Jessica Millman is running for the Urban/Regional Planner seat on the 2015 Board of Directors.
Please briefly describe how you, as an individual, have been aligned with the work of USGBC for the last three to five years.
For the last 10 years, I was either a member or chair of the LEED for Neighborhood Development Core Committee or the LP TAG. Over that period of time, I have served on USGBC Committees, written curriculum and taught workshops (live and webinar), consulted on projects that received LEED status (Platinum, Gold, and Silver), and assisted in the writing of the v.4 Reference Guide. Given that my work over the last three to five years has been almost exclusively dedicated to the development or implementation and maintenance of LEED-ND, I believe my work is in perfect alignment with that of the USGBC.
Please demonstrate, through a minimum of three examples, an applied depth of knowledge about green infrastructure, culturally affirming economic/community development and affordability, multi-modal transportation, urban density, and/or open space preservation.
All of my work applies the principles of LEED-ND and thus addresses all the items above.
- Little Tokyo Cultural Ecodistrict: I worked in the Little Tokyo neighborhood of Los Angeles to create green, inclusive, and culturally sensitive revitalization. Our team created plans for several underutilized sites to advance the goal of sustainable revitalization and cultural preservation.
- Codman Square (Boston, MA) Eco-Innovation District: With the opening of a commuter rail station, I used LEEDND to evaluate existing plans. Recommendations included retrofitting existing affordable housing, green infrastructure improvements, and creating complete streets.
- Sustainable Ithaca: To ensure that the Comprehensive Plan incorporates state-of-the-art sustainability practices, I compared City policies and regulations to LEED-ND standards. Much focus was on evaluating the land development codes and regulations to make sure that transit-friendly densities were allowed and that the codes didn’t encourage auto-centric development to the detriment of Ithaca’s sizable walking and biking commuter community.
What resources could you bring to help further participation by diverse sectors in USGBC?
One of the most exciting elements of my job is working with community development corporations (CDCs). For the most part, these community-based groups are working in low-income, disadvantaged communities. Often these CDCs are the only entities involved in development in these forgotten neighborhoods. Too frequently, residents in these neighborhoods are so desperate for new development and the amenities promised, they are hesitant to demand environmental performance.
I would like to help create a strong partnership between the CDCs and USGBC. It is these neighborhoods and these residents that deserve the best that green development can deliver.