Diversion Designers, an environmental sustainability consultancy firm specializing in diverting solid waste from landfills, was founded in 2021 by Eagle County local Amber Barbella. The company implements sustainable waste systems for large public events as well as identifies and solves weaknesses within waste systems, saving businesses money while helping preserve the environment throughout the state of Colorado.
In only two years, over 150,000 pounds of recyclable and compost waste has been diverted from landfills, contamination to the recycling stream has been minimized, and thousands of pounds of fresh food has been diverted for donation.
In 2023, Diversion Designers sought to submit a bid to a City of Denver project reimplementing reusable serviceware after the need for single use during the height of the pandemic. After COVID restrictions were eased, many restaurants and other food service businesses continued to utilize consumables and the program was being initiated to reduce and control unnecessary waste.
This is when the company approached Northwest SBDC. A consultant discussed the company’s goals and two different experts reviewed the preliminary bid – the first government contract the company had ever pursued. After learning about government procurement and working with the consultant to refine the submission, Diversion Designers was successful in winning its largest contract to date.
“I probably wouldn’t have applied without the SBDC’s help, and they really boosted my confidence,” Amber said.
Recently Amber has reengaged the SBDC for direction in obtaining a women-owned certification in order to bid on more government contracts that will positively impact both the ecosystem and business communities of Colorado.