SAINT PAUL, Minn. – In an organization-wide move to enhance and reinforce sustainability practices, BWBR named Sara Goenner Curlee, AIA, LEED AP BD+C, the firm’s first key manager of performance design. The new role focuses on developing and coordinating BWBR’s existing sustainability design program, as well as leading efforts to improve the sustainability standards of projects across all industry types.
“Recent advances in benchmarking, materials design, and AEC processes have made designing sustainable facilities highly achievable,” said Pete Smith, FAIA, president and CEO of BWBR. “However, the speed with which these advances occur requires exceptional coordination to streamline and champion the pursuit for organizations. Sara’s leadership in this new position will bring a more structured focus to design, yielding the best results for every pursuit.”
A leading sustainability advocate within the industry, Curlee has contributed to performance design services that have helped clients achieve LEED certification for cutting edge projects such as Hennepin Healthcare’s Clinic & Specialty Center, a Fortune 500 Company’s Research & Development Building, and Carroll University’s Hastad and Rankin Halls. She is also a member of the U.S. Green Building Council’s Minnesota Chapter and received the chapter’s Circle of Excellence Volunteer Recognition Award.
“This is a new opportunity to expand our internal practices and elevate the solutions we create with our clients through holistic, data-based strategies,” Curlee said. “We only have 10 short years to mitigate the effects of climate change. By enhancing our services now, we bring hope, action, and change to issues that affect all of us.”
Curlee is a senior project architect at BWBR, graduating magna cum laude from the University of Minnesota with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Architecture and later earning her Master’s of Architecture degree from the University of Oregon. She specializes in sustainability-driven, high-performance projects, including higher education, health care, and science+technology facilities. She has been involved with multiple LEED and Minnesota Sustainability Guidelines (B3) projects, as well as assisted design team efforts to increase energy efficiency through the Energy Design Assistance Program (EDA).