The Torch - February 2014

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The Torch Offical Publication of Green Builder Coalition


Appearances

Green Builder® Coalition to Make ACI Debut in Detroit

2014 ACI Conference

The Green Builder® Coalition is honored to be co-presenting an educational session at the annual ACI Conference. The session, "Building A Fit: Expanded Opportunities for Raters in Existing & New Homes", will be delivered by our Technical Director (and HERS rater) Laureen Blissard. Her co-presenters will be Emelie Cuppernell and Ethan MacCormick of Performance Systems Development, Inc.

The 90-minute session takes place on Wednesday, April 30th from 1:30 – 3:00pm. ACI hosts the leading educational and networking events in the home performance industry in partnership with nationally-renowned experts, offering the most comprehensive and innovative agenda. The conference will take place April 29 – May 1 in Detroit, MI at the Cobo Center in downtown Detroit. For more information, please click here.


Upcoming Industry Events

Students

The Annual Sustainability Tradeshow

Industry conferences and trade shows are still in full swing, even as the building season begins in many parts of the country. Below are a few opportunities for you to learn and network.


Earth Day Texas

2014 Earth Day TexasEarth Day Texas is an annual, outdoor festival seeking to elevate environmental awareness and influence the way Texans think, live and work. The family-friendly and free-admission event allows leaders in the corporate, academic and non-profit worlds to unite and show Texans how green lifestyle choices can lower their cost of living, improve their health, and help save the environment. The conference will take place April 26-27 at Fair Park in Dallas from 10am-6pm each day. For more information, please click here.


International Green Construction Code Hearings

IgCC logoThe 2016 edition of the IgCC will be discussed April 27 – May 4 at the committee action hearings in the Memphis Cook Convention Center. The new cdpACCESS system will be live at the April 2014 Committee Action Hearings. cdpACCESS, which includes remote voting, allows greater participation in code development because participants can be involved from just about anywhere there is Internet access. Registration, both online and in-person, is free. For more information, please click here.


SIPA Annual Meeting and Conference

2014 SIPA Annual Meeting and ConferenceDuring this two-day conference, attendees will hear from leaders in the green building movement (including Green Builder® Coalition Co-Founder Ron Jones), get pertinent industry updates, and sit in on targeted breakout sessions that offer builders, architects and SIP manufacturers meaningful content and valuable networking opportunities. Head down to the Ft. Lauderdale Marriott Pompano Beach Resort & Spa on April 29 & 30 to attend. For more information, please click here.


ACI National Conference

ACI hosts the leading educational and networking events in the home performance industry in partnership with nationally-renowned experts, offering the most comprehensive and innovative agenda. The conference will take place April 29 – May 1 in Detroit, MI at the Cobo Center in downtown Detroit. For more information, please click here.


Coverings

2014 CoveringsThis is the premier international trade fair and expo dedicated exclusively to showcasing the newest in ceramic tile and natural stone. The exposition also serves as a valuable resource for continuing education for all categories of attendees, with informative, accredited seminars and live demonstration sessions conducted throughout the four days and all free of charge. This event is held at the Las Vegas Convention Center from April 29 – May 2. For more information, please click here.


Impact Series

Wes Jackson

The next edition of the Impact Series will take place on Tuesday, May 20th. The guest will be Wes Jackson, Founder & President of The Land Institute.

Wes Jackson is a recipient of the Pew Conservation Scholars award (1990), a MacArthur Fellowship (1992), Right Livelihood Award (Stockholm), known as “Alternative Nobel Prize” (2000), and the Louis Bromfield Award (2010). In 2007, he received the University of Kansas Distinguished Service Award. Garden Club of America awarded him the Elizabeth Craig Weaver Proctor Medal in 2012.

In addition to lecturing nationwide and abroad, Dr. Jackson is involved outside The Land Institute with a variety of projects, including being a Post Carbon Institute Fellow.

Join us for another exciting and interactive webinar as we discuss the future of farming and agriculture. The webinar starts at 1pm CT. To register for free, please click here.

For past webinars, you can visit the archives at: http://www.greenbuildermedia.com/impact-series-archive


As I Am...

Tom Breunig

Tom BreunigEach issue, we’ll sit down with a green building professional to gain a personal insight into their motivations, inspirations and experiences. This issue, we feature Tom Breunig, marketing manager.

The Torch: What motivated you to enter the sustainability industry?

Tom Breunig: I actually came to it sideways.  After grad school in East Asian Studies, I went into publishing and then fell into technology PR and marketing for many years. I had a number of semiconductor sensor clients and I became very interested in what sensors could do for environmental monitoring, energy conservation, and what they call energy harvesting (for example, capturing kinetic movement and translating it into electrical energy).

