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Are you passionate about sustainable design yet perplexed by how to get started? Would you like to learn how to support sustainability efforts as a firm principal, a firm specialist, a consultant, or a community advocate? What precautions should you consider for a successful launch and viable practice? What are some emerging trends and opportunities in the post-pandemic era?

AIA New York has assembled an exciting group of experts to help forge a clear path for taking on leadership roles as sustainable design warriors and helping achieve AIA’s 2030 Challenge! Panelists will point you in the correct direction with their extensive knowledge covering technical aspects, resilience and reconstruction, legal concerns, and community-based approaches, along with projected changes and opportunities as sustainability continues to be integrated into building codes, local laws, national policy, and international priorities. The days of providing traditional architectural design services are long gone. Your future depends on developing a hybrid approach that can provide a diversity of skills, services, and stewardship. We are in an emergency situation that requires all hands on deck to achieve zero carbon emission goals. The future depends on all of us participating! Be prepared to generate a lively discussion.

Miguel Angel Baltierra, Assoc. AIA, LEED BD+C, PMP, CAHP, AAAE CM, Director, Sustainable Strategies for the Universe

Illya Azaroff, FAIA, Founding Co-chair, DfRR; 2021-2022 President, AIANYS

Richard Yancey, FAIA, Founding Executive Director, Building Energy Exchange (BE-Ex)
Stas Zakrzewski, FAIA, CPHD, Principal, ZH Architects
Benjamin Shepherd LEED AP BD+C, Director, Atelier Ten
Satpal Kaur, Founder & Principal, SATPAL

Moderator & Speaker:
Gioia Montana Connell, Assoc. AIA, LEED AP BD+C, WEDG Associate, Built Ecology Consultant, WSP

About the Speakers:
Miguel Angel Baltierra 
has been writing about architecture, planning, and the related professions since 1985. From 2011 to 2018 he was the host of the AIA New York Oculus Podcast, during which time he also served on the AIANY Oculus Committee, helping to guide the capter’s quarterly publication. His writing has appeared in ArchNewsNow, Architectural Record, International Design Magazine, and The Taiwan Review. Baltierra began writing as the Arts Editor for L.A. Architect Magazine, published by AIA Los Angeles. He was an editor and contributor to several books, monographs, and catalogs, including Westfourth Architecture: Bucharest Calls New York, Espirtu Digital / Digital Spirit: Fernando Salicrup, Homage Alma Boricua, XXX Aniversario, and Towards a Sustainable Urban Environment in South East Asia 1993, among others. Baltierra contributed an essay on universal design in the airport environment for an upcoming book on airport planning at Pratt Institute with Professor Enrique Limon. Baltierra attended the Harvard University Graduate School of Design, California State Polytechnic University at Pomona, and the George Washington University School of Business.

Ilya Azaroff FAIA is a professor at New York City College of Technology and the founding principal of +LAB architect, a firm with a mission give greater voice and visibility to communities who have been on the front lines of climate change by building resilient capacity and advance goals for a regenerative future. He is an internationally recognized expert in disaster mitigation, climate adaptation, regenerative design and resilient planning strategies with over 30 years experience. He regularly works with city, state, and federal agencies, professional societies, not-for-profits, community groups, and foreign

governments. Currently Illya serves as a technical expert on the New York Climate Impact Assessment, he is a COP28 Delegate. He served as an SME- subject mater expert, with the Rockefeller Foundation 100RC as well as a Technical Advisor to HHS-ASPR-Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response informing the NDFR-National Disaster Recovery Framework. Azaroff is one of the founding co-chairs of the AIANY Design for Risk and Reconstruction Committee. He also spearheads the AIANY-NYS Unified Crisis Task Force, which was formed to address COVID-19-related architecture and design issues. Illya serves on the AIA National Board of Director.

