Jessica L. Wilson

Nominated by their peers, the award winners represent excellence in sustainability, leadership and innovation

Washington, D.C.—(Sept. 16, 2016)—Today, USGBC North Carolina announced the winners of the 2016 Sustainable Business Awards, an annual recognition of companies, individuals and nonprofits that demonstrate exemplary commitment and achievements in creating a more sustainable future for North Carolina. The winners were recognized at the 2016 USGBC North Carolina Green Gala. 

“USGBC North Carolina is proud to honor our award recipients for their dedication and leadership to sustainability in the state,” said Sarah Beth Harkless, director of community, USGBC North Carolina. “With their collective commitment to a sustainable built environment, we are continuing to successfully promote green buildings as a transformative tool for the global environment and human health in our communities, cities and state.”

The 2016 Sustainable Business Award winners 

  • A Green Apple a Day is awarded to schools that exemplify leadership by integrating sustainability principles: Chapel Hill-Carrboro City Schools, Chapel Hill, N.C. The Chapel Hill-Carrboro City School’s commitment to sustainability has resulted not only in energy savings and reduced carbon emissions, but a generation of students educated about waste reduction, regenerative processes and landfill alternatives.  
  • Fearless Leader was established to honor early-career professionals who provide outstanding leadership: Brian Baewon Koh, AIA, LEED AP BD+C, principal, director of design, Innovative Design.Koh has led a numerous award-winning sustainability projects and been an active USGBC North Carolina volunteer for more than 12 years.
  • The Thomas Edison award is given to companies demonstrating innovative performance/transferable solutions: Bank of America, Charlotte, North Carolina. Bank of America received the award for its dedication to environmentally sustainable operations and industry-wide leadership.

The Talking Walls award recognize projects for successful systematic integration of sustainability standards:

  • Residential: Horseshoe Farm is the last in a series of new structures interspersed with existing outbuildings on farmland in Raleigh.
  • Small Commercial New Construction: The Kent Corner development transformed an environmentally contaminated site within a historic low-income community on the edge of downtown Durham.
  • Large Commercial New Construction: Duke Medicine Cancer Center, a LEED Gold research/training facility on a transformed grayfield site in Durham.
  • Small Commercial Existing Building: Piedmont Natural Gas Rockingham Resource Center, a modified warehouse certified as LEED Silver in Rockingham.
  • Large Commercial Existing Building: Wexford Science + Technologies, Building 60, a highly renovated core and shell building designed to minimize its use of precious resources and contribute to its civic environment in Winston-Salem, N.C.

“Thanks to our leaders and committed volunteers in North Carolina, we are advancing our mission and, together, transforming the built environment,” said Mahesh Ramanujam, chief operating officer, USGBC. “The sustainable business award winners represent some of our great partners in the state of North Carolina—partners who are working to design and construct better buildings, reduce overall environmental impact and create a healthier and more sustainable built environment where we live, learn, work and play.” 

There are currently more than 797 LEED-certified buildings in North Carolina, equivalent to nearly 87 million square feet. In 2014, North Carolina ranked seventh in the nation for LEED buildings in square feet of LEED space per state resident. The green building industry also serves as an economic driver in the state. Between 2015 and 2018, green building construction in North Carolina expected to support nearly 460,000 jobs and more than $26 billion in labor earnings, according to USGBC’s 2015 Green Building Economic Impact Study.