After the tech market dried up, I found a rewarding position as director of marketing at Earth Advantage Institute in Portland, which has a dynamic new-home certification program, a green builder education department, and a newly formed residential energy efficiency group. I was able to leverage EAI’s successful energy program sales and their status as a think tank to get them on the map nationally.

I came to Neil Kelly in early 2012 as corporate marketing manager because of the company’s reputation for leading-edge sustainability efforts and President Tom Kelly’s commitment to community in each of its Northwest locations (Portland, Seattle, Eugene, Bend). I am proud that we just obtained B Corp status, which is like a third-party certification of our triple-bottom line mission. I handle all outbound marketing for our 4 divisions (design-build remodeling, residential energy & solar, handyman, and a DECLARE-labeled cabinetry line) as well as all web content. I was able to hire a staff of 3 gifted marketing specialists, including an online content producer in charge of web, video and social media.

TT: Describe your first green project. Did you encounter any hurdles on that first project? (If yes, how did you overcome them?)

TB: I’m not on the front lines, so I just cheer on our teams and try to provide tools to educate our prospects about the value and benefits of healthy, safe and durable construction, and how Neil Kelly can help them achieve a healthier and more energy efficient home. Homeowner education remains the key challenge: we can always do better in expressing the value proposition for greener materials. Many clients still believe that more sustainable materials and systems are more expensive, which is not always the case anymore.

TT: What building product or technique do you think will be the next “game changer”?

TB: One game changer in creating healthy and net-zero homes may actually be embedded sensor networks that display energy behavior, as well as energy efficiency and indoor air quality. A company here in Portland recently developed a system that automatically identifies the power signature of any appliance so you could see how often your teenager is using the blow dryer or opening the refrigerator door. Overall, any game changer may not be a single product or technique but rather a combination of best practices and measurement technologies that allow us to truly evaluate the way we build.

TT: Who inspires you the most?

TB: Nicholas Kristof, the New York Times columnist. He doesn’t just write opinion pieces, he lives them by getting out and talking to people all over the world and collecting the best ideas that have been shown to work in practice.

TT: If you had it to do over again, what profession would you choose?

TB: Sustainability policy analyst or sustainability educator working with developing nations, and part time musician. Maybe I would combine the two interests. I’ve always wanted to go to the Desert Festival, a world music festival in the Sahara outside of Timbuktu.

TT: What do you enjoy the most when you’re not at work?

TB: I’ve had a blast taking guitar lessons this past year, and I really enjoy spending time with my young adult kids when they are home from school. And travel, of course. We just visited my oldest daughter in Nicaragua, where she was studying, and we learned a lot about political and social issues there. Do you know they are planning to build a second, bigger “Panama canal” in Nicaragua, financed by a Chinese company? The environmental implications could be horrendous and they might start construction as soon as this year.

I also retain an interest in green building R&D and try to monitor new products that we might want to use.

TT: What’s the most important piece of advice you’d like to pass along to others?

TB: Set a personal and professional goal each day, and keep your sense of humor.


Job Opportunities

Below you will find job postings for green collar jobs around the country.

If you have a job opening you’d like to list here, please contact the Green Builder® Coalition at info@greenbuildercoalition.org.


CLEAResult is currently hiring energy-efficiency engineers, consultants, analysts and coordinators. Candidates should have experience conducting energy audits, identifying energy-efficiency opportunities, using energy-modeling tools, performing energy-savings calculations, and/or developing measurement & verification (M&V) plans. P.E. and/or C.E.M. certification is preferred but not required, and some positions won’t need such credentials. To view their 66 job listings throughout the United States and Canada, please click here.

CLEAResult is an energy-optimization firm that designs, develops and implements energy-efficiency programs on behalf of utility companies across the country.  Our programs are designed to help utilities manage load growth and meet legislative requirements by identifying energy-savings opportunities and implementing energy-efficiency improvements.  CLEAResult is ranked on Inc. Magazine’s list of the 500 fastest-growing private companies in the U.S. for the second year in a row.

If you are interested in any of the above job openings, please contact:

James Hatheway
Recruiter
(512) 259-2383

jhatheway@clearesult.com

Or apply via this website: www.clearesult.com


The Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) currently has 96 jobs listed on their site. Please note the closing date on the position prior to applying. Most are located in their home state of Washington, though there are 6 posted positions in College Park, MD and 1 in Albuquerque, NM. If you have any interest in these highly scientific roles, please visit their career site by clicking here.

