Firespring, a Lincoln company that provides technology services to nonprofit organizations, announced that it has become the first Certified B Corporation in Nebraska.

Firespring attained the status by voluntarily meeting the standards relating to social and environmental performance set by Pennsylvania-based B Lab, a nonprofit that assesses companies for that purpose. 

Firespring said it received an initial score of 98 on the B Impact Assessment, considerably higher than the minimum score of 80 needed for certification.

Among Firespring's qualifications are that it gives employees one paid day off every month to volunteer and that it donated more than $500,000 to nonprofits last year and invested more than 500 hours to produce and conduct educational sessions for the nonprofit sector.

Firespring joins more than 1,000 companies worldwide with B Corp. status, including such well-known firms as Ben & Jerry's and Patagonia.

CEO Jay Wilkinson said in a news release that he first learned about B corporations earlier this year when state Sen. Danielle Conrad sponsored legislation to create a benefit corporation designation in Nebraska.

That legislation passed and went into effect July 18, the same day Firespring received its B Corp. certification from B Lab. Nebraska is the 23rd state to initiate such a program, which is different from and not affiliated with the B Lab program.

"We’re elated to be an early adopter in the B Corp program and will do our best to influence more businesses to join the movement,” Wilkinson said.

“I commend Firespring for their B Corporation certification," Conrad said in the release. “Being certified or legally designated as a B Corporation sends a clear signal to socially conscious consumers and investors about how these companies do business.”

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Business editor/reporter

Matt Olberding is a Lincoln native and University of Nebraska-Lincoln graduate who has been covering business for the Journal Star since 2005.

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