Enabling the transition to smarter, healthier, net-zero buildings, campuses and factories.
The Buildings Program galvanizes the built environment community to spur forward next-gen buildings that are smarter, more efficient and healthier. Join us to dive into the technologies, financing models and partnerships needed to empower tenants, facility managers and owners to achieve net-zero emissions and tackle embodied carbon.
The Power of Data
IoT, AI and Predictive Buildings
Participants include professionals in:
Real estate developers
Facility and asset managers
Building material manufacturers
Investors and lenders
Startups and innovators
Featured Buildings Program Speakers
Sielen is a highly skilled Industry Executive and Board Director with 24 years of experience in driving global infrastructure and digital transformation Go-to-Market (GTM) sales strategy. As Cisco's Global Sustainability Lead for Industries, she oversees enablement of innovative sustainable solutions and strategic alliances to help customers in 12 industries including utilities, transportation, manufacturing, and financial services reach their Net Zero goals leveraging Cisco technology.
Prior to this role, she was Cisco's Global Digital Transportation and Water Lead, collaborating with teams and ecosystem partners to drive digital transformation of infrastructure, IoT technologies, and IT/Operations Technology (OT) convergence. She brought in-depth experience building innovative industry practices, GTM sales strategy and CXO level collaborations.
Sielen serves as Cisco's Diversity & Inclusion Lead for the Marketing organization and is highly adept in ESG. Prior to joining Cisco in 2018, she spent 20 years at Jacobs, as a Global Strategic Sales Director leading industry sector partnerships and facilitation of complex cross-business multidisciplinary teams to implement innovative and sustainable solutions for energy, water, and transportation customers. She also co-founded Jacobs’ Smart Cities Initiative in 2015, leading the global sales strategy.
She is a board member for Parametrix, a leading engineering, environmental, and planning company dedicated to creating vibrant and sustainable communities of the future. She is also a board member for Leadership Tomorrow (LT), a Seattle civic leadership organization focused on fostering healthy and resilient communities. Sielen served as the Partnership Chair for Smart Water Networks Forum (SWAN), a global organization dedicated to accelerating digital water, and received SWAN’s 'Outstanding Leadership' award. Sielen also served as a Membership Chair for WTS, an organization advancing women leadership in transportation, where she received the ‘Member of the Year’ award.
Sielen has completed the OnBoarding Women and University of Washington's Women Board Directors Development programs. She holds master's and bachelor's degrees in Civil and Environmental Engineering from University of Washington.
Lynn Simon, FAIA, LEED Fellow, brings more than 25 years of experience in climate, sustainability, and equity across tech, real estate, and AEC sectors. She recently joined Arup as a Principal and West Sustainability Services Leader based in San Francisco. Lynn was previously the Head of Sustainability for Real Estate and Workplace Services at Google and a Senior Vice President of Sustainability at Thornton Tomasetti, who acquired her own successful consulting firm. She has a diverse set of skills in developing client relationships, driving cross-functional programs into organizations, and building multi-disciplinary global teams with a focus on carbon, waste, water, health, and equity. Lynn has a bachelor’s degree in environmental design from the University of California, Berkeley, and a Master of Architecture from the University of Washington. She is also a certified integral coach. Lynn serves on the Board of Directors for the Beverly Willis Architecture Foundation and received the SHERO Leadership Award in 2020 from the USGBC Pacific Region.
20 + years of City government policy and program experience, in City Council staff, public information specialist and program manager capacities.
Over ten years of experience providing racial equity training to build capacity for increasing racial justice in City government and in the community. In this capacity work extensively with cross-racial teams seeking to bring about institutional and structural change to create racial equity in the city of Seattle. In addition to training general audiences scope of work has a purposeful focus on bringing in strategies and perspectives that support People of Color in their leadership development and effectiveness.
Equity in educational opportunity has been a focus as a community activist and ultimately led to running for and serving a four year term on the Seattle Public School Board. This experience was among the most valuable personal challenges of moving from theory to action for racial equity.
