RIA firm First Affirmative Financial Network has been recognized by B Lab as one of the 15 "Best for the World" companies for creating a positive worker impact with its focus on impact investing.

B Lab released its first 'Best for the World' lists recognizing companies creating the most positive overall social and environmental impact on Wednesday.

First Affirmative and the other "Best for the World" businesses earned a score in the top 10 percent of all Certified B Corporations and scored considerably higher than nearly 2,000 other sustainable businesses that have completed the B Impact Assessment, which assesses overal corporate impact.

Colorado Springs, Colo.-based First Affirmative Financial Network offers investment consulting and asset management services through a nationwide network of investment professionals who specialize in serving socially conscious investors.

In selecting First Affirmative, B Lab recognizes it as among the 15 top U.S. corporations in terms of positive worker impact, one of three U.S. financial services companies, and one of three Colorado corporations -- along with Rally Software and Namaste Solar -- to achieve this designation.

"First Affirmative Financial Network is a leader in the global movement to redefine success in business; it is among the best in the world," said Jay Coen Gilbert, co-founder of Berwyn, Pa.-based B Lab, the nonprofit organization that governs the B Impact Assessment and certifies B Corporations.

In addition to First Affirmative, B Labs also awarded top honors to financial services firms San Francisco-based Partnership Capital Growth and Boise, Idaho-based The Caprock Group.

The "Best for the World" lists are featured in the just released 2012 B Corp Annual Report. B Lab also released separate lists of the "Best for the Environment," "Best for the Community," and "Best for the Workers."

First Affirmative had already been selected in late 2011 as one B Corp.'s first 500 "Benefit Corporations" in the U.S. and one of only 30 in Colorado, said First Affirmative spokesman Patrick Mitchell. "First Affirmative had been recognized for meeting the criteria for being a B-Corp. member,'' he said.

First Affirmative President Steve Schueth, said "unlike traditional corporations, B Corporations consider the full impact of all internal decisions on their employees, suppliers, community, consumers, and the environment-and are legally allowed to do so."

The B Impact Assessment is a rigorous, comprehensive and comparable independent assessment of overall corporate impact and indicates the relative value businesses create for society by comparing nearly 200 individual metrics on corporate impact on workers, consumers, suppliers, community, and the environment.

Certified B Corporations must meet rigorous standards of social and environmental performance; legally expand their corporate responsibilities to include consideration of stakeholder interests; and build collective voice through the power of the unifying B Corporation brand.

-Jim McConville