2016 Event Package Questionnaire

USGBC Central Ohio Chapter is considering a discounted rate when purchasing tickets to six 2016 events at one time and we need your vote. Please tell us if this option would be desirable to you.

The current 2016 event schedule is:

  • Jan. 28th - LUNCHandLEADERS, - Central Ohio Chapter Update
  • Feb. 25th - LUNCHandLEADERS - Higher Education Panel discussion
  • March 10th - BUILDINGSinACTION Tour - Columbus Museum of Art
  • April 18th - DesignColumbus
  • May 26th - LUNCHandLEADERS - City Managers' Panel discussion
  • June - BUILDINGSinACTION Tour - Columbus Zoo
  • July 28th - LUNCHandLEADERS - Healthcare Panel discussion
  • August 25th - LUNCHandLEADERS - Energy Panel discussion with AEP, Columbia Gas
  • Sept. 22nd - LUNCHandLEADERS - Columbus Transportation Panel discussion
  • October - BUILDINGSinACTION Tour - Columbus Metropolitan Libraries
  • December - Holiday Event


Emerging Professional Jacqueline Langhals writes about her experience at Convergence 2015, USGBC Conference in San Diego.

On June 28, USGBC kicked off Convergence, its national conference, in San Diego, CA. USGBC Central Ohio had three representatives, (Lisa Laney, Leah Morgan, and myself) able to attend and network with other USGBC members from across the globe. This was my first time experiencing USGBC on a national level--and the experience was life-changing. Never before have I been surrounded by so many passionate, intelligent, and driven individuals all trying to better the world by making our built environment more sustainable. The four days were filled with business meetings, forums, presentations, awards, hands-on sustainability projects, and inspiring conversations. It was emphasized that USGBC is not just an organization, but a movement. I must say, if the world is filled with more people like I met at Convergence, this movement is only going to continue to grow. I attended Convergence as a member of the Emerging Professionals National Committee (EPNC) to learn about USGBC’s new product: ADVANCE. ADVANCE is a platform of products to help all communities and ADVANCE participants gain access to USGBC’s professional network and resources. Simply put, it connects skilled volunteers with community-based organizations in under-served areas in order to truly promote green building to all. It is USGBC’s vision that “buildings and communities will regenerate and sustain the health and vitality of all life within a generation.” ADVANCE is our way to continue working toward that goal of bringing green buildings to everyone. It provides opportunities for those new to the industry to gain experience and learn more about sustainable practices. For those that have been in the industry longer, it gives them a chance to give back to a cause that they care deeply about. For the community organizations (i.e. non-profits, community centers, faith-based organizations, etc.), it enables them to build and operate a sustainable building that they would not have had the resources to do before. There is a place for everyone with ADVANCE. advance-imageMy experience at Convergence has led me to be even more excited to help this movement. If you are interested in being a part of ADVANCE or know of a local project and/or person that could benefit from ADVANCE, please contact me at jacquelinel@ma-architects.com.  

OFCC Recognized at April Commission Meeting for 200 LEED Certified Schools

Read Rick Fedrizzi's Thank You Letter. Read more about the recognition on the OFCC website.  On behalf of Rick Fedrizzi, the USGBC Central Ohio Chapter is happy to share a Thank You letter to all Ohioans that contributed to the 200+ LEED certified schools. Ohio leads the nation in public K-12 LEED schools and we should be proud of the advancements we are making for our children. It takes a community to make a successful high performing, healthy and environmentally friendly school where our children can go to safely learn every day. We would like to add our thanks to all parties that worked on the schools and who are moving to make Ohio a more healthy, prosperous and sustainable environment. Kind Regards, Lisa A. Laney, Chair USGBC Central Ohio  

