Board of Advisors

Beth Brummitt

CEO, Brummitt Energy Associates

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Beth founded Brummitt Energy Associates in 1998 to focus on high performance buildings. With over 25 years’ experience in energy efficiency and building modeling, she has been training and speaking on the Title 24 energy codes since 1992 and on green building since 2001. She is a graduate of Stanford University and former Chair of the California Association of Building Energy Consultants. Beth was also the founding President of the San Diego Chapter Green Building Council and currently co-Chairs the SD Living Building Collaborative. She helped SDG&E to develop the first Zero Net Energy Case Study for commercial buildings, and focuses on strategic energy planning to guide her clients through the energy performance planning process. Beth is a regular presenter in multiple venues on relevant topics such as: Green Improvements and Valuation, Pursuing Net Zero Energy, and Biomimicry, Living Buildings, and Successful Thinking.

Dr. Rosibel Ochoa

Senior Executive Director of the von Liebig Entrepreneurism Center, UCSD

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Rosibel has adapted the von Liebig Center model into a technology acceleration platform that can be leveraged by universities and research institutes. During her tenure she has secured more than $4 million federal, corporate, and foundation grants and contracts to support the deployment of commercialization programs focused on healthcare and clean technologies at Southern California universities. These efforts have resulted in the direct support of 75 technology teams. She is the Program Director for a recently awarded 3-year grant from the National Science Foundation to create an I-Corps site at UC San Diego (2013) and Co- Principal Investigator of My Startup XX (2011), a fellowship program for female engineering students interested in pursuing entrepreneurship. Rosibel has partnered with local entrepreneurs, service providers, The Founder Institute, and the American Chemical Society to expand the Center’s educational offerings beyond credit-bearing courses to include workshops and online seminars focused on lean startup, venture creation, and regulatory matters. More than 1000 students have participated in these programs. She has also worked with numerous international government agencies, including the Inter-American Development Bank, non-profit organizations, and universities to deliver internships, workshops, and training on technology transfer, proof of concept, and entrepreneurship in Japan, South Korea, Mexico, Central America, and Colombia. Prior to joining the von Liebig Center, she founded TekDome, LLC, a technology commercialization consultancy in San Diego. She spent four years at Georgia Tech, where she served as the Associate Director of the Office of Technology Licensing and the Manager of the Industrial Contracts Group. Previous employers include Motorola’s Energy Systems Group and MeadWestvaco where she worked as a Research Scientist and Licensing Manager in the development and commercialization of novel materials and products in the areas of energy storage and generation. Rosibel received her B.Sc. from the National University of Honduras, and her M.Sc. and Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering from the University of Louisville.

Matthew Porreca

Associate Principle, BNIM

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Matthew Porreca leads BNIM's practice in California. He is currently serving as a Board of Director for the San Diego Green Building Council. His leadership in high profile integrated design teams has allowed him to produce excellence in design and high performance buildings. Matthew served as the Project Architect for the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art Expansion and Renovation, named Time Magazine's "Building of the Year" in 2007. He is currently leading BNIM’s project team at UCLA’s campus for the UCLA Henry Samueli School of Engineering and Applied Science - WIN-GEM Building which looks to set a new benchmarks in sustainability for the UCLA campus. In San Diego Matthew is leading BNIM’s team on 2 new buildings within a transformative corporate campus for Qualcomm at the Pacific Center Campus.

Robert Thiele

Principal Architect, Robert Thiele Associates

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Robert has a full service residential / commercial design practice, specializing in small coastal infill development and green building design.  Robert is a previous Board Member of the San Diego Green Building Council (SDGBC) and serves on the local AIA, Committee On The Environment as a COTE Member.  He also serves on the AIA National Disaster Assistance Team providing Rapid Safety Assessments of Building Safety in earthquakes and other natural disasters with a focus on community resilience and infrastructure. He is a CAL/EMA Safety Assessment Program Volunteer, and was deployed to Calexico in response to the 2010 Easter Earthquake to make rapid assessments of building safety. He currently is pursuing passions around discovering living systems infrastructure, energy, water, and waste and how they relate to living buildings, through the San Diego Living Building Collaborative. Robert is a project-based learning advocate, and has worked on the SDGBC Green Assistance Program for the past 3 years bringing new projects to the program, including the San Diego Food Bank and Balboa Park Sustainable Water Projects.   

Luisa Schultz

Professor, New School of Architecture and Design (NSA+D)

Luisa is a full time professor at the NewSchool of Architecture and Design (NSA+D) and an international consultant addressing innovative sustainable design and planning technologies for companies located in the United States and abroad. She was the Director of the Middle Eastern Chapter of the AIA, from 2000 through 2003. She was the corporate facility engineer for Aramco Services, Oil Company, located in Dhahran, Saudi Arabia and Houston, Texas. She is an active member of the World Council Affairs, Habitat for Humanity, Builders without Borders, Urban Land Institute and the National Center for Sustainable Communities, and has made numerous contributions to emergency shelter design as a team leader in Armenia and the Philippines. She organizes NSA+D students’ participation in local and international competitions. Luisa was an external consultant to Saudi Aramco to define the sustainable building guidelines for KAUST campus, which lead to the first LEED certified building in the Kingdom. Her previous faculty appointments were at King Faisal University, Dhahran, Saudi Arabia and the Art Institute of California. Courses taught include urban studio, design studio, non-western architecture, freehand drawing and environmental sciences. In addition, she has worked in the architectural offices of Anderson DeBartolo and Pan, in Tucson, Arizona, and as a campus planner at the University of Arizona prior to engaging in environmental and planning work for the DOD at Twenty Nine Palms and Barstow, CA. She received a M. Arch and B. Arch degree from the University of Arizona. Her postgraduate studies include pursuing a doctorate in water resources management and build environments of new economies. Currently, she is working to complete a Sustainable Practices Program at UCSD.

Dr. Kevin Zhu

Professor of Innovation, Technology & Operation, UCSD

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Kevin is an expert on technology innovation, management, commercialization and transfer, as well as how these are strategically formulated around a firm’s IP strategy. He received his doctoral degree from Stanford University, and worked in information technology and venture capital industries in Silicon Valley. He earned his tenure and full professorship in the University of California, San Diego. He is the recipient of the prestigious CAREER Award from the U.S. National Science Foundation (NSF). He has served as expert judge for the European Commission, the NSF of the U.S, China, Canada, and Israel. Prior to that, he served as a principal investigator on many large research projects related to new technologies and their adoption, as well as editors of top academic journals in the field of technology management. His work in software, media, and telecomm industries has been well cited and earned several Best Paper Awards in the field. He is a consultant/advisor for many world-class companies, and advises important institutions such as California Institute of Telecom & Information Technology, the San Diego Supercomputer Center, and the Industry Innovation Alliance of Smart Appliances. He is a frequent speaker for universities, industry and governments.