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Green Building Success Stories

All green building is local and the US Green Building Council (USGBC) is giving its chapters the chance to share their local success stories with the world. In its third year, the USGBC Chapter Award Program recognizes chapters across the U.S. in their green building and market transformation efforts. The award program, sponsored by Milliken Contract, is an opportunity for chapters to shine among the USGBC and green building community and be recognized at Member Day at USGBC's annual Greenbuild Conference to be held in Denver, CO this November.

""Around the world, Milliken is committed to sustainable excellence," said Bill Gregory, director of sustainable strategies for Milliken Floor Covering. "With USGBC's exploding expansion, sharing best practices is beneficial to both established chapters and incoming leaders."

One of last year's award winners, the Cascadia Chapter, boasts the distinction of being one of two original chapters of USGBC. Additionally the chapter is comprised of three branches - Vancouver, Seattle and Portland - all of which operate in unison to promote the advancement of green building knowledge and practices across the Cascadia region. I n 2002, Cascadia formed the nation's first LEED Users Group and in 2004, Cascadia hosted Greenbuild in Portland in November with over 8000 attendees. Most recently, in 2005, Cascadia helped pass statewide legislation in Washington requiring LEED Silver for all state funded buildings.

The success of the Cascadia Chapter mirrors the accomplishments of the other chapters nationwide and all chapters are afforded the opportunity to be acknowledged for their achievements. Other past chapter award recipients include the St. Louis, Redwood Empire, Baltimore, Delaware Valley, Colorado, and the Northern California chapters.

Further examples of success include the Delaware Valley Chapter which has been successful in working with the Philadelphia School District to promote environmentally responsible school buildings. In fact, the DVGBC was so effective at communicating the benefits of green school design, the School District registered one of their new schools to become LEED certified.

Similarly the St. Louis chapter has shown true leadership in its commitment to transforming the built environment of the St. Louis region. In 2004 the chapter's primary goal - to have 20 LEED registered and/or certified buildings in the region by 2006 was realized much more quickly than anticipated - as of mid-October 2004 they were ahead of schedule with 15 such projects.

Nominations for the Chapter Awards are accepted for each of the following categories:
  • Advocacy and Influence- the chapter needs to demonstrate a successful advocacy or policy initiative with demonstrable results for the benefits of USGBC or the public at large.
  • LEED- the chapter needs to demonstrate how they've been proactive in promoting the registration and certification of buildings.
  • Education- the chapter needs to show an educational program or strategy that directly meets the intent of the strategic plan and the chapter needs to show the results of their effective outreach and educational initiative.
  • Research- the chapter needs to demonstrate a significant research initiative and document any ongoing results.
  • USGBC as a Community- the chapter needs to demonstrate innovative or exemplary initiatives at fostering partnerships or alliances within the professional community or communities at-large.
  • Organizational Excellence- the chapter needs to demonstrate organizational excellence as defined by the USGBC Strategic Plan.

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