Sea Change: The Shifting Relationship between Sustainability and Resilience

Event Prices: 
Free Admission


Cameron Sinclair | Co-founder and CEO, Architecture for Humanity
Cameron is the co-founder and ‘chief eternal optimist’ (CEO) for Architecture for Humanity, a charitable organization that provides pro-bono design, planning and construction services to communities in need or in crisis.
Over the past two decades Cameron has worked in 47 countries channeling more than $50 million into humanitarian initiatives. Projects include schools, health clinics, affordable housing, and youth centers. He has developed long-term sustainable reconstruction programs after tsunamis in South Asia and Japan, earthquakes in Haiti and Chile, Hurricane Katrina, and most recently Superstorm Sandy. On April 6, 2014, the organization’s 15th anniversary, Cameron will step down as Executive Director of the organization in order to help develop a sustainable leadership transition.
Cameron is a TED prize recipient, a Young Global Leader by the World Economic Forum and winner of the National Design Award. He co-edited Design Like You Give A Damn: Architectural Responses To Humanitarian Crises and Design Like You Give a Damn: Building Change from the Ground Up. He also is writing a book on community-led resiliency. 
Cameron is an advisor for the Jolie Pitt Foundation, USAID, and the Clinton Global Initiative.

Read the Keynote recap.


This multi-city investigation compares efforts to create a more robust urban infrastructure.  We’ll hear from various government officials who are shifting to long-term strategies that respond and adapt to the “new normal”. They will present policies for mitigating and adapting to a changing climate. These civic leaders will also discuss how new strategies to improve resilience of cities and buildings have impacted city planning. Read the Cities Panel recap.


Dr. Nancy Kete | Managing Director, Rockefeller Foundation
With over 25 years of experience in government, civil society, and the private sector, Nancy joined the Rockefeller Foundation in 2012. As Managing Director, she leads the foundation’s global work on resilience including developing strategies and practices for infusing resilience thinking throughout the foundation’s work. Before joining the Foundation, she spent thirteen years at the World Resources Institute, first as Director of the Climate, Energy, and Pollution Program and then as founder and Director of EMBARQ, a distinguished program that catalyzed environmentally sustainable transport solutions to improve quality of life in cities in Mexico, Brazil, India, Turkey and the Andean region. She was also involved in President Obama’s National Commission on the BP Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill and Offshore Drilling, as well as the US EPA’s acid rain control title of the 1990 Clean Air Act.


Lykke Leonardsen | Head of the Department for Strategic Planning, City of Copenhagen
As part of Copenhagen’s Technical and Environmental Administration, Lykke is responsible for a range of activities in the city, including biodiversity strategies, wastewater management, strategic planning for green and blue areas, and nature and water conservation.  Most notably Lykke led the development of the city’s first climate change adaptation plan beginning in 2008.  The plan contains detailed proposals for new and existing urban areas, and aims to identify the most appropriate measures to avoid or reduce damage to infrastructure, water supply, sanitation and buildings. Now a dynamic center of development, the City of Copenhagen intends to achieve carbon neutrality by 2025.

Kristin Gisleson Palmer | Councilmember, City of New Orleans
Kristin was elected New Orleans District “C” Councilmember in February 2010. Prior to that, she served as Executive Director of Rebuilding Together New Orleans, where she assisted elderly, disabled, and low-income residents in returning to their homes post-Katrina. Her top priorities include promoting regional connectivity, accessibility, and diversity within the transportation sector and improving the quality of life in District C through blight remediation, sustainable development, and supporting the cultural economy. She is an Aspen Institute Rodel Fellow and an advisory board member for Smart Growth America’s Local Leaders Council.

Seth Pinsky | Executive Vice President, RXR Realty
As the former President the New York City Economic Development Corporation, Seth has negotiated the City’s involvement in development projects ranging from Yankee Stadium and Citifield, to the World Trade Center, to the acquisition of Hunters Point South in Queens. He also played an instrumental role in Mayor Bloomberg’s post-Sandy strategy, directing the Special Initiative for Rebuilding and Resiliency, a $20 billion plan to help affected neighborhoods rebuild stronger and smarter.  In July 2013, Seth joined RXR Realty, a real estate operating and investment company. As an Executive Vice President, Seth leads a major initiative to invest in emerging opportunities in New York City and the surrounding tri-state area that have historically been characterized by under-investment, but have significant growth potential.


