Southface Institute, a sustainable building nonprofit, held its 25th Visionary Dinner at Agnes Scott College on October 10. During the celebration, Southface presented Dawn Brown and the Mercedes-Benz Stadium (MBS) Green Team with the 2023 Argon Award for setting a new global sustainability standard for stadiums.

Brown serves as MBS’ Senior Manager of Tours and Education Programs + Sustainability. With programs and policies to divert at least 90% of waste from landfills, incineration plants, and the environment, MBS is the first professional sports stadium worldwide to achieve Total Resource Use and Efficiency (TRUE) Platinum certification for Zero Waste from Green Business Certification Inc. (GBCI).

Southface President James Marlow, Dawn Brown, and Maria Saporta pose with the 2023 Argon Award.

The MBS Green Team’s sustainability efforts include solar panels, a stormwater management system, an onsite urban garden, a food recovery program, EV charging stations, and a curriculum for grades 3-12 focused on science, technology, engineering, art, and math (STEAM).

In her acceptance speech, Brown remarked, “We are proving that sustainability is good business, and we are in the business of doing good.”

An Evening of Celebration and Purpose

The theme for this year’s Visionary Dinner was “All that Glimmers is Green,” alluding to the brilliance and value of structural solutions that benefit both people and the planet. The fundraiser grossed more than $164,000.

Visionary Dinner guests lit up the venue with glow sticks after donating.

The funds will directly support Southface’s annual programs, which aim to build a more sustainable, resilient, and equitable future. SaportaReport Founder and Executive Editor Maria Saporta hosted the event, which was sponsored by The Arthur M. Blank Family Foundation, Agnes Scott College, Atlanta Business Chronicle, Cox Enterprises, and the Ray C. Anderson Foundation.

Learn more about Visionary Dinner and give to Southface’s mission at

About the Argon Award

Southface has presented the Argon Award every year of this century to recognize visionaries whose work within the built environment offers innovative solutions to sustainability challenges. It has honored many accomplished leaders, including Ray C. Anderson, Ted Turner, Amory Lovins, Liz Ogbu, Jonathan Rose, and Ryan Gravel.

Southface’s 2023 Argon Award was presented at Visionary Dinner.
Southface’s 2023 Argon Award was presented at Visionary Dinner.

The Argon Award is named after an unassuming but hugely important element in the sustainable building world, argon, which is the non-reactive gas that fills the space between the panes of high-performance windows.


Photo Credits: Kyle Cahall, Vertical River

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