Gold House and Garnier Announce Recipients of First-Ever Gold Green Grant to Fund Sustainability in Asian Pacific Entrepreneurship

Published May 16, 2024

Two Asian entrepreneurs receive a total of $30,000 and executive mentorship to further sustainable business practices.

NEW YORK, NY / ACCESSWIRE / May 16, 2024 / Gold House, the leading Asian Pacific cultural ecosystem, and Garnier USA, a leading global hair color, hair care and skin care beauty brand, are thrilled to announce the recipients of the first-ever Gold Green Grant - winner Lauren Choi of The New Norm and runner-up Nadya Okamoto of August. The grant will provide a combined $30,000 in funding, mentorship from Garnier's executive leadership, and invaluable amplification opportunities from Gold House to empower Asian Pacific entrepreneurs dedicated to sustainability. The Gold Green Grant is part of a broader partnership between Gold House and Garnier USA to advance the affirming representation and economic empowerment of the Asian Pacific diaspora, which includes collaborative print and digital campaigns during Asian Pacific American Heritage Month.

Over two-thirds of business leaders believe that incorporating sustainability into their businesses is both a moral and business imperative. In fact, after financial targets, "[s]ustainability has become companies' most important business objective for the next five years." However, startups face much higher barriers than larger, more established companies in the sustainability journey, including financial hindrances and technical know-how. Garnier and Gold House launched the Gold Green Grant to address this gap and provide Asian Pacific entrepreneurs with investment, resources, and amplification to strengthen their sustainable business practices.

"We're thrilled to announce recipients of the Gold Green Grant in partnership with Gold House to use our resources as a brand to support the AANHPI community," said Amy Whang, President of Garnier, Maybelline, and essie U.S. "With our objective at L'Oréal USA to be the most inclusive beauty leader, we recognize the impact we are able to make in diverse communities and are excited to continue to expand in years to come."

Choi will receive $20,000, mentorship from Whang; an invitation to the exclusive and definitive Asian Pacific gathering Gold Gala; and promotion across both Garnier and Gold House platforms. Choi is the founder of The New Norm, an apparel and materials company pioneering sustainable fashion with innovative recycling technology, transforming hard-to-recycle materials like Solo cups, ocean plastics, and old fishing nets into premium yarns and fabrics. The New Norm is committed to a greener future and offers a vertically integrated approach from yarns to 3D knit apparel.

"We are incredibly grateful for this opportunity. The Garnier Gold Green Grant will significantly accelerate our development timeline. Creating a new technology and scaling a process comes with challenges and obstacles. We are going to use this grant to conduct important commercialization trials in the next couple of months that will improve our recycling, yarn production, and 3D knitting," said Choi.

Okamoto, the runner-up, will receive $10,000, promotion across both Garnier and Gold House platforms, and access to the invite-only Gold House x Billboard Founders Party. Okamoto is the Co-Founder of August, a lifestyle period brand that creates biodegradable and plastic-free pads and tampons for all who menstruate. August is a certified One Percent For the Planet Member, an international organization of businesses that commit 1% of their annual revenue to environmental causes, and also offsets their total plastic footprint through collection and recycling initiatives.

"We are so thankful for this recognition and eager to get back to work furthering our sustainability goals. This grant helps us as a small business continue to prioritize sustainability in everything we do - from building out our supply chain to product development, and content education," said Okamoto.

The two recipients were selected from an open call for applications, which was whittled down to 10 finalists by a selection committee consisting of Garnier and Gold House leaders. The public was then asked to vote on the finalist whose story most resonated, and this vote contributed to the final selection of the recipients. The other eight finalists include:

"We are thrilled to work with Garnier USA as our first national beauty partner, given our joint commitment to advancing socioeconomic change and sustainability efforts. Together, we are increasing inclusive beauty representation and investing in economic empowerment for the Asian Pacific diaspora and beyond," said Rose Yan, Vice President of Marketing for Gold House.

The Gold Green Grant is part of a broader partnership between Garnier and Gold House to invest in and champion the socioeconomic advancement of the Asian Pacific diaspora. To ensure affirming representation of the Asian Pacific diaspora alongside economic empowerment, Garnier and Gold House collaborated on Garnier's Asian Pacific American Heritage Month campaign, which featured pervasive inclusion of Asian Pacific creatives, not just in front of the camera but also importantly at every level of decision-making - from styling to casting to creative direction. The campaign will be displayed nationwide in Walgreens throughout the month of May.

Within L'Oreal, Garnier is dedicated to providing high-quality beauty products that cater to individuals of all skin and hair types, genders, identities, cultures, and ages. This commitment is reflected in the brand's inclusive formulations, efforts to showcase diversity in advertising, proactive steps to address bias in algorithms, fostering diverse teams at all levels, and collaborating with responsible suppliers who uphold similar values. Garnier has incorporated strategy across all channels to support DE&I efforts, including Hispanic Heritage Month, Black History Month, Asian American Awareness Month, and more.

For more information about the Gold Green Grant, visit

About Gold House:

Gold House is the leading cultural ecosystem that unites, invests in, and champions Asian Pacific creators and companies to power tomorrow for all. Our innovative programs and platforms include membership systems and events to fortify relationships among the Asian Pacific community and with other marginalized communities (#StopAsianHate); first-of-its-kind investment vehicles and accelerators to propel the next generation of top Asian Pacific founders, creatives, and leaders (Gold House Ventures, Creative Equity Fund); and industry-leading research, consulting, and marketing to promote authentic and affirming portrayals (Gold Story Consultation, Gold Open, Gold List, A100 List). To learn more, visit or follow @GoldHouseCo on Instagram, Facebook, X/Twitter, Threads, and LinkedIn.

About Garnier USA:

Garnier, a L'Oréal USA brand, was developed in 1904 in France by hair care expert Alfred Amour Garnier and is now present in more than 65 countries worldwide. Following the launch of Garnier in the United States in 1999 with Nutrisse hair color, the brand has continued to develop cutting-edge beauty products. The entire collection of Garnier brands available in the U.S. includes Nutrisse, Fructis hair care, and Fructis Style, Olia hair color, Color Sensation hair color, SkinActive, and Whole Blends hair care. For more information, visit or follow us on Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, and Snapchat @GarnierUSA.

Contact Information

Rose Yan
VP of Marketing

SOURCE: Gold House


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