The Midwest Energy Efficiency Alliance (MEEA; www.mwalliance.org) is a collaborative network advancing energy efficiency in the Midwest to support sustainable economic development and environmental preservation. They have 2 job openings:
#1: Program Associate: The Program Associate will work under the supervision of the Program Manager to support, develop, and expand MEEA’s residential programming and Midwest Emerging Program Partnerships.  This position will provide administrative support for a variety of programs including, but not limited to, HVAC SAVE (www.hvacsave.com), Illinois Home Performance (www.illinoishomeperformance.org), the Midwest Home Performance Collaborative, Appliance Rebates and Recycling, Behavioral Programs and Building America Residential Research.

Candidate must have a Bachelor’s degree with 1-2 years’ experience in a professional environment. Building science/HVAC training or certification (e.g. BPI, NCI) is a plus, but not required. To view the full listing, please click here.

The compensation for this position will be commensurate with experience. MEEA is an equal opportunity employer. MEEA’s office is in Chicago, in a LEED Gold space in the Civic Opera Building in the Loop.

Submit cover letter, resume and salary requirements by Wednesday April 9, 2014 via email to jobs@mwalliance.org with Subject: “Program Associate – Residential”. Candidates who do not submit all three items will not be considered. Candidates considered for interviews will be asked to provide writing samples and three references. No phone calls please.

#2: Policy Intern: MEEA seeks interns on an ongoing, as-needed basis to support a variety of energy efficiency policy and communication initiatives. Internships are unpaid but offer a meaningful opportunity to develop your skills and ideas in a collegial, small-office environment. Length of internship can vary. Hours are flexible but require a commitment of at least 10 hours per week.

They are currently considering interns for the winter of 2013 and spring 2014.

MEEA is an equal opportunity employer. MEEA’s office is in Chicago, in a LEED Gold space in the Civic Opera Building in the Loop.

Submit cover letter, letting us know what area(s) of our policy or program work you are interested in, and resume to internship@mwalliance.org.


Southern Energy Management (SEM), the Southeast’s leading provider of sustainable energy solutions, is looking to fill 3 positions; two full-time and one part-time.

#1: Building Performance Sales Rep (Charlotte): This is an outside sales position, providing energy efficiency services to the building community. This position is based out of Charlotte, NC and is responsible for building and establishing successful and sustainable territory in the central and western NC region. Responsibilities of this position include performing outside sales calls as well as inside sales calls to meet or exceed sales goals.

Qualifications include:

* Proficient in Microsoft Office products
* Ability to understand and communicate basic home energy use principles
* Familiar with Salesforce or other CRM
* Must be willing to travel out of the local area at least 10% of the time
* Experience selling into Builder Channels (home improvements, repairs, new home construction for example)

To view the complete job listing and to apply, please click here.

#2: Building Performance Technician (Raleigh): This position will be based out of Morrisville. A Building Performance Technician is expected to assist and lead in the collection of field data for residential new and existing single family and multifamily housing. Included in the collection of field data are visual inspections and performance testing. Visual inspections include the inspection in new housing for HERS Ratings, ENERGY STAR compliance, and inspection in new housing for various Green Building certifications programs including: NAHB Green Building Certification Program, LEED for Homes, Water Sense, and Earth Craft. Performance Testing includes, but is not limited to, the testing of whole building leakage, HVAC duct system leakage, exhaust fan flows, room pressures, and HVAC flow testing. Having the HERS Rater and/or BPI Building Analyst Professional designation is definitely preferred, but is not required.

To view the complete job listing and to apply, please click here.

#3: Building Performance Technician (Part-Time Wilmington): This position will be based out of our Morrisville office with the majority of work days beginning from the Building Performance Technician’s home address. This position will predominantly serve the Jacksonville/Wilmington/Myrtle Beach Markets.

A Building Performance Technician is expected to assist and lead in the collection of field data for residential new and existing single family and multifamily housing. Included in the collection of field data are visual inspections and performance testing. Visual inspections include the inspection in new housing for HERS Ratings, ENERGY STAR compliance, and inspection in new housing for various Green Building certifications programs including: NAHB Green Building Certification Program, LEED for Homes, Water Sense, and Earth Craft. Performance Testing includes but is not limited to the testing of whole building leakage, HVAC duct system leakage, exhaust fan flows, room pressures, and HVAC flow testing. Having the HERS Rater and/or BPI Building Analyst Professional designation is definitely preferred, but is not required.

To view the complete job listing and to apply, please click here.