Gioia Montana Connell is a design professional whose passion for place-based design has directed her career in architecture, planning, and sustainability consulting. As Built Ecology Consultant at WSP, she currently works across the portfolio, master planning, and building scales leading strategy, analytics, and sustainable building and Net Zero certifications for federal projects and industrial developers. Her current work builds on prior consulting and in-house experience in architecture at Roche Dinkeloo and in planning at Vita Nuova, as well as her own consulting practice GMCC. She has worked with communities, cities, and startups from across the globe on climate-resilient and nature-based solutions from New York to California and Ecuador to Sweden, with partners from Yale to the United Nations.

Richard Yancey is the founding Executive Director of the Building Energy Exchange (BE-Ex), a nonprofit center of excellence that accelerates the transition to energy-efficient buildings by serving as a trusted expert to the building industry. Through education, exhibitions, and research, BE-Ex plays a central role in the climate action plans of both New York City and State. As a founding member of the United Nations ECE International Centers of Excellence for High Performance Buildings, BE-Ex also advances high-performance buildings globally. Prior to BE-Ex, Yancey practiced architecture in Seattle and New York, working on an array of award-winning projects. He has lectured and is published widely and served on the New York City Mayor’s Climate Action Plan Technical Working Group.

Stas Zakrzewski is a principal at ZH Architects, a practice that integrates sustainable strategies into a body of modern and design driven work. ZH is a widely recognized industry and thought leader in Passive House and works closely with clients and consultants to explore new low-carbon strategies that help ensure the next generation of buildings will meet our global climate challenges. ZH has completed several Passive House-certified projects, ranging from single-family houses to a 24-story residential high-rise tower. This range of work has provided him with an understanding of the hurdles and opportunities available in the current code and regulatory climate. Zakrzewski has as served as a member of AIA COTE and New York Passive House, and has advised on the NYC Department of Building’s Energy Code Committees. He recently acted as chair for the Multifamily Working Group for NYC’s Climate Mobilization Act, also known as Local Law 97.

Ben Shepherd is a Director of Atelier Ten’s New York office and leads the firm’s Benchmarking and Master Planning practices. He has extensive experience in sustainability consulting, master planning, urban ecology, renewable energy systems, and green development assessments. Shepherd has directed numerous building projects and master plans in sectors including commercial, university, government, and transportation. He has consulted on nearly 150 high-performance building and planning projects during his time at Atelier Ten, including over 30 LEED-certified projects and 25 projects currently seeking LEED certification. He has experience with a variety of LEED certifications, including LEED for Neighborhood Development, LEED for Healthcare, LEED BD+C for New Construction and Core and Shell, and LEED for Interior Design and Construction. He is a member and has served as the Co-Chair of the Urban Land Institute and the New York Infrastructure Council, and he is a member of the University Development and Innovation Council at ULI National. Shepherd has taught core courses on environmental design and sustainability at Yale, Cornell, and Pratt. He holds a M.A. in Environmental Management from the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies and a B.A. in Environmental Science from Northland College.

Satpal Kaur (pronounced Sathpaal) is the Principal Designer at SATPAL, a design activist firm that believes architecture is a tool for equity, change and activism. She is a building systems thought leader with over a decade of experience designing buildings with cutting-edge technologies. She is recognized as a high-performance building activist for her passion in implementing cutting-edge technologies that merge building science and environmental justice in architecture and is the recipient of the “40 Under 40 Award” by Building Design+Construction. Kaur designed the first two multifamily Passive Houses projects in NYC along with Chris Benedict. She believes in holistically integrating clients and community to become part of the sustainable revolution. Kaur’s unique skills have also delivered a fresh perspective to homeless shelter initiatives and the creation of energy-efficient envelope typologies ranging from buildings to a landmarked US ship conservatory and window AC unit prototypes. Kaur is currently a Climate Justice Fellow with NYSERDA.

COVID-19 vaccinations and face masks are strongly encouraged for all visitors. Read our full Health and Safety Protocol here.

Organized by
AIANY Emerging New York Architects Committee, AIANY Design for Risk and Reconstruction Committee
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