L&L Review: Funding for Green Projects

On October 23rd, we heard very informative news from Project Funding at the Lunch and Leaders meeting. Patty Huddle, Vice President of Existing Business Services for Columbus 2020; and David Hull, Assistant Director for the City of Columbus Department of Development presented. Columbus 2020 is one of six organizations contracted by the State of Ohio for the purpose of facilitating funding for a developer or business working on a project in the central Ohio region. Their goal is to net 150,000 jobs and $8 billion dollars and increase per capita spending by 2020. They intend to do this by improving infrastructure, meeting the workforce challenge, and increasing the following: manufacturing competitiveness, high growth opportunities, global trade and investment. They are here at no expense to help business owners locate whatever funding might be available for their projects and to help obtain Jobs Ohio funding. Each county has different resources for LEED projects and different tools available. In Franklin County the Columbus- Franklin Finance Authority is managed by Jean C. Ryan. Other sources for funding include SWACO (Solid Waste Authority of Columbus); Clean Ohio programs, a Jobs Revitalization program for blighted projects that may provide Phase II DSA funding for vacant buildings; OEPA funding programs with assistance from Laura Stephenson of the Treasurer’s Office, City of Columbus and Re-Energize Ohio; and tax credits and green energy funds; to name just a few. To learn more about funding opportunities presented by Patty Huddle and Matt McCollister of Columbus 2020 as well as obtain assistance completing incentive letters to Jobs Ohio, contact Columbus 2020 at 614.225.6063 or visit their website at http://columbusregion.com. David Hull, Assistant Director of Development, City of Columbus provided an overview of The Green Columbus Fund, a reimbursement grant program for LEED projects started in 2011. It provides $1 million dollars annually to be distributed to private and non-profit developers building Brownfield and LEED projects. It will reimburse the grant winner for Phase I and Phase II Environmental Site Assessment costs, asbestos surveys and abatements, and physical Phase II corrective actions. It builds on Clean Ohio and successive State of Ohio programs. In order to qualify for LEED dollars, the project must be LEED for New Construction, Core and Shell, Commercial Interiors, Existing Buildings, or Operation and Maintenance (EB; OEM). The program reimburses the application fee charged by GBCI (Green Building Certification Institute) and performance incentive boosts for LEED Gold (150%) and LEED Platinum (200%). In addition to this reimbursement application, applicants can increase their grant award through meeting the criteria set by the City of Columbus. .At the outset of the project it must be discussed with the City, submitted for review and approval by the Department of Development, and then submitted to the City Council for ordinance approval.

Sponsor Spotlight: Turner Construction Company

  1. How long has your firm been in business? Turner started in New York City in 1902, but we’re about to celebrate our 50th year in Columbus.
  2. Where are your offices located? Turner’s Columbus office is in the Arena District on Hanover Street, just south of Huntington Park. We have offices in Cleveland, Cincinnati, and Toledo (The Lathrop Company). Turner also has offices throughout the U.S. and internationally.
  3. How many LEED AP work at your firm? Over 1500 LEED credentialed staff nationally, 40 in Columbus.
  4. What is the main reason you and your firm are involved in the USGBC Central Ohio Chapter? Turner was one of the founding members of the USGBC National organization, back in the late 90’s. Since that time, Turner has invested heavily in training and credentialing of our staff, so that we can support our clients’ goals for sustainability and/or LEED certification on all of our projects. We’ve also been actively involved in the local USGBC chapters throughout the U.S., as part of our ongoing commitment to USGBC and the Mission. When the opportunity to start a USGBC chapter in Central Ohio became a reality, we jumped in and became a leading supporter.
  5. What types of projects are you focusing on right now? OR What disciplines do you regularly need to partner with on your projects? We’re working on the Columbus Metropolitan Library’s Vision 2020 program to build or renovate 10 branches, all scheduled to achieve LEED certification at varying levels. The Library’s commitments to sustainability, and improving the experience for the library users and their communities, are really inspiring. And we’re working with leading, local design firms to deliver outstanding projects – NBBJ, Jonathan Barnes, Design Group, Moody Nolan, Schooley Caldwell, Korda, Prater, Heapy, EMHT, etc.... – it’s been a great experience working with CML and these design firms on sustainable projects that benefit our communities.

Small Business Spotlight: Jonathan Meier, Rain Brothers co-owner:

