Debra Sypien, LEED AP BC+C, PRESIDENT
Sustainable Facility Coordinator, The Christman Company
Debra brings over 20 years of experience to her current role as Sustainable Facilities Coordinator, where she provides assistance to The Christman Company’s project planning group to ensure that projects pursuing LEED status achieve the desired level of certification. For the last ten years, Debra has concentrated exclusively on sustainability, playing a part in over 45 LEED projects, including many notable firsts. Debra has a long history of working with the West Michigan Chapter of the USGBC. She began by coordinating the LEED User Group (LUG Nuts) in 2006, then moved on to chair the chapter’s educational program, where she worked to achieve the chapter’s Program Provider credentials. Debra has also served as a program reviewer for presentations for the USGBC and the GBCI credential maintenance program.
DeVon C. Miller, LEED AP, CPMP, VICE PRESIDENT
Building Commissioning Specialist, Western Michigan University
DeVon Miller is the Building Commissioning Administrator at Western Michigan University. DeVon is new to Facilities Management but has over 15 years of experience in project management including energy conservation, building automation systems, building commissioning and is a Commissioning Process Management Professional and LEED Accredited Professional with ASHRAE and Green Building Certification Institute (GBCI) respectively. He holds a BS in Mechanical Engineering from Michigan Technological University.
Mark Zoeteman, PE, CEM, HBDP, LEED AP BD+C/O+M, SECRETARY
Senior Mechanical Engineer, Fishbeck, Thompson, Carr & Huber, Inc.
Mark has over 30 years of mechanical HVAC design and energy analysis experience on retail, commercial, industrial and institutional projects. He has performed energy modeling and life cycle cost analyses to evaluate high performance building system options for new and existing buildings. He has completed many existing building energy audits and performed EPA ENERGY STAR verifications. He has been involved in over 50 LEED projects as energy analyst, HVAC design engineer or LEED Administrator. He is a professional engineer registered in 11 states, Certified Energy Manager, past technical submittal reviewer for USGBC’s LEED for Commercial Interiors program and a LEED AP in both Building Design + Construction and Operations + Maintenance specialties. Mark was LEED Administrator for FTC&H’s LEED for Building Operations & Maintenance: Existing Buildings project.
Kristen Trovillion, LEED GA, TREASURER
Sustainability Coordinator, Grand Rapids Public Schools
As the Sustainability Coordinator for Grand Rapids Public Schools, Kristen reduces the environmental impact of district operations, while engaging students in meaningful sustainability learning projects. Prior to coming onboard with the district, Kristen held the position of Green Schools Fellow with the Center for Green Schools at the US Green Building Council. In her previous work at the Indiana Energy Office and Indianapolis’ Office of Sustainability, Kristen managed over $100M in building retrofit, renewable energy, and fleet conversion projects and collaborated on Indianapolis’ first city-wide sustainability assessment. Kristen holds a BA in Political Science from Alma College and an MPA in Energy Policy from Indiana University – School of Public and Environmental Affairs.
David Rinard, PAST CHAIR
Director of Global Environment Performance, Steelcase
An accomplished speaker on sustainability, operations environmental performance, and environmental strategies David educates and inspires community, customers, and business influencers through numerous board and community activities, national conferences, and educational events. David has a Bachelor's in Microbiology and Public Health from Michigan State University and a Master's in Management from Aquinas College. David participated as a member of the foundation committee that formed the West Michigan Chapter.
Jessica Eimer Bowen
Director of Sustainability, Aquinas College
Jessica Eimer Bowen graduated Summa Cum Laude from Aquinas College in December 2005 with a Bachelor of Science in Sustainable Business, Environmental Studies and Geography. Jessica has worked in the Center for Sustainability at Aquinas College since 2006 as the Program Director and more recently, the Director of Sustainability. She is active in the college’s campus sustainability initiative by playing a lead role in organizing and managing student involvement, overseeing the college’s sustainability metrics and committees, and supporting the “internal redesign for sustainability” process. Finally, she represents the Center for Sustainability in various local community initiatives, such as the Community Sustainability Partnership, and in national efforts such as RecycleMania.
Renae Hesselink, LEED AP BD+C
Vice President Sustainability, Nichols
Renae is a founding member of the U.S. Green Building Council West Michigan chapter, and past Chair of the Board of Directors and currently the Chapter’s Green School Advocacy Committee Chair. She has been with Nichols (a distributor of custodial and packaging supplies) for 21 years in various positions and seven years ago moved into to a new role within the company as Vice President of Sustainability. In 2010 Nichols achieved LEED-EB O & M (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design for Existing Buildings Operations and Maintenance) and was recognized as a 2011 Michigan Green Leader by the Detroit Free Press. Renae has been involved in the successful implementation of more than forty Green Cleaning programs that have lead to LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) either for new construction or existing building credits for building projects around the state of Michigan. Other roles include: Goodwill of West Michigan Board of Directors, Board member on the Employer’s Association of West Michigan, leadership team of the Muskegon Sustainability Coalition; leadership team for the Grand Rapids Community Sustainable Partnership, Kent County Lodging Association Green Team and Chair of TEDxMuskegon.
Brett Little, LFA, LEED APH, CGHP
Executive Director, GreenHome Institute
A graduate of the Aquinas College Sustainable Business Bachelors Program, Brett is the Executive Director of the GreenHome Institute and is helping homeowners, builders, architects, and developers find more sustainable and healthier ways to build BETTER. Brett sits on the board of the USGBC - West Michigan chapter and is a co-facilitator of the Living Future Collaborative: Great Lakes. Brett loves supporting the local economy, kayaking, microbreweries, public transportation, board games and living the West Michigan dream with his wife and young son.
Attorney, The Business Law Group
Andrew earned a Bachelor of Arts in History from Michigan State University and a law degree from Cooley Law School. Andrew is an attorney with an extensive background in civil litigation, business matters, franchise law, sports and entertainment law and landlord-tenant matters. He has helped dozens of businesses and individuals with variety of issues from starting up a new business venture to collecting debts to contract drafting and negotiations to general counsel to drafting and reviewing franchise agreements to evictions.
Sarah Latta Rainero, LEED AP, EDFP
Regional Director, Community Assistance Team
Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC)
Since April of 2008, Sarah has worked in Community Development for the MEDC. The Community Development team is committed to vibrant, sustainable and unique places and provides economic development services and programs that attract and retain talent in Michigan communities. In her current role, Sarah manages a pipeline of real estate projects across the state, and the dedicated staff that evaluate projects for financial consideration and provide technical assistance. Prior to MEDC, Sarah was a project manager with the National Brownfield Association in Chicago. Sarah is a Michigan State University Spartan and enjoys “Pure Michigan” through hiking and golf.
Environmental Services- Sustainability, Consumers Energy
Jessica graduated from Aquinas College with a B.S. in Sustainable Business. Based out of Jackson, Michigan, Jessica is the environmental lead for Consumers Energy’s corporate sustainability program. For the last couple years she has helped coordinate Consumers Energy’s sustainability disclosures, strategy, and internal programs advancing the Company’s sustainability performance to the 1st quartile when compared to its peers.
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