This week, the most delicious treat arrived in my in-box. Trim Tab (Volume 18)'s Summer Edition features one of my favorite examples of transformative thinking and doing: the Bertschi School's Science Wing, the fourth project in the world and the first in Washington State to achieve full certification under the Living Building Challenge, and the first ever to receive certification under Version 2.0 of the system.
O'Brien & Company has enjoyed its association with the forward-thinking Bertschi School for several years, starting with the non-profit's decision to design and build its gym and community building to earn LEED Gold certification, and then its decision to become one of the pioneer participants in the Washington Green Schools certification program, and then its decision to work with the Restorative Collective to design the School's Science Wing to meet all 20 of the Living Building Imperatives. As part of the Restorative Collective, O'Brien & Company offered its services pro bono with other design professionals to build an informed foundation for designing buildings "to [meet] the 2030 Challenge and [create] net-zero buildings."
Also, drum roll....this issue of Trim Tab features my first published explanation of the EMERGE Leadership Model, the foundation for the EMERGE Leadership Project (ELP). ELP is my primary focus these days and consists of training, mentoring, writing and speaking on the topic of leadership from the vantage point of more than 30 years of experience in the sustainable building movement, as well as a particular focus on "emergent" leadership. We urgently need more effective leaders, and more of them. For more details, you can read my article: "EMERGE: Effective Leadership for Sustainable Solutions that Stick."
Associated with the article is a case study in which EMERGE principles were applied. This is a planning project for a very special place, the Rainier Beach Urban Farm and Wetlands. The project, which was led by Berger Partnership and included O'Brien & Company's participation was stimulus for articulating how EMERGE Leadership principles could be applied in a collaborative community planning project. You can read the Case Study.
Trim Tab offers other nourishment: a great conversation with one of the most humble (and for that I really appreciate him) movement leaders out there, Paul Hawken, a feature on child-centered design, and a wonderful report on and call to further local leadership by Mona LeMoine in the feature "Rooted in the Region."
A great summer or anytime read.
Kathleen O'Brien, Editor of the Building Capacity Blog is a Cascadia Fellow, a lifetime designation provided by the Cascadia Green Building Council, a program of the International Living Future Institute. ILFI is the publisher of Trim Tab. Kathleen is also founder of the non-profit EMERGE Leadership Project. The primary vehicle for conveying the EMERGE Leadership Model is through the two-day workshop EMERGE: Leadership Skills for Green Building Advocates. See the upcoming Fall/Winter workshop schedule.