Skip to main content

First GREEN Bank, an Orlando-based bank with a global mission and deep commitment to the environment, announces today their LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) ID+C Retail v4 Platinum Certification for its downtown Orlando headquarters. The designation recognizes the location as obtaining the highest level of social and environmental performance, accountability and transparency.

To complete this project, First GREEN Bank chose The Collage Companies and their team of professionals as their design-builder. The Collage Companies is equally committed to implementing green building solutions and LEED practices, and worked with First GREEN Bank to create the first project in the world to be awarded the highest level of certification by the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) under the LEED v4 ID+C: Retail rating system.

The LEED rating system, developed by the USGBC, is the foremost program for buildings, homes and communities that are designed, constructed, maintained and operated for improved environmental and human health performance. Recently, the USGBC introduced its latest version, LEED v4, which has even stricter requirements. Receiving LEED Platinum is no easy task, but the strategic decision to renovate an existing space, instead of constructing an entirely new structure, made it even more challenging. The renovation approach was taken to reduce environmental impact, but new challenges resulted in the areas of design, engineering and construction particularly since the team was determined to meet the strictest LEED guidelines.

“While many businesses are able to provide sustainability solutions by designing a prototype building and reproducing the same building around the country, First GREEN Bank has instead historically chosen the more challenging route of designing to the needs of existing buildings,” said Fred Muscatello, President of FCM Engineering, who served as the LEED Administrator for the project and has worked on more than one hundred LEED certified projects. “Then, by not just seeking to meet minimum standards for certification, they not only strive for the highest level of certification and actually do more for sustainability than required. They also are strict about budget and return on investment. It’s exciting to work on this kind of challenge. It tests your creativity and real-world experience.”

The project implemented practical and measurable strategies and solutions aimed at achieving high performance in the areas of water savings, energy efficiency, materials selection and indoor environmental quality. The team also focused on innovation in design and, the new component for LEEDv4, location and transportation.

“We’re excited to be part of such a meaningful initiative and to have earned such a prestigious designation,” said Ken LaRoe, founder and chairman of First GREEN Bank. “Sustainability is at the heart of what we do and who we are, so being recognized as the first in the world to receive the LEED v4 ID+C: Retail Platinum Certification is an honor.”

Looking ahead, Collage Companies is sponsoring First GREEN Bank’s September event, Central Florida for Good. The event celebrates First GREEN Bank’s LEED v4 ID+C: Retail Platinum Certification, and features a “What is a B Corp?” learning session for local businesses to teach them how to run a business that meets the standards of social and environmental performance, accountability and transparency. Additional event details can be found here:

About First GREEN Bank

Since its opening in 2009, First GREEN Bank has led an impactful and successful charge to prove there is a better way to do business — one that is financially, environmentally and socially responsible. Committed to incorporating a strong sense of social responsibility into their business, founder Ken LaRoe and CEO Keith Costello are two leaders and friends in the banking industry to promote environmentally responsible behavior through First GREEN’s business and employees. Together, LaRoe and Costello plan to promote their global mission. Headquartered in Orlando, with additional locations in Mount Dora, Clermont, Ormond Beach, Winter Park, Fort Lauderdale, and, most recently, Altamonte Springs, First GREEN Bank offers personal and commercial banking services.

To learn more about First GREEN Bank, visit