An interview with Jonathan Meier, Rain Brothers co-owner: 1. How long has your firm been in business? Eight years. 2. How did you become interested in sustainable design/construction? I originally moved toward sustainable construction through working and living in an economically depressed neighborhood in Columbus. I wanted to do something in the neighborhood to create employment opportunities that provided fair wages, provided meaningful work, and demonstrated environmental stewardship. Our company started when I – along with my good friend Gordy Smith and five young men from the neighborhood – started constructing large- and small-scale rainwater harvesting systems in our backyard for urban farmers throughout Columbus. It grew into a passion from there. I also come from several generations of well drillers, so working with water is in the blood. Passion + Roots = Let’s Do This Thing! 3. What was your first job in the industry? We put in a large underground system at the Ohio Governor’s Residence early on in our business. Through the encouragement of Hope Taft (who was head of the native conservation efforts in the backyard of the Residence), we installed a 3,000-gallon catchment system with irrigation. Needless to say, it was a bit intimidating to go at an underground system in this high-profile setting. 4. What are a few projects your most proud of? We have done several large-scale rainwater systems for commercial applications – those are always rewarding from an ethical standpoint because they tend to have the biggest effect. But, honestly, the projects that I am most proud of are the ones where we’re given a tight budget and asked to design a thoughtful system. Challenges of this sort give me the most hope for change because it forces us to build out of necessity (instead of habit and comfort) and it pushes us to be more creative and more accessible with our work. I do not feel like we’re doing any justice to the greater good unless we can develop cost-effective, easily-implementable water solutions. The rainwater system we installed at The Ohio State University is an example of this type of system: The budget was derived from grant funding, and we were asked to develop a design-build package that would maximize system capacity and effect while minimizing cost. We also did a large-scale system for Franklin Park Conservatory that was quite enjoyable to design. 5. What is your vision for energy and environmental design in the next decade? My vision for energy and environmental design in the next decade involves having the green movement station itself amongst the poor. “Necessity is the mother of all innovation/invention.” None know that better than those who live day-to-day in a position of necessity. I have seen some amazingly innovative things constructed by people who are just trying to get by right here in Columbus (including several bike- and human-powered machines). Those who struggle have much to contribute and much to gain from environmental policies, so the marriage of the movement with struggling communities is natural. 6. What do you see as the greatest challenges for developing a sustainable built environment? Cost is certainly a large factor in the stalling of a transition into a green economy. But the speed at which things happen in construction is, I would argue, an obstruction to true progress. I am often both amazed and troubled by how quickly things happen. In our experience with Rain Brothers, often times, sustainable design is an afterthought or an addition instead of an approach. It is completely understandable that things happen so quickly (especially since few can afford to be slow and deliberate). Nonetheless, we have found that quickness generally impedes sustainability. 7. How does (or can) the USGBC-COH help you overcome these challenges? Perhaps by highlighting (through publications?) cost-effective, easily implementable green construction practices. And I’m not talking about screwing in an LED light bulb – but rather stories geared toward engineers, contractors, and architects from engineers, contractors, and architects about how to, say, simplify or modularize underground housing, or how to construct more healthy, naturally-aerated ponds that serve as natural swimming pools as well as irrigation sources (because, let’s face it, rainwater harvesting tanks are expensive), etc. 8. What types of projects are you focusing on right now? We are working on installing some pilot fire protection tanks (underground) in rural parts of Ohio. We are also getting ready to install a large-scale rainwater reuse system for Mitchell’s Ice Cream in Cleveland, and are working on a large-scale stormwater management system utilizing best management practices for a ranch north of Columbus. 9. Finish this statement: Early in my career, I wish someone had told me..... That growing a small business sucks. Few people will appreciate a job well done. Even fewer will recognize personal sacrifice for the business’ and/or customer’s sake. And hardly anyone will know when you’re working ridiculous hours and making very little. Realizing this is helpful, because it might make it easier to say “no” to jobs that don’t serve you, your ethic, and/or your business. 10. Finish this statement: I wish I had more time to... Farm, network, start other small businesses, cook

USGBC and the American Chemistry Council to Work Together to Advance LEED

WASHINGTON, DC - (August 27, 2014) - The U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) and the American Chemistry Council (ACC) today announced a new initiative designed to ensure the use of sustainable and environmentally protective products in buildings by applying technical and science-based approaches to the LEED green building program. This new initiative acknowledges USGBC’s success in leading the transformation of the built environment and sets up a pathway to take advantage of the materials science expertise of ACC and its members. “USGBC and ACC share the goal of advancing sustainability in the built environment, and we will work together to take advantage of our collective strength and experience,” said Rick Fedrizzi, president, CEO and founding chair, USGBC. “The looming impacts of climate change and the possibilities of improving human health and wellbeing favor collaboration and engagement as key strategies. The goal is forward progress.” ACC President and CEO Cal Dooley noted, “Modern energy efficiency gains, building safety advances and carbon footprint reductions would not be possible without the products of chemistry. From windows to insulation, adhesives to flooring, chemistry provides solutions that enable the energy efficient and sustainable buildings that consumers expect in today’s world. By combining USGBC, a leader of the green building movement, with the scientific know-how of ACC, we can develop a path to stronger, science-based standards that achieve measurable progress in sustainability.” LEED is regularly updated through a rigorous development process that includes public comments, technical review and balloting. USGBC and ACC will work within that framework to incorporate state-of-the-art safety, sustainability and life-cycle based approaches to LEED. LEED has facilitated advances in building technologies, integrated design and operating practices, as well as the tremendous growth of the green building sector, which supports or creates 7.9 million jobs across all 50 states and contributes $554 billion to the U.S. economy annually. The American business of chemistry employs nearly 800,000 Americans and supports nearly 25 percent of the U.S. GDP. Chemistry-based plastic building and construction materials saved 467.2 trillion BTUs of energy over alternative construction materials – enough energy saved over the course of a year to meet the average annual energy needs of 4.6 million U.S. households. Energy savings made possible by innovations in chemistry in homes in the U.S. prevented nearly 283 million tons of CO2 emissions in 2010—equivalent to the greenhouse gas emissions of 50 million passenger vehicles.