Today’s more frequent extreme weather events are not only damaging to our buildings, but in some instances life threatening.  No longer a luxury, resilient and sustainable buildings are becoming a necessity.  Learn what architects, engineers, and developers are doing to adapt their buildings to more extreme environmental conditions.  Hear how resilience, risk, and performance are influencing their decision-making process throughout the development, design, and operational phases. Read the Buildings Panel recap.


Alan Brake | Executive Editor, The Architect's Newspaper
The Architect’s Newspaper provides a useful, engaging and thought-provoking resource for architects and designers. Alan initiated one of three regional editions of The Architect’s Newspaper in the Midwest prior to coming into his current role as Executive Editor. He has written about architecture, design, and urbanism for Architecture, Architectural Record, Azure, Interior Design, Landscape Architecture, Metropolis, The New York Times and other publications. He studied architectural history and urbanism at Vassar College and Yale University, where he earned a Masters in Environmental Design. He is the recipient of a research grant from the Graham Foundation for Advanced Studies in the Fine Arts.


Aine Brazil | Vice Chairman, Thornton Tomasetti
Aine is responsible for the design and construction of high-rise offices, residential buildings, hotels, and hospitals, including more than four million square feet in Times Square and the Hudson Yards mixed-use development. She has authored numerous technical papers and lectured at Cornell, Princeton, and Columbia, and was the first president of the Structural Engineers Association of New York.  Aine holds a bachelor’s degree engineering from the University College in Galway, Ireland and a master’s degree in engineering from the Imperial College of Science and Technology in London. She was a member of the Steering Committee for the Mayor of New York’s Building Resiliency Task Force after Superstorm Sandy.

John “Janno” Lieber | President, World Trade Center Properties LLC
As President of World Trade Center Properties LLC, Janno is responsible for managing all aspects of the Silverstein organization’s efforts to rebuild at the World Trade Center site: planning, design, and construction issues; business, financing and legal matters; and public affairs, government and community relations. Janno previously served as Senior Vice President of Lawrence Ruben Company and as an independent consultant specializing in public-private development issues. Among other projects, he helped create the financial and legal structure for the $700 million-plus conversion of the James A. Farley Post Office Building into Moynihan Station, a new terminal for Penn Station. From 1994 to 1998, he worked at the U.S. Department of Transportation, finishing as Assistant Secretary for Transportation Policy. 

Claire Weisz, FAIA | Principal, WXY Architecture + Urban Design 
Claire is a founding partner of WXY Architecture + Urban Design. WXY is based in New York City and known for innovation in the art of planning, urban design and architecture. As an architect and as a co-founder of the Design Trust for Public Space, she has revived the discourse and design of public space through a variety of projects that focus on infrastructure, neighborhoods and urban ecology. She has lectured and taught across the US and Canada and is currently on faculty at NYU’s Wagner School of Public Service and a Visiting Critic of Urban Design at Cornell’s College of Architecture, Art and Planning in NYC.


GBCI: Approved for 3.5 CE Hours
AIA CES: Approved for 3.5 HSW/LU Hours

*Please note there is a $50 processing fee for continuing education requests.


12:30 - 1:30 pm   Registration and Lunch
1:30 - 1:40           Welcome and Opening Remarks
1:40 - 2:15           Keynote
2:15 - 2:30           Coffee Break
2:30 - 3:50           Cities Panel
3:50 - 4:00           Coffee Break
4:00 - 5:20           Buildings Panel
5:20 - 5:30 pm     Closing Remarks


Bloomberg LP
731 Lexington Avenue (between 58th and 59th Streets)
7th Floor Multipurpose Room
New York, NY 10022

Special thanks to Bloomberg LP for hosting this event!


32BJ SEIU & 32BJ Training Funds
American Council of Engineering Companies of New York (ACEC NY)
American Society of Landscape Architects - New York Chapter (ASLA NY) 
Architecture for Humanity New York
Climate Week NYC
CoreNet Global - New York City Chapter
Green Light New York
International Facility Management Association - New York City Chapter (IFMA NYC)
The New York Academy of Sciences
New Yorkers for Parks
Real Estate Board of New York (REBNY)
USGBC - Connecticut Chapter
USGBC - Long Island Chapter
USGBC - NY Upstate Chapter 

Please note that this conference is open to Urban Green Council members only.


Bloomberg L.P.

731 Lexington Avenue (between 58th and 59th Streets)
New York, NY 10022