Director of Building Optimization, Sazan Environmental Services
Passion, Expertise and Contribution
Participate in one or more PBL Curriculum Design Labs to support both teachers and students in applied problem solving.
Support Green Job profiles and diversity workforce development strategies.
Design ways to integrate SA Impact Storytelling into personal and professional communications channels and platforms.
Support Ambassadors in building positive scenarios for the year 2050 through the Summer Series of 2050 WORKOUTS.
Attend the annual 2050 Update (August) and help promote it as widely as possible.
Steven was drawn into the natural world through family camping and backpacking, but it was a very cool biology teacher in high school who introduced him to ecology and the intricate systems of interconnection behind the beauty of the natural world. It was a time of advocacy and politics in the 1970s and he helped organize for the first Earth Day at his high school. In college he brought together the world of art and creation with his understanding of ecology and appreciation for the natural world, ending up with a degree in Environmental Design. A teacher and mentor at the time, a practicing architect and professor, introduced him to the concept of Ecological Design. This was before the terms sustainability, sustainable design, and green building had been introduced to the world of architecture and design. Steven was hooked by the systems thinking approach to designing and building.
His pathway took him through learning a variety of crafts, including carpentry, cabinetmaking, boