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  HRF's first annual Herbal Benefits Banquet a tremendous success

On March 2, close to 150 people joined the Herb Research Foundation for the First Annual Herbal Benefits Banquet at the Omni Interlocken Resort in Broomfield, Colorado. Guests participated in an exciting culinary event featuring fresh herbs at every course, met Tom and Kate Chappell from Tom's of Maine®, and listened to a captivating presentation by internationally respected motivational speaker Peter McLaughlin. "We were pleased and honored by the turnout from Colorado's business community. Everyone enjoyed hearing from two visionaries in the changing face of American business," commented HRF President Rob McCaleb.

The creative feast prepared by Chef Thomas Ryan of the Omni Resort was one of the highlights of the evening. Guests were delighted by the bright flavors and fragrance of fresh purple basil, chervil, garlic chives, rosemary, garlic, peppermint, and other culinary herbs that infused the meal. As they dined, guests had a chance to learn more about the healthful foods they were consuming through a series of lively information cards located on each table. The cards outlined the benefits of natural compounds such as anthocyanosides in blueberries, polyphenols in red wine - and even the catechins contained in chocolate.

Rob McCaleb presented HRF's First Annual Merit Award to Tom and Kate Chappell from Tom's of Maine® for their commitment to creating high-quality natural products in a socially responsible manner. Tom Chappell returned the honors during a brief acceptance speech, stating, "We need the Herb Research Foundation's work because people need good information about herbs." He also affirmed his company's commitment to supporting HRF's international development work in Africa by purchasing herbs such as hibiscus from African farmers. Tom Chappell is the author of Managing Upside Down and founder of the Boulder, Colorado-based Saltwater Institute, a nonprofit organization that teaches business leaders how to create a values-centered enterprise. Kate Chappell is an artist and visionary businesswoman who, together with Tom, built the company into one of the industry's leading natural body care companies. McCaleb noted, "The strength of Kate and Tom working together is deeply inspiring at a time when balancing relationships and work has become such a daunting challenge."

Keynote speaker Peter McLaughlin gave an engaging presentation, sharing his unique strategies for "igniting energy, defusing stress, and power-boosting performance" in the workplace. McLaughlin is the author of CatchFire and serves as Senior Vice President of Corporate Programs for FitnessAge™, a company that combines health education with state-of-the-art technology to inspire people to make positive lifestyle changes. Drawing from his experience as a tennis pro, Wimbledon coach, and successful business consultant, McLaughlin addressed the importance of exercising, eating energy-boosting foods, and cultivating "learned optimism" and humor . "Nothing can ever be solved with seriousness," he told a receptive audience, proving his point with a liberal sprinkling of cartoons and jokes throughout the presentation. McLaughlin gave each guest a gift certificate for a free FitnessAge™ assessment at a local health club, challenging them to determine their "fitness age" (as opposed to chronological age) - and then to improve it over the next three months. HRF looks forward to another fun and successful banquet next year!   - Krista Morien

Special thanks to the following organizations and individuals for their generous support:

Sponsors and Silent Auction Donors

Blue Cat Studios, Allyson McDuffie
Boulder Hemp Company
Carter Chase
Cattail Bob
Celestial Seasonings
Creative Memories Photo Preservation, Lynette Loew
Dae Ann Knight Design
Desert Canyon Farm and Learning Center
Frontier Natural Products Co-op
Gaias's Essence
Horizon Organic Dairy
Hotel Boulderado
Tatjana Krizmanic
Sandra Leigh
Lincoln Graphics
Brigitte Mars
Kirsten Martin
The Max Fitness Center
Nature's Apothecary
The Pampered Chef, Carole Carroll
Robert Power
Precious Aromatherapy
Rialto Café
Rocky Mountain Center for Botanical Studies
Sounds True
Third Street Chai
UniTea Herbs

Deluxe Patrons

Herbs of the World, Inc.
Tom's of Maine
Dr. and Mrs. Glenn Appelt
Dr. Alan Green
Janice Hall
Kit Kyle
Mr. and Mrs. John Layden
Mr. and Mrs. Harold Libster
The Chemins Co., Inc.
James McChesney
Kristi Ormsbee
Colleen Ostlund
Linda Roth
China Treasures Herbs
Porsche Young

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