We're official. Meow Wolf has a company type.
Huh? Yeah, we're a business, but what kind of company are we?
When Meow Wolf first started, way back almost 10 years ago, celebrate with us next Feb 2018, we began as an artist collective. Hiring artists, fostering community betterment, and operating environmentally were core values that built us. Those are qualities usually attributed to non-profit organizations and not for-profit corporations growing nationally such as Meow Wolf. Well, just as nobody fits one niche, neither does a business.
Meow Wolf has become a very special type - B-Corp certified.
This summer, we went through an assessment and evaluation process. Now, we’re officially one of a handful of B-Corps operating in the state of New Mexico. We’re humbled and honored to join Taos Ski Valley and Positive Energy Solar in this group. We are all businesses seeking to ‘do well by doing good’ in our communities.
Have you ever checked out the packaging on organic food? There is an official seal. That seal means that the producer has been reviewed by an independent third party. That third party verifies the producer is doing the things they should. The company adheres to standards and you can trust what you buy from them.
B-Corp certification is similar. We were evaluated based on criteria such as pay and benefits for our employees, community donations such as the DIY Fund, and environmental efforts through waterless urinals in the bathrooms and on-site recycling. Our score can be seen here.
Certification means that our steady goals are community, environment and the way we interact with one another both on the job and off. Being a B-Corp certified business means that the public can come to us for an awesome experience and also know that we're working toward more than that.
These are the aspirations of every B-Corp certified business and we feel good to be among more than 2,200 others from more than 50 countries. Have your business take the assessment, it's free to 'measure what matters.'
We do not perceive community, environment and society as grand goals. They are first goals, the humblest goals. Our hope that is other New Mexico businesses will strive for them too, or, even better, that many businesses will see that they already meet the B-Corp standards!
Alright, so Meow Wolf already had these qualities. So why bother getting the merit badge? Drew, Meow Wolf's chief financial officer explains the motivation, "Meow Wolf wanted others to know that we value more than money. We wanted to bake into the grain of our company the values inherent to who we are. Values that we want to see in the world everyday."
B-Corp values are manifesting both inside and outside the walls of Meow Wolf's Rufina Street location. Aside from monthly neighborhood clean-ups, providing a safe nighttime event venue, recycling, clean energy, employing local performers at competitive rates to be their best selves and a learning center for children and teens, Meow Wolf fosters arts across Santa Fe, New Mexico and across state borders.
We began an annual DIY fund that looks to support artist collectives who make positive impacts on their communities. Recipients of these funds are not restricted to Santa Fe or even New Mexico. Any artist collective that demonstrates community values and provides much needed space for community and artist expression is eligible for the annual funds.
Meow Wolf supports community endeavors as well. If not with funds, then by being there or providing advice. We offer our facilities for community support throughout the year. Recently, Meow Wolf served as a gathering point for Esperanza Shelter's school supplies and backpack drive.Now that we're officially a B-Corp we will engage with these goals with an even stronger dedication.
Photographs by Kate Russell.