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Dr. Neil Murphy Receives USGBC Leadership Award

Dr. Cornelius B. Murphy, Jr., of the SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry was the recipient of a 2015 Leadership Award from the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) for his work at the forefront of sustainability in the built environment.

Murphy, the Senior Fellow for Environmental and Sustainable Systems at ESF and former college president, was among seven individuals and companies recognized for their commitment to sustainability in the built environment.

The honorees were recognized at the annual USGBC Leadership Luncheon at the Greenbuild International Conference and Expo in Washington, D.C., in November.

"The recipients of USGBC's annual Leadership Awards possess an unwavering commitment to advancing the work of our movement and truly deserve to be recognized and celebrated," said Rick Fedrizzi, CEO and founding chair of the USGBC. "These leaders inspire others to take action through their passion for a more sustainable world."

Students from ESF also attended this year's conference. The students volunteered at the conference in exchange for lower conference fees. The ESF contingent assisted with a variety of tasks throughout the event including preparing conference materials and security screenings.

The students were able to attend sessions throughout the conference and take advantage of networking opportunities.

"I learned a lot about different topics that specifically interest me," said senior Lukas Vogt, a sustainable energy management major. "I also had the ability to network. I introduced myself to the (incoming CEO) of the USGBC (Mahesh Ramanujam) and am now in email contact with him, with plans to have him give a presentation at ESF in the future. I also connected with an individual from Syracuse who wants to develop a community initiative in Syracuse to increase the overall health of Syracuse residents. I will be working with him to develop a more fine-tuned action plan over the next few months."

Post-conference, Vogt said, he received an email with a job offer from a consultant company because of a conversation he had at the conference.

ESF students attending the conference along with Vogt were Lauren Fisher, junior, sustainable energy management (SEM); Gillian Giem, junior, SEM; Jorge Guarin, sophomore, SEM; Shan Hemwani, senior, SEM; Ty Kallfelz, senior, SEM; Dalton Kimball, senior SEM; Isaac Knipfing, senior, SEM; Alex Poisson, graduate student, environmental studies; Ethan Requardt, junior, SEM; and Pat Wickersham, senior, environmental science.

In addition to Murphy, this year's 2015 USGBC Leadership Award recipients include Chrissa Pagitsas, director of the Green Initiative at Fannie Mae; Honorable Katherine Hammack, assistant secretary of the Army for Installations, Energy and Environment; Amory Lovins, co-founder of the Rocky Mountain Institute; Romilly Madew, CEO of Green Building Council of Australia; Juan Ontiveros, associate vice president – utilities at the University of Texas at Austin; and Colgate-Palmolive Company.