P.O. Box 1155
Larkspur, California, 94977

Support and Information Line
(SAIL) 415.541.5075
A 501 (c) (3) non profit agency


May 4, 1999
For Immediate Release
P.O. Box 1155
Larkspur, CA 94977
Contact: Amy Marsh, President
(415) 541-5075 Leave Message
Who & What:
Christopher Allen, founder and former president of Consensus Development Corporation, has been awarded the first Julia Kendall Award for a Fragrance Free Workplace. This award is sponsored by the Environmental Health Network (EHN). The award honors Julia Kendall, an environmental activist who died in 1997 from complications of pesticide exposure.

When & Where:
EHN is hosting a press conference to announce the award on May 8th, from 1:00-1:30 PM at Piper Park, on Doherty, in Larkspur, CA.

Mr. Allen established a fragrance-free policy at Consensus Development Corporation, specified the use of nontoxic and fragrance-free janitorial products, and made generous use of nontoxic building materials, fresh air and natural light in the construction of his building. His new company, Alacrity Ventures in Berkeley, will be just as non-toxic and environmentally friendly.

Mr. Allen said, "I have always believed that a humane and ergonomic office environment leads to both staff satisfaction and improved productivity. My policies on a fragrance-free workplace are based on this premise. I am grateful that the Environmental Health Network is educating the public on the importance of the office environment where we spend more than half our waking lives."

Barbara Wilkie, a member of the EHN board, said, "We established this award to call attention to the issue of environmental health in the workplace. Most of our members had their first exposures to toxic chemicals while at work and many are now permanently disabled. Fragrances become a significant barrier to employment."

Story Details

Environmental Health Network (EHN)
EHN is a nonprofit organization which provides information, referrals and advocacy for people who suffer from such conditions as multiple chemical sensitivity (MCS), asthma, chronic fatigue, seizures and anaphylactic shock as a result of chemical injury and exposures. EHN was established over fifteen years ago.

Julia Kendall (1935-1997)
Julia Kendall was the founder of Citizens for a Toxic-Free Marin. She was one of the first people to call attention to the dangers of synthetic chemicals used in fragrances. [See The Work of Julia Kendall:]

Julia was also well-known for her $8.5 million claim against American Airlines for its practice of spraying pesticides on its passengers. Her claim led to an international policy revision of this practice. Despite her own ill health, Julia was a devoted advocate for people who had been chemically injured. She personally counseled over three thousand people who contacted her with complaints of health problems related to chemical exposures.

Consensus Development Corporation and Alacrity Ventures
Consensus Development Corporation was purchased by Certicom, a Canadian company, in July, 1998. Christopher Allen recently left Consensus to form Alacrity Ventures in Berkeley, CA. Alacrity Ventures is an angel capital firm, which mentors and invests in internet and other high technology startup companies.

Design of the 1999 Julia Kendall Award
This first Julia Kendall Award was created by Stephen Bauer, a San Francisco artist and furniture designer. The award is a butterfly-shaped tray finished in cracked linen and lacquer. A butterfly is depicted on the surface of the tray in tarnished silver leaf. The butterfly motif is appropriate for this award, signifying renewal or awakening. Butterflies are also extremely susceptible to the hazards of pesticides and pollution.

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View congratulatory letter at

Do you know of a fragrance-free workplace? Reach us by e-mail
Amy Marsh, President EHN
Barb Wilkie, board member, EHN (Barb's email is no longer valid, please contact EHN)

As with all organizations, EHN depends upon your contributions of time and energy, as well as your membership support.

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The Environmental Health Network (EHN) [of California] is a 501 (c) (3) non profit agency and offers support and information for the chemically injured. EHN brings you topics on this page that need your immediate attention The URL for this page is Releases/99ffwkpl.htm