Scott Koloms, Founder
Born and raised in Louisville, KY, Scott Koloms attended the University of Louisville where he earned his BA in English and completed course work towards an MA in Literature. In addition, Scott pursued his PhD in Literature and Rhetoric at Kent State University. Upon his father’s sudden death, Scott returned to Louisville to take over Facilities Management Services (FMS), the janitorial service his father purchased just eighteen months prior.
Maintaining his desire to teach and to have a positive impact on people and communities in his new role, Scott runs FMS in a way that prioritizes the wellbeing of his employees and focuses on making a difference in their lives, all while maintaining the financial bottom line. His personal growth through mindfulness and meditation has led him to incorporate new strategies into the practices at FMS. Over the course of 18 years, FMS has sustained significant growth, increasing its staff from 30 to 850 employees between 2001 and 2019. Under Scott’s leadership, employee turnover has decreased from 120% in 2014 to 69% in 2017 in an industry with an average turnover rate of 250%.
In November of 2016, this business model allowed FMS to become Kentucky’s second certified B-Corporation and the first B-Corp janitorial service in the world. The certification requires that the business meet rigorous standards of social and environmental performance, accountability, and transparency.
In early 2017, Scott began working with others to pass legislation in Kentucky to recognize Public Benefit Corporations as legal entities, and in July of 2017 the law went into effect. FMS became Kentucky’s first Public Benefit Corporation on July 1, 2017. In May of 2017, Scott founded Canopy, a nonprofit organization aiming to make Kentucky first in good business. Its goal is to create a strong network of socially conscious and impact-driven businesses that work to make lives better in Kentucky.
In late 2018, FMS was recognized in the inaugural RealLeaders 100 – a ranking of the 100 Top Impact Companies in North America. FMS became a part of an incredible set of companies – an exciting segment of the economy that is demonstrating that every transaction has the potential for prosperity and profit to manifest.
Currently, Scott performs speaking engagements in an effort to inspire others to adopt socially conscious, impact-driven business models. His presentations focus on both his personal journey towards social entrepreneurialism and the concepts behind FMS’ for-profit social enterprise.
Scott lives in Louisville and has three children: Oliver (13), Sophia (11), and Ellie (9).
Lauren Cline, Coordinator
Lauren is a recent graduate of Western Kentucky University with a degree in Corporate and Organizational Communication.
Creativity, organizational skills, and versatility are assets Lauren brings to the roles of Coordinator for Team Canopy. Her effervescent spirit and sense of humor balanced with an unparalleled work ethic make her a welcome addition to the team.
Lauren counts it a privilege to be on the forefront of a new movement of doing good in Kentucky while surrounded by the brightest minds and warmest hearts in Louisville. She extends an invitation for one and all to drop by the Canopy office for a tour and to become part of the Canopy Family.
Ben Smock, Director of Development
Ben Smock comes to Canopy after 6 years of experience with the development team at Metro United Way Lousivlle. He holds an MBA from the University of Louisville and is a graduate of the Ignite Louisville program through Leadership Louisville. As a Louisville native, he is committed to a compassionate and thoughtful approach to statewide economic development. Ben is excited to join Canopy to help make Kentucky first in something good -good business.
Jennifer Fisher, Operations Manager
Jennifer spent over 7 years as a management consultant working with startups and Fortune 500 companies to create and implement new strategies, processes, and technology. After moving to Louisville, Jennifer followed her passion for helping others and shifted her career to the nonprofit sector where she improved fundraising processes and results at The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society and Summit Academy. Jennifer is thrilled to join Canopy and combine her corporate and nonprofit experience to help Kentucky businesses increase their social impact. Jennifer received her B.S. in Business Administration from Bucknell University.
Ben Sollee, Director of Engagement
Born and raised in Kentucky, Ben Sollee has worked steadily to promote his home state as a creative and cultural haven. As a cellist, songwriter and storyteller he has toured around the globe performing his original music. As a composer, he has created music for the stage, screen and virtual reality earning an Emmy Award for his 2018 score for Base Ballet. As a producer, he has curated hundreds of live events including experiences for the Speed Art Museum and Lincoln Center. Throughout it all, he has continued to advocate for Kentucky’s people, land and businesses.
Now, Ben is bringing his creative energy and technical experience to Canopy KY. “Over the last 17 years, I’ve been on a journey…”, says Ben about his career so far, “…learning how to connect with communities and cultures around the world. All of those experiences have lead me to the inspiring team at Canopy KY. I’m so excited to join this team of smart, engaged individuals to do good in Kentucky, so Kentucky can do good in the world.”
Elshadai Smith-Mensah, Intern
Elshadai Smith-Mensah is a senior Marketing major, Entrepreneurship and Management minors at the University of Louisville. Her involvement can be boiled down to her passion of leadership development, community building, and social enterprise. She is excited to work with Canopy because of its startup environment, the ability to collect and share social enterprise stories, and the opportunity to be a part of a bigger culture shift!