Mark Golden on Corporate Social Responsibility

I'll admit it. I am a child of the 60's. The notion of becoming a "businessman" like my father, seemed more like a life sentence than a career. I wanted to do something creative, challenging and productive -- a career in science seemed like the obvious path for me.

I have been the beneficiary of having incredible mentors, talented colleagues and an incredibly supportive family. The first lesson I learned after starting Golden Artist Colors in 1980 was that my Dad, Sam Golden wasn't a businessman either. Neither were my mother, Adele, and wife Barbara with whom we started the company. What could have been incredibly unfortunate, turned out to be a wonderful blessing. Because Sam just loved making paint for artists and being a part of the process with the most talented and creative people in the world. There was absolutely no other reason for a man in his late 60's to throw everything he had worked for into pursuing, once again, everything he had already achieved. Why not enjoy a retirement so richly deserved over a 40 year career? Because the true soul and joy of this man was in making paint, and I was quickly caught up in his passion.

So, with no business plan (thankfully my mother had a penchant for accounting) we proceeded with no preconceived ideas of what this business should be. Early on we learned some hard lessons in which we were told it was just business and to "not take it personally". But, what has made all the difference, is that everything we do is personal. Starting with bringing others into this company who take things personally and share our commitment to caring for each other, our customers, and our community.

This Company has grown because of the many people who share their passion and continually reshape us as a company. We have proven we can do good things while becoming a sustainable company.

We believe you will see our commitment in our website, our products, our research, technical and customer support, and in every connection we have with our community. I hope you get caught up in our drive, passion and enthusiasm for building a sustaining legacy of which Sam would be proud.

Wastewater Treatment

Water is the most common component in the paints and mediums we make. For every gallon of water used as an ingredient, we need another  gallon to clean the production equipment and tools used to make the paint. Ultimately, all this water returns to the ecosystem. 

To achieve greater recycling of our precious water resources we use a Reverse Osmosis (RO) filtering system that allows us to reuse over two-thirds of our cleaning water each day, reducing the need for transporting wastewater thus taking a moderate bite out of our carbon footprint. It also directly decreases our groundwater withdrawals by the amount we are able to reuse.

For more details about or water reclamation process, read this article in Just Paint.

Seconds Program

GOLDEN has an overall "green" attitude. We strive for formulations and processes that reflect our concern for the environment, including the ingredients that go in our paints. The wastewater generated while making paint, cleaning equipment, and any waste we generate throughout that process goes to use in our Seconds Program.

The Seconds Program helps support artists while reducing our waste stream. The Seconds Program provides materials that fall short of GOLDEN standards to artists, non-profit groups, and employees at little or no cost.

"Seconds" are created throughout the company. In Production, products may become contaminated. In the Lab experiments that just don't work or that are tested and terminated. Marketing has left over materials from color charts, banners, shirts, etc. Packaging occasionally cross-contaminates product when changing equipment from one product to another, products can be mislabeld, and a some product is damaged in inventory so that it can't be sent to stores.

Most of the time, these are excellent materials that miss the target by just a little bit. If you think that you or your organization may qualify for our Seconds Program, please fill out a request form and our Communications Coordinator will contact you.

Below is a list of ways in which GOLDEN inevitably generates "Seconds" through various manufacturing processes:


  • The generation of product with chunks
  • Possible cross contamination in product-to-product change over
  • Dust or other foreign materials become introduced in the process



  • Projects that don't perform as they were expected to
  • Experiments that just don't work
  • Projects that are tested and terminated



  • Partial jars from hand-painting color charts, banners, shirts, etc.
  • Contamination



  • Cross contamination from filling one product to another
  • Wrong label
  • Damage to container



  • Damaged product
  • Returned product


If you are interested in the Seconds Program and think that you or your organization may qualify, please fill out the Seconds Request Form and you will be contacted by our Communications Coordinator Jodi O'Dell.