Member Spotlight: James Davidson, Smoot Construction

USGBC: Which came first – your interest in sustainable building or your professional career? JD: My professional career came first with a degree in Project Management. I have been Involved with numerous LEED projects( Several school projects and the Hollywood Casino) which led the way for my interest to become a LEED Green Associate . USGBC: What kind of opportunities do you see in your work for developing more sustainable built environments? JD: I see several project opportunities. It appears more and more clients are looking for LEED components in their projects (government agencies, public, and some private clients). They are looking for more efficiency with their HVAC systems and energy use. They are more interested in following good practices, using Commissioning, to insure getting a better product, and efficiently running mechanical systems. USGBC: What motivated you to become a USGBC member? JD: When I began studying to be a LEED Green Associate, I was also encouraged to do so by my company. USGBC: What do you enjoy most about being a USGBC chapter member? JD: The activities, and the networking with other companies, businesses and contractors. And, the opportunity to meet new clients. USGBC: What is the best connection or relationship you’ve made through USGBC? JD: People working within the construction community communicating about what makes a successful building for everybody. Sharing the common goals to provide an efficient building for the owner. USGBC: What do you see as the greatest challenge for developing a sustainable environment? JD: Education. Getting owners to understand that the cost factor is not nearly as high as they perceive it to be. You have to perform a life cycle analysis to fully understand the cost over the life span of the building for various components. Example: Flushless urinals may be less expensive over the life span of the building than conventional urinals when you factor in the cost for the water not utilized per flush. USGBC: What environmental element would you like to see implemented in every project? JD: Commissioning of HVAC Systems. USGBC: How do you spend your time away from work? JD: Ride my bike a lot, visit different colleges for my son and spend time with my church. USGBC: What topic would you like to see discussed at an upcoming Lunch and Leaders meeting? JD: Information on permeable pavements, cost comparisons to other pavements and its long-term benefits .    

Grange Insurance Audubon Center


Located on the Whittier Peninsula of the Scioto River just south of downtown Columbus, Ohio, the Grange Insurance Audubon Center represents a catalyst for change by connecting urban youth with their natural environment. The LEED® Gold Audubon Center anchors the redevelopment of this one time brown field that has been the site of industrial facilities, warehouses and an automobile impound lot. The new 84 acre Scioto Audubon Metro Park site is a designated “important bird area” or IBA by the National Audubon Society because it is positioned on a major migratory bird flyway.

The 18,000 s.f. Audubon Center is a model for sustainable design and promotes the economic, health and aesthetic benefits of building green. The nature center celebrates the tension between contrasting elements — urban / natural, riverine / meadow and indoor / outdoor. The building’s massing, orientation, materials and mechanical systems work in concert to create an interactive facility for exploring environmental awareness, habitat restoration, conservation practices and sustainable strategies. The building is a study of architectural simplicity in building material and form, quietly nesting within its natural surroundings.

  • OWNER – Grange Insurance Audubon Center Columbus and Franklin County Metropolitan Park District City of Columbus, Department of Recreation and Parks
  • ARCHITECT - DesignGroup
  • MEP ENGINEER - Heapy Engineering, Inc.
  • STRUCTURAL ENGINEER - Shelley Metz Baumann Hawk, Inc.
  • CIVIL ENGINEER - Burgess & Niple, Ltd.
  • LANDSCAPE ARCHITECT - Kinzelman Kline Gossman
  • ENVIRONMENTAL CONSULTANTS - Williams Creek Consulting
  • GENERAL CONTRACTOR - Gutkencht Construction
  • EXHIBIT DESIGN - Kraemer Design + Production, Inc.


  • Vegetated roof
  • Geothermal ground-source heat pump system
  • Passive solar design
  • Mixed-mode ventilation
  • 50% less energy used than a conventional building
  • 88% of spaces are daylit
  • 7 Acres of brownfield remediated

Member Spotlight: David Hull


Assistant Director, Department of Development, City of Columbus
Green Columbus Fund Member, Mayor Coleman's Green Team

USGBC: Which came first – your interest in sustainable building or your professional career?
I have had an interest since I went to the first Earth Day conference in Washington DC in 1970 as a AmeriCorps VISTA volunteer and I have been involved in transportation issues since I worked as Director of Essex County, NJ Department of Planning and Economic Development.
USGBC: What kinds of opportunities do you see in your work for developing a more sustainable built environment?
I manage the Green Columbus Grant Program that can help offset some costs associated with brownfield redevelopment and LEED certification. I also help manage the city's Pay as we Grow and Grow with a Plan and the implementation of the Big Darby Accord so I help manage environmentally and economically sustainable growth in Columbus.
USGBC: What motivated you to become a USGBC chapter member?
I became aware of the economic and environmental importance of green buildings, and the USGBC chapter gives me an opportunity to share my work and interact with like minded people in the business.
USGBC: What is the best connection or relationship you’ve made through USGBC?
Jeremy Cohen, he has been a very helpful resource while developing the Green Columbus Fund program and beyond.
USGBC: What do you do for fun outside the office? I like to read history and mysteries and I like to play touch football basketball.