Chief Creative Officer // Hub Oakland
Ashara Ekundayo is an Oakland-based cultural worker of the urban landscape and has served as catalyst, curator, educator, and producer for more than 20 years. Through her company BluBlak Media Consulting, she has worked with local and national organizations to build capacity for increased community engagement through the uses of creative practice, exhibition, strategic communications design and project management. She is a serial entrepreneur and activist committed to social change, and has supported individuals and grassroots companies in the redesign of their brand strategy through permaculture principles and is an expert at negotiating collaborative space within the intersections of the public and private sector. Ashara has held Fellowship positions with the U.S. Dept of State Bureau of Educational & Cultural Affairs as well with Green For All and is the Fellowship Advisor for Business Alliance for Local Living Economies. She is currently a member of the "Future Soul Think Tank" at Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, is the STEAM Curriculum Developer for BlackGirlsCode.com, and is a burgeoning food blogger at "Grits & Greens." Ashara continues to cultivate community and re-imagine business acumen as a member of the Founding Team and Chief Creative Officer for Hub Oakland opening in Fall 2013.
Barbara Brown Wilson
Director // Center for Sustainable Development
Barbara Brown Wilson is the Director of the Center for Sustainable Development (CSD) and an Assistant Professor of Community and Regional Planning and Sustainable Development in the School of Architecture at UT Austin. Brown Wilson holds a PhD in Community and Regional Planning and a masters in architectural history, and this mix of applied contemporary and urban historical perspectives informs both her teaching and her research on the theory, ethics, and practice of sustainable community development. Her background in organizational development and facilitation informs her work supporting the many projects underway at the CSD—including the Sustainable Place Project, a HUD Sustainable Communities funded regional planning initiative. Dr. Brown Wilson has received national and local awards for her service to populations typically underserved by the urban design professions.
Systems and Strategy Designer // Holos
Roles such as sustainable and regenerative building advisor, process mapper, biomimicry practitioner, educator, and program developer begin to describe Kathy’s capabilities. As a systems and strategy designer at HOLOS, Kathy’s work focuses on the dynamic relationship between people and the built environment with the goal of enabling designs that lead to a greater natural ecology. Exploration using design and systems thinking through a biomimicry lens defines her approach. She has a career full of proven leadership, including serving on the UT School of Architecture Advisory Board, as past chair of the USGBC National Chapter Steering Committee, and appointments to multiple advisory committees. In 2011, she founded BiomimicryTX—one of twelve global network affiliates of the Biomimicry 3.8 Institute—and then became a certified Biomimicry Specialist. Most recently, Kathy is nearing certification as a TX Master Naturalist and is leading the development of an eco-region based toolkit for Texas.
Senior VP, CSO // RTKL
Lance Hosey is a Senior Vice President and the Chief Sustainability Officer at global architecture firm RTKL. He is a prolific writer on all aspects of design and sustainability, and recently published The Shape of Green: Aesthetics, Ecology, and Design which studies the relationship between sustainability and beauty. His successful keynote at SXSW Eco 2012 focused on this same topic. Thought leader John Elkington has called Lance “an inspirational guide to a future we can't wait to embrace.”
Founding Principal // The Street Plans Collaborative
Mike Lydon is a Principal with The Street Plans Collaborative, an urban planning, design, and research-advocacy firm based in Miami and New York City. Mike previously worked for Duany Plater-Zyberk and Company, an international leader in the practice of smart growth planning, design, and research techniques. Mike collaborated with Andres Duany and Jeff Speck in writing The Smart Growth Manual, published by McGraw-Hill in 2009, and honored by Planetizen as one of the top ten planning books of 2010. Mike is also the creator and primary author of The Open Streets Project and Tactical Urbanism: Short-Term Action, Long-Term Change (Vol. 1 & Vol. 2). Mike received a B.A. in American Cultural Studies from Bates College and a Masters in Urban Planning from the University of Michigan. He encourages you to trade four wheels for two.
Co-Founder, Artist // Illegal Art
Otis is a mixed-media artist focused upon the abstraction of social interaction and society which he communicates through public art, photography, video and film. In 2001 he founded the New York based public art collective, Illegal Art, whose interactive pieces have been installed throughout the United States and South America, Europe and The Middle East. The results of their project, Suggestion Box, were published by Chronicle Books (Suggestion, August 2005). Kriegel’s public art and mixed media work have been featured by numerous media outlets and published in catalogs in the United States and Europe. Kriegel received an Artist’s Grant to attend the Vermont Studio Center in July, 2010 and was the 2010 Visiting Artist at Webb School in Knoxville, Tennessee. Otis continues to install and perform participatory based-public art projects in the New York City area and beyond. He resides in New York City with his wife.
Founding Partner // hanrahan Meyers architects
As a founding partner of hanrahan Meyers architects (hMa), Victoria Meyers has been the principal designer on a number award winning projects, including DWi-P (Digital Water i-Pavilion), Won Buddhist Retreat (AIA NYChapter Honor Award), Infinity Chapel (AIA NYState Honor Award), and White Space (N. American Wood Design and Building Honor Award). Victoria’s projects include public institutional buildings, urban master plans, and residential projects.
In 2009 Victoria was one of ten women architects featured in Buildblog’s list: ‘Women Making an Impact’, including Kazuyo Sejima, Monica Ponce de Leon, and Lise Anne Couture. In 2013, hMa’s Won Buddhist Retreat won an Honor Award from the AIA NYChapter. In 2010, hMa won the Urban Land Institute Heritage Award for hMa’s Master Plan design for Battery Park City’s North Neighborhood, arguably the greenest, most forward thinking green and sustainable high-rise residential neighborhood in the world. As Master Plan Architects, hMa was part of a team that drafted the Battery Park City Green Guidelines, used by governments and developers for green development, world-wide. In 2006, Victoria published Designing with Light with Laurence King Publishers & Abbeville Press, cataloging hMa’s research into natural light, including the development of green technologies using sunlight. hMa has applied many new systems to building designs, including robotic sensors for lights, hvac, and other systems. In 2013 Victoria was named the David Niland Chair at the University of Cincinnati School of Architecture.
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