Here are a few of my favorite takeaways from the event.
1. Hillary. Rodham. Clinton.
Regardless of your political affiliation, there is no denying that building green must be a pretty big deal if it attracts someone like former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton as the keynote speaker. And she knows her green stuff.
"There is a lot I could say about the extraordinary work of the U.S. Green Building Council because this really is – and I want you all to feel great about this because – this really is when a small group of committed people actually start a movement that is changing the world."
"By 2015, the non-residential market for green construction is estimated to grow between $120-$145 billion dollars."
"…at the top of any agenda about America's future, sustainability has to be viewed as one of the key goals for building back stronger here at home, for creating jobs that will not only give people a good income but help build their communities again."
"I find that we have some very good answers to the challenges we face if we think about how green construction and retrofitting have and would continue to create millions of good jobs that cannot be outsourced."
"And the movement is all about building the kind of future we want to leave to the next generation."
2. Educational and entertaining classes and speakers
My main purpose in attending Greenbuild was part of my individual development program (IDP). I'm on the UNA Sustainability/Green Team, and will have a supporting role in Group's corporate sustainability extended team.
If you ever have an opportunity to hear Eric Corey Freed speak, sign up immediately. He calls himself an organic architect who is passionate about sustainable design. Freed along with Mathew Grocoff gave an inspirational and hilarious presentation – presentation isn't even the right word…it was a theatrical production – on Designing for the Post-carbon Economy: It's Zero or Nothing. My words cannot capture their message, so here's a Freed video on a similar topic.
3. Architects can rap
Who knew architects could rap? Still can't get this out of my head after visiting @YKKAPAmerica booth: I am an Architect.
It's got a good beat and you can dance to it. (Wasn't American Bandstand filmed in Philly?)
4. Fell in love with my future firepit furniture – it's green!
Fell in love with the curved bench from Diamond Teak that was showcased at the show (check out their website at www.diamondteak.com for images).
Not only do I love the design, but love the story behind the furniture. I had the opportunity to meet the owner and learn that he grows and harvests his own teak trees in Costa Rica to make his furniture. You can read more about his story on his website at http://www.diamondteak.com/about-diamond-teak.html.
5. Race to the top of the 72 Rocky Steps
Some of my coworkers have learned never to get into a cab with me. You may think you're going back to the hotel, but I sometimes have other plans. Devin Abellon and Alan Squires (regular Uponor bloggers and webinar-ers) were in the cab with me when I asked the driver if he could take us to the Rocky Steps. Those are the iconic steps that Rocky ran up to the song "Gonna Fly Now." Of course, we ran all 72 steps and did our little jump and fist pumping once we got to the top.
6. My boss rocks as good as Bon Jovi
When Jon Bon Jovi took the stage, I was initially disappointed that I couldn't go on the floor to dance. I didn't have a yellow ticket. But my manager must know a guy and got her hands on some so I could go sing/shout very off key to Livin' on a Prayer. Thanks Ingrid!
Bon Jovi, btw – he's still got it.
Looking forward to Greenbuild 2014 in New Orleans! More good green things to come.