The Northwest Energy Efficiency Alliance (NEEA) is an alliance of more than 100 Northwest utilities and energy efficiency organizations working on behalf of more than 12 million energy consumers. They are looking to fill the following 4 job openings:

#1: Project Manager, Residential/Mass Market Sector: This position manages a variety of projects critical to the execution of market transformation initiatives. The Project Manager serves as an integral member of NEEA’s cross-functional initiative teams and is responsible for effective project execution that meets initiative timelines and goals. He or she works closely with initiative managers to ensure that they are aware of project progress and that project milestones are met.

Candidates should be adept at project management, project accounting and possess great communication skills. This position will also supervise and manage contractors. They seek candidates who possess a bachelor’s degree, preferably in Business, Social Science, Environmental Studies, Architecture, Building Science and/or Engineering. An MBA or other advanced degree is preferred. To view the full listing, please click here.

#2: Stakeholder Relations Manager: This position is responsible for ensuring high-functioning business relationships between NEEA and its key stakeholders. In addition to leadership and accountability for NEEA’s stakeholder relationship activities, this person plays a key leadership role inside the organization developing NEEA staff knowledge and understanding of stakeholder perspectives; supporting an effective and efficient stakeholder relationship management system; and ensuring standards for excellence in stakeholder interactions.

Candidates should have the following:

  • Bachelor’s degree or equivalent industry experience required; advanced degree a plus.
  • Minimum 10 years professional experience with at least 5 years in account management and/or member relationship management.
  • Utility and/or energy efficiency industry experience required.
  • Demonstrated success with account management and cross-functional team leadership.

To view the complete job listing, please click here.

#3: Planning Analyst: This position’s primary role is to perform economic modeling to quantify the value delivery of NEEA’s initiatives. The analyst is an integral part of an interdisciplinary team dedicated to bringing affordable energy efficient products and services to market in a sustainable manner. This is a highly responsible position that requires top-notch quantitative modeling, critical thinking, and communications skills.

This is a highly responsible position that requires top-notch quantitative modeling, critical thinking and communications skills. The analyst will need to be highly inquisitive to learn new products and services within the energy efficiency industry. The analyst will be responsible for ensuring that work products are accurate, defensible and delivered in a timely manner to support periodic reporting needs and organizational decision-making.

NEEA is looking for the following qualifications:

* Bachelor’s degree in, economics, finance, business or public administration, or a closely related field required. Master’s degree preferred.

* Five years of professional experience in financial planning or analysis, operations research or economic analysis and modeling required.

To view the complete job listing, please click here.

#4: Program Manager, Commercial Sector: This role serves as the business manager of the commercial lighting market transformation initiatives, and responsible for assuring the overall planning, resourcing and execution of the assigned Market Transformation initiatives. The Program Manager coordinates and leads cross-functional team efforts to advance and implement Market Transformation initiatives and is accountable to deliver the associated business results.

Team leadership, initiative planning and management, and communication, reporting and stakeholder engagement are all skills needed for this position. They are also seeking someone with the following background:

* A minimum of 7 years of experience managing complex programs in a team environment. New product development experience a plus.

* BA/BS Degree with major course work in business, economics or engineering; MBA or related degree a plus

* Experience managing programs comprised of multiple projects required.

* Experience managing contracts and contractors to achieve project objectives required.

* Experience and knowledge in one or more of NEEA’s strategic markets, commercial buildings and systems preferred.

To view the complete job listing, please click here.
NEEA is an equal opportunity employer. They offer pre-tax transportation benefits, professional development funds, a generous healthcare package, and retirement savings with employer matching. They also offer a flexible 9/80 schedule to help their employees achieve a better work-life balance.

Noesis is the world's leading web-based platform for energy efficiency projects, used by Commercial and Industrial energy professionals to unlock billions of dollars of potential energy savings by doing more projects. They are looking for someone to become their next Manager of Energy Project Finance.

This position will coordinate internal project and credit reviews on potential borrowers, structure loan financing terms, lead negotiations with candidate contractors and customers, coordinate loan approvals internally and with Noesis' financing partner(s), coordinate documentation throughout the loan approval cycle from eligibility through commitment and disbursement, and ensure ongoing project monitoring and cash flows. Noesis is looking for a proactive energy efficiency financing professional who can identify and resolve issues in managing an effective multi-project financing facility, while maintaining strong credit standards and building repeat relationships with contractors and customers.

Successful candidates will have an undergraduate degree in Finance, Business or Engineering, with an MBA preferred. Six or more years of experience in energy efficiency and/or solar project financing for commercial and industrial customers is requested.

