Going Green
volume 8, issue 1


“Never doubt
that a small
group of thoughtful, committed
citizens can change
the world;
indeed, it’s the only thing that ever has.”

— Margaret Mead

Thanks to everyone
who voted for Valerie
in the
Green Giant
Green Award
Although she
didn’t win

to expand
Cape Fear's
Going Green,
you can still see her
video entry online:

search for
“Robertson” at



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Going Green Publications
P. O. Box 3164
Wilmington, NC 28406
send us an e-mail

YWCA Cape Fear:  26th Annual Women of Achievement Awards

Thank you,
YWCA Cape Fear
for recognizing the
achievements of
remarkable women
in our area.




About Us

Cape Fear’s Going Green magazine is a vehicle for area residents to learn about “green” projects being implemented successfully by people in their own community. And now the Going Green Web site Summer in Wilmingtonwill complement the magazine, offering timely information on events, promoting dialogue among friends and neighbors, and serving as a resource to anyone in the community who has an interest in “going green.”

Valerie L. Robertson started Cape Fear’s Going Green to fill a two-pronged information void. First, she saw that the Wilmington area had a number of individuals and small groups that were passionate about some particular aspect of promoting a green lifestyle, but very few people in the public knew about their efforts. Second, increasingly she heard people asking for — and not finding — information on local eco-friendly products and services. Eager to behave in a more environmentally-sensitive way, they were often stymied by a lack of information with a local focus. As an active member of the Cape Fear Green Building Alliance, Valerie became aware that people had more local eco-friendly options than they sometimes realized.

Valerie L. Robertson, Publisher & Editor

Valerie L. Robertson, EditorValerie’s interest in things environmental started in 1970 with the first Earth Day, when she was asked to take notes at an all-day Earth Day Symposium hosted by her high school.

In the 1980s she worked for an engineer who specialized in solar heating and cooling systems, and loved tramping around construction sites to help him note the progress of cutting-edge solar designs, performed by architects whose projects later graced the pages of Architectural Digest and Dwell magazine. She wrote freelance articles for the Passive Solar Industry Council (now the Sustainable Buildings Industry Council), attended national American Solar Energy Society (ASES) meetings, and in 1985 helped with a tour of Washington, D.C. area solar homes. Eventually discouraged about her ability to sustain herself financially while working for sustainability, she decided her strongest contribution would be to hone her editorial skills and hope to return to the industry at a later date.

Her subsequent thirty-year career as a writer and editor included helping her Valerie L. Robertson, Editorfather start a publishing company to publish his actuarial books and five years as a technical writer for Lockheed Martin. As a freelance publications specialist, she helped companies and groups as diverse as the Oracle Development Tools User Group, Coastal Carolina Press, Brunswick Nuclear Plant, Choice Caregivers, Inc., North Carolina quilt guilds, and the NBC News Channel. In 2001 she started a popular local publication — Cape Fear Arts Alive — as a guide to the local arts community. An artist herself, she has shown her fiber art in national shows, including the prestigious American Crafts Council winter Baltimore show.

Valerie has written freelance articles for the Relocation Guide, North Brunswick Magazine, and Carolina Homes & Interiors.

Valerie is an active member of the following organizations:
     • Cape Fear River Watch, Inc.
     • Earth Day Alliance
     • NC Native Plant Society – SE Coast Chapter
     • Native Plant Alliance
She is a board member of:
     • Wilmington Vegan
She is on the advisory committee for:
     •OLLI's SEA and Coffee Series (Science and Environmental Academy)

Mary K. Robertson, Eugene Contributing Editor

Mary Robertson, title xxxMary Robertson studied journalism at George Washington University, then traveled the world and enjoyed a career in outdoor retail management before settling in Eugene, Oregon, one of the nation's “greenest” cities. Here she continues her lifelong pursuit of becoming a Renaissance woman: she sings in a community choir, meets regularly with her fiction-writing group, and rings in her church handbell choir.
She tries to eat something out of her garden every month of the year — that's zero food miles! Like many Eugene residents, Mary gardens in raised beds, buys from local farmers, carries her own shopping bags and is a fan of composting. “Worms are good!” She enjoys camping, late-night domino games and working on her 1948 cottage, where she lives with her Norwegian Elkhound, Hunter and her newly adopted canine friend, Sheila.

Macy, Going Green Mascot

MacyMacy is a natural solar-heatable dog, thanks to her black upper coat. She’s figured out that she can more than double the heat gain by stretching out on the brick thermal mass of the back steps leading to her kitchen. Macy’s favorite solution to summer heat is earth-berming — she carves out a crater of earth and places her belly on soil degrees cooler than the surface of the yard. Originally from the streets of Burgaw, Macy now lives in a historic bungalow in Wilmington.


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volume 8, issue 1
Cape Fear's Going Green