's been a while now. I can't remember. Some of the details are a little fuzzy. But I think if I had been hearing from lots of people, you know, I just don't think this is needed hopefully I would have had the sense to drop it. I don't know if I would have or not it was pretty clear there was interest.

Joe Taylor Jr. (35:42):
Well, it sounds like that consensus built into something pretty remarkable and the years fly by so fast in 2030 will be here pretty quickly. But I know we've got a lot of listeners and thank you for everything that you're doing to keep the Queen City so fantastic. Shannon Binns from Sustain Charlotte, thanks so much for joining us on The Build.

Shannon Binns (36:03):
Thanks so much for having me. I enjoyed it.

Joe Taylor Jr. (36:06):
Thanks again for listening to this episode of The Build. Our talent coordinator is Nicole Hubbard. Our production team for this episode included Leah Gruber, Amelia Lohmann, and April Smith. Podfly Productions manages our post production. Our theme music is performed by Arrows and Sound. Our Director of Operations is Katie Cohen Zahniser, and our executive producer is Lori Taylor. I'm Joe Taylor jr.

Announcer (36:31):
Thanks for listening to this episode of The Build.

Joe Taylor Jr. has produced stories about media, technology, entertainment, and personal finance for over 25 years. His work has been featured on NPR, CNBC, Financial Times Television, and ABC News. After launching one of public radio's first successful digital platforms, Joe helped dozens of client companies launch or migrate their online content libraries. Today, Joe serves as a user experience consultant for a variety of Fortune 500 and Inc. 5000 businesses. Twitter | Facebook | Instagram

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