In 2016 Darlene accepted the position of Director of the new Department of Race and Equity in Oakland California, where she is currently applying her years of experience public policy and equity expertise to lead and support Oakland’s efforts to create a more just and equitable City.
Janet Pogue McLaurin is a leader in Gensler’s global workplace practice areas and research initiatives. She is the Global Director Workplace Research which is one of six areas of focus within the Gensler Research Institute. Janet has been instrumental in leading Gensler’s award-winning workplace research advancing the science of workplace design as well as the WPIx client survey which measures space effectiveness, workplace experience, and what employees value on projects. An influential thought leader on the future of work, Janet shares her workplace expertise and research across the industry including CoreNet Global, IFMA World Workplace, ULI, Harvard LILA, SXSW, and WSJ Future of Everything; and with major media outlets including The Wall Street Journal, Fast Company, BBC, CNBC, CBS, NPR, Business Talk Radio, and Freakonomics.Janet, a Principal at Gensler, has spent four decades in both the Denver and Washington, DC offices. She co-founded Gensler’s Shanghai and Beijing offices and was Managing Director of the Denver office for over a decade. A registered Architect, she has served on the Gensler’s Board of Directors and currently serves on the Practice Area Management Committee for the firm. Janet was elevated to Fellow in the International Interior Design Association (IIDA) in 2017 and was recently elevated to The College of Fellows of The American Institute of Architects (AIA) for her notable contributions to the advancement of the profession of architecture.
Katie Hughes oversees the health and safety of Amazon’s global corporate portfolio. She started at Amazon in August of 2011. Katie’s goal is to ensure Amazon is the Earth’s Best (Safest) Employer, which requires monitoring regulatory changes that impact EHS, adjusting internal policies as required, and then ensuring team compliance. Katie drives new initiatives within the corporate space and ensures implementation. While most of EHS is tied to regulation, Katie firmly believes in going above and beyond to implement best practices to keep employees safe and healthy, as evidenced by her work to deploy the indoor air quality program. Katie helped lead the COVID-19 response on behalf of Amazon corporate, and received the Mary L McClinton Patient Safety Award (2022) for her work delivering COVID-19 vaccines to over 145k community members.
Brenden is a recognized leader with 20 years of experience in built environment sustainability across public, private, and nonprofit sectors. At JLL, Brenden works with both Investors and Occupiers to decarbonize their real estate portfolios. Trained as an engineer, Brenden has deep technical expertise paired with broad experience in business strategy. Prior to joining JLL, Brenden led consulting work at Integral Group, the global leader in Net Zero Energy design engineering. At Integral, Brenden developed sustainable real estate strategy for 5 global technology companies and created the Equitable Climate Action Plan for one of the largest cities in California Previously, Brenden worked in the nonprofit sector. He led US Green Building Council’s operations across California, Washington, Oregon, and Hawaii, leading program development, fundraising, and strategic partnerships. Before that, Brenden created the Urban Land Institute’s climate resilience and adaptation program. This program developed resources for real estate investors to prepare for and adapt to climate risk. Earlier in his career, Brenden led the Green Building Program at the City of Santa Monica. There he developed one of the first green building codes, that became the basis for the statewide CALGreen code that is used today.
Anthony Bernheim, FAIA, LEED Fellow, is currently the Healthy and Resilient Buildings Program Manager at San Francisco International Airport, responsible for the management of the Net Zero Energy and the Commissioning, Activation, & Simulation Services programs within the Design and Construction group. On the forefront of sustainability, reimagining the built environment and its impact on human health, Anthony Bernheim is a visionary and respected leader in energy efficient, decarbonized, and high-performance building. Beginning as early as the 1980's he has devoted his career to pioneering the impact of the built environment on the health of people and the planet. He has a record of designing and implementing an integrated approach to sustainability, adaptation, resilience, and regeneration.
"The building industry has a massive business opportunity to holistically reimagine the spaces we work and live in so that nature and humans can thrive in harmony. The Buildings Program at VERGE brings together today's biggest innovators and market leading practitioners that are driving change in our built environment. Join us to experience the future of the real estate industry."