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Sustainability Charrette - Biographies of Invited Speakers

David Orr

David W. Orr is the Paul Sears Distinguished Professor of Environmental Studies and Politics and Special Assistant to the President of Oberlin College. The Oberlin Project was formed out of David Orr's vision of full-­spectrum sustainability: an all­‐encompassing joint venture by the town and College to create a thriving, sustainable and environmentally friendly community in Oberlin. He is the recipient of six honorary degrees and other awards including The Millennium Leadership Award from Global Green, the Bioneers Award, the National Wildlife Federation Leadership Award, a Lyndhurst Prize acknowledging “persons of exceptional moral character, vision, and energy.” He has been a scholar in residence at Ball State University, the University of Washington, and other universities. He is the author of seven books and co-editor of three others. His first book, Ecological Literacy (SUNY, 1992), was described as a "true classic" by Garrett Hardin. In 1996, he organized the effort to design the first substantially green building on a U.S. college campus. The Adam Joseph Lewis Center was later named by the U.S. Department of Energy as "one of thirty milestone buildings in the 20th century," and by The New York Times as the most interesting of a new generation of college and university buildings.

Nikki Silvestri

Nikki Silvestri is a powerful advocate and strategist for environmental and social equity for under-represented populations in food systems, social services, public health, and economic development. She had the honor of being named one of The Root's 100 Most Influential African Americans in 2014. During her time as Executive Director at Green for All, Nikki led initiatives that placed vulnerable communities at the center of the climate flight. As the former Executive Director of People's Grocery in Oakland, CA, Nikki increased the organization's profile as a national thought leader on food systems development for vulnerable communities. Nikki regularly provides thought leadership in a variety of mediums from written publication to television, including the Huffington Post, the San Francisco Chronicle, and the Melissa Harris Perry Show on MSNBC.

John Fullerton

John Fullerton is the Founder and President of Capital Institute, "a collaborative working to explore and effect the economic transition to a more just, regenerative, and thus sustainable way of living on this earth through the transformation of finance." John is also a recognized impact investment practitioner as the Principal of Level 3 Capital Advisors, LLC. Level 3's direct investments are primarily focused on sustainable, regenerative land use, food, and water issues. Through both Capital Institute and Level 3, John brings a unique theory and practice approach to financial transformation. Previously, John was a Managing Director of JPMorgan where he worked for over 18 years. At JPMorgan, he managed various capital markets and derivatives businesses around the globe, then shift in focus to private investments and was subsequently the Chief Investment Officer of LabMorgan through the merger with Chase Manhattan, before retiring from the bank in 2001. John writes the "Future of Finance" blog, which is widely syndicated on platforms such as The Guardian, The Huffington Post, CSRWire, and other publications. He has appeared on Frontline and has been interviewed by The New York Times, Bloomberg, The Wall Street Journal, and other media outlets. 

Bill Browning

Bill Browning is one of the green building and real estate industry's foremost thinkers and strategists, as well as an advocate for sustainable design solutions at all levels of business, government, and civil society. Early in his career, Bill helped build Buckminster Fuller's last experimental structure. In 1991, her founded Green Development Services at the Rocky Mountain Institute, an entrepreneurial, non-profit "think and do tank". In 1999, Green Development Services was awarded the President's Council for Sustainable Development/Renew America Prize. Bill was also a founding member of the U.S. Green Building Council's Board of Directors, and served as Chair of the USGBC's Governance Committee. He co-authored Green Development: Integrating Ecology and Real Estate; A Primer on Sustainable Building; Greening the Building and the Bottom Line; Biophilic Design; and The Economics of Biophilia and Midcentury (un)Modern. In 2006, Bill founded Terrapin with longtime partners Bob Fox, Rick Cook, and Chris Garvin to craft high-performance environmental strategies for corporations, governments, and large-scale real estate developments. 

Hunter Lovins

L. Hunter Lovins in President of Natural Capitalism Solutions (NCS), a Colorado non-profit that educates senior decision-makers in the business case of a Regenerative Economy. NCS helps companies, communities, and countries implement sustainable practices profitably. Trained as a sociologist and lawyer, Hunter is a professor of sustainable business management at Bard College and Denver University. Named a Master at the Chinese De Tao Academy, she recently helped launch the Institute for Green Investment in Shanghai. Hunter has written 15 books and hundreds of articles. The Way Out: Kickstarting Capitalism to Save Our Economic Ass (2012) succeeds her international best-selling book, Natural Capitalism. Her latest, Creating a Lean and Green Business System won the 2014 Shingo Prize for Excellence in Manufacturing Research. Hunter has won dozens of awards, including the European Sustainability Pioneer Award, the Right Livelihood Award, and the 2012 Rachel Carson Award. In 2013, she was inducted into the Hall of Fame of the International Society of Sustainability Professionals. Time Magazine recognized her a Millennium Hero for the Planet, Newsweek called her the Green Business Icon.

Greg Kats

Greg Kats is an internationally recognized leader in the energy efficiency and green building industries with deep expertise in venture capital and energy finance. As an early clean energy pioneer, Greg helped shape the field and received the first U.S. Green Building Council Lifetime Achievement Award in 2011. He founded Capital E to promote the transition to a sustainable energy future, both economically and environmentally. Capital E invests in and advises fast growth clean energy and green building firms and projects, works with large institutions on innovation, and partners with national organizations to research and document the cost-effectiveness of major new green policy initiatives. Greg is a highly acclaimed author, including Greening Our Built World. he is a founder of New Resource Bank, the country's first green bank; a founder of the American Council on Renewable Energy (ACORE); and chairs the Congressionally established advisory board guiding the greening of 500,000 federal buildings. Greg is a Partner in Cleantfeet, a cleantech investment firm delivering 17% post-tax yields, and is a partner in ARENA, am energy efficiency and renewable energy project investment firm. 

Kevin Hydes

Kevin Hydes in the founder and CEO of Integral Group, an international engineering firm specializing in the design of simple, elegant, cost-effective systems for high-performance buildings. He was the former CEO of Keen Engineering, a firm which he grew to be an internationally recognized leader in sustainable design and which was subsequently acquired by Stantec. Kevin's life and work are the subjects of the book The Ecological Engineer, written by David Macaulay and Jason McLennan. Kevin served as the chair of the USGBC from 2005 to 2006, was a founder and director of CanadaGBC, and a former chair of the WorldGBC. 

Sandy Wiggins (Charrette Facilitator)

Sandy Wiggins is Principal of Consilience LLC, a national consultancy with a mission to foster environmentally, socially and economically sustainable communities. His skillful facilitation has helped birth sustainable master plans for municipalities and institutional campuses as well as sustainable regional public policy initiatives. Sandy is Past Chair of the U.S. Green Building Council, Founding Chair of the Green Building Certification Institute, a co-author of LEED for Neighborhood Development and served on the LEED 2009 Executive Committee. He was also Founding Chair of the Philadelphia-based Delaware Valley Green Building Council. He currently serves as Chair of the Business Alliance for Local Living Economies (BALLE) and on the DC Green Building Advisory Council.