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NEEA’s BetterBricks Awards Highlight Regional Commitment to Energy-Efficient Buildings

Veronica Marzilli
Northwest Energy Efficiency Alliance (NEEA) - Portland

Sarah Lazzaro
Northwest Energy Efficiency Alliance (NEEA) - Portland


NEEA’s BetterBricks Awards Highlight Regional Commitment to Energy-Efficient Buildings

Annual award recognizes owners and builders who promote and implement high-performance commercial building design and operating strategies in Portland and Seattle

Portland, Ore.
– Today, the Northwest Energy Efficiency Alliance’s BetterBricks commercial building initiative, in collaboration with regional utilities and other partners, announced its annual BetterBricks award winners for Portland and Seattle.

As part of its goal to help transform the region and meet its growing energy demand, NEEA’s BetterBricks initiative encourages building owners and developers to employ energy-saving strategies in properties across the Northwest. The initiative provides training and resources that help commercial buildings perform better and contribute to an increase in the region’s energy efficiency.

“This year’s BetterBricks Award winners illustrate extraordinary leadership in sustainability with ideas and results that are replicated nationwide,” said Susan Stratton, executive director of NEEA. “Through their collaborative efforts our region is making impressive gains in significantly reducing energy consumption and leading the country in an energy-efficient future.”

The BetterBricks Awards recognize the outstanding career achievements of these commercial building professionals whose efforts to promote and implement high performance design and operating solutions result in tremendous energy savings. Winners include owners, developers, architects, engineers, facility managers and sustainability advocates who lead the region in forward-thinking business practices and technical innovations for an energy-efficient and sustainable built environment.

 Winners in the following categories include:


•          Owner/Decision Maker: Justin Hurley, Director of Real Estate and Sustainable
Planning, Asante Health Systems

•          Design Engineer Co-winners: John McMichael, Principal, Interface Engineering, and Steve Reidy, Principal PAE Engineers

•      Facility Manager/Building Operations: Rob Beardon, Facility Director, Portland Art Museum, and Mac McMillan, Building Engineer, Portland Art Museum

•          Service Contractor: Tom Konicke, Business Unit Manager – Oregon Energy & Facility Services Group, McKinstry

•          Emerging Leader: Martin Tull, Executive Director, Green Sports Alliance

•           Advocate: Ralph DiNola, Principal and Marketing Director , Green Building Services

•          Special Judges’ Award: Mitch Dec, Energy Department Manager, Glumac


•         Architect/Designer:  Allyn Stellmacher, ZGF
•         Advocate:  Rod Kauffman, BOMA Seattle King County
•         Emerging Leader:  Brian Geller, Seattle 2030 District
•         Owner/Developer:  Robert Foster, Northshore School District
•         Facility Manager/Operator:  Cal Ihler, Seattle University
•         Facility Manager/Operator: Rick Mock, Washington Holdings
•         Special Judge’s Award:  Scott Dorough, PeaceHealth St. Joseph Medical Center

Winners are selected by a panel of judges comprised of industry professionals, utility representatives and green building experts.

Award winners used and promoted a variety of best practices such as employing early design decision-making and energy modeling, supporting energy tracking and building commissioning in existing buildings, improving indoor air quality and water conservation.


NEEA’s BetterBricks program partnered with Energy Trust of Oregon, Stoel Rives, LLP and Heritage Bank to sponsor the Oregon/SW Washington BetterBricks Awards.

In Seattle, the awards were sponsored by Puget Sound Energy, Seattle City Light, Tacoma Power, Snohomish Public Utility District, and the Puget Sound Business Journal.

About BetterBricks
BetterBricks is the commercial building initiative of the Northwest Energy Efficiency Alliance (NEEA), which is supported by Northwest electric utilities. Through BetterBricks, NEEA advances ideas to accelerate energy savings in new and existing commercial buildings. BetterBricks education & training, online resources and recognition of industry leaders guide and inspire building professionals to embrace best practices, improve energy performance and achieve their sustainability goals. Visit to connect to these powerful energy ideas and more.