The position is based in Austin, TX. To view the full job listing, please click here.

TRC Energy Services is an engineering, consulting, and construction management firm that provides integrated services to the environmental, energy, infrastructure, and real estate markets. Our multidisciplinary project teams provide turnkey services to help our clients implement complex projects from initial concept to delivery and operation. A broad range of commercial, industrial, and government clients depend on us for customized and complete solutions to their toughest business challenges.

They are seeking an Energy Analyst/Project Manager in Ann Arbor or Grand Rapids, MI. This role will support residential and commercial energy efficiency and green building programs throughout the state of Michigan. Candidates must possess strong technical capabilities, including knowledge of building systems, energy efficiency, green building and sustainability, as well as excellent communication skills. The Energy Analyst/Project Manager will work collaboratively with clients to develop market-transforming programs that increase energy efficiency in buildings. This individual will lead recruitment, auditing, and verification for the whole-building component of a multifamily utility energy efficiency program in Michigan.

Qualifications include:

* Bachelor's degree in Architecture, Mechanical Engineering, or other building-related field, and a minimum of 2 years of related experience.

* Expert knowledge of building science, including energy audit experience.  Experience with the multifamily building sector preferred. 

* BPI Multifamily Building Analyst, AEE’s CEA certification, or equivalent preferred.

* Experience in whole building Energy Conservation Measure (ECM) work scope implementation/oversight: including measures such as air infiltration reduction, HVAC upgrades, motors, lighting, building shell/envelope, and Demand-Side reduction.

The position is a full time, permanent position. Starting salary range is market competitive, and is dependent on qualifications and experience. TRC is an equal opportunity employer, with a benefits package including health insurance, and 401(k).

Please email a cover letter, three professional references, resume and a writing sample to Ashley Heath at aheath@trcsolutions.com.


Any listing above does not constitute an endorsement by the Green Builder® Coalition. We do not have any professional or financial stake in the preceding information. Rather, we provide this solely for the benefit of those seeking employment.


Voices

Train of Thought

Leaving a Legacy

We’ve gone through a good stretch here at the Coalition recently. Our educational sessions at RESNET and Better Buildings: Better Business were attended by 65, 23 and 18 people respectively. That’s 106 people we’ve spoken to face-to-face, not to mention all the people we met at our RESNET booth. Next, we’ll be presenting at the ACI National Conference. We’re getting invitations to speak at regional and local events, too.

Laureen at the B4 ConferenceDon’t get me wrong; I’m proud of the low environmental footprint (no commute; low dry cleaning bill; no extra building to heat/cool/maintain/secure/insure) we have as a virtual organization. But I relish the opportunity to speak to an audience, whether it’s in-person or through a webinar. There’s a certain energy exuded by the audience that is hard to replicate elsewhere.

At these events, I can’t tell you how fortunate I feel to interact with my professional network. In fact, I get spoiled going to these conferences filled with great people. It’s so refreshing to exchange ideas with big thinkers, inspiring intellects and objective & analytically-minded people. It’s such a positive atmosphere, compared to my little corner of the world. Here, water conservation is a foreign concept, my neighborhood tried to classify a gentleman’s solar panels as “roof clutter” to prevent installation and another neighborhood is considering the collection of a special assessment to sue a homeowner over his yet-to-be-installed solar panels.

It was during a post-session conversation with 2 students that I found the inspiration for this column. It’s the topic of one’s legacy. Almost all of those conference-goers I described above seem to view their jobs with a larger purpose. To them, it’s not just about the paycheck. Whether they consciously realize it or not, they are striving to leave a positive legacy. I see these common motives: making something that helps others (regardless of the timeframe, and often without recognition), leaving behind a better planet for future generations to enjoy, striving to make the biggest positive impact on their industry, etc.

Try out this mental exercise: Fast forward to the end of your life. What will people say about your career at your funeral? What do you want to be remembered for (professionally)?

Until I helped found the Green Builder® Coalition with Ron Jones 3+ years ago, I never really thought about my professional legacy. I worked hard and enjoyed helping others, but I wasn’t truly vested in my employer’s success. Maybe that perspective is true of most non-business owners/entrepreneurs; maybe not. I don’t know.

But I do know this: My team is working very hard, and it’s certainly not for anything close to a lucrative paycheck. I believe they, like many in the green building industry, do all they do because they strive for something more. They are proud of the work they produce; the lives impacted; the difference made. They yearn to do what’s right. They think not of themselves, but of the bigger picture. For that, I am extremely humbled and grateful.


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