The U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) has announced speakers for the Greenbuild International Conference & Expo. New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, New York Times columnist Thomas Friedman, medical anthropologist and physician Paul Farmer, and ABC News political commentator Cokie Roberts will address the more than 25,000 attendees at Greenbuild 2011 on Oct. 4-7 in Toronto, Canada.
"Each year, we strive to build a program enriched with thoughtful pairings of expert speakers with topical, relevant and inspiring content," said Kimberly Lewis, vice president of conferences and events for the USGBC, in a press release. "This year, as Greenbuild celebrates its 10 year anniversary and answers the question, 'What's NEXT?' we look forward to hosting a roster of world-renowned visionaries."
This year, Greenbuild will combine its opening session with a celebration on Oct. 5 at Toronto's Air Canada Centre. Friedman will deliver the opening keynote and then lend his expertise to USGBC's Resiliency Agenda panel. Moderated by Roberts, the panel will discuss resiliency and demonstrate how all industries can play a role in community rebuilding efforts in Haiti, New Orleans and around the globe. Friedman and Roberts will be joined by Dr. Paul Farmer, chair of Global Health and Social Medicine at Harvard Medical School and founder of Partners in Health
"Re-envisioned in honor of the Greenbuild tenth anniversary, this kick-off event will set the tone for the show by urging attendees to envision what's NEXT through connection, innovation, communication and action," Lewis said.
In his 2008 bestselling book, "Hot, Flat, and Crowded," Friedman, the Pulitzer Prize-winning and internationally renowned author, reporter and columnist, explored the parallels between the climate crisis and the global economic crisis. He is a champion for "Geo-Greenism," a national strategy to make America healthier, richer, more innovative, more productive and more secure.
Medical anthropologist and physician Dr. Farmer has written extensively on health, human rights and the consequences of social inequality. His new book, "Haiti: After the Earthquake," makes a thoughtful assessment on what works — and what doesn't — in helping communities recover from disaster.
Roberts, an Emmy Award-winning journalist, bestselling author and a native of New Orleans, serves dually as senior news analyst for National Public Radio and political analyst for ABC News. An inductee into the Broadcasting and Cable Hall of Fame, Roberts has won countless awards and was cited as one of the 50 greatest women in the history of broadcasting.
On the final day of Greenbuild, Oct. 7, Bloomberg will deliver the closing session and discuss what cities around the world can do to generate real change. Bloomberg will be joined by Natalie Jeremijenko, director of NYU's xdesign Environmental Health Clinic; John Picard, principal, John Picard & Associates; and Lisa Strausfeld, interactive information designer and entrepreneur. With a fast-paced "TED-talk" format, the closing plenary will answer "What's NEXT?" in sustainability in our nation's cities.
Bloomberg catapulted the "Big Apple" into a beacon for the green building movement, making it safer, stronger and greener. As chair of the C40 Cities Climate Leadership Group, Bloomberg made it possible for the largest cities around the world to adopt and implement similar, innovative sustainability policies.
Greenbuild is the world's largest conference and expo dedicated to green building. Thousands of building professionals from all over the world come together at Greenbuild for four days of outstanding educational sessions, renowned speakers, green building tours of Toronto-area green building projects, special seminars and networking events.
For more information, see our Building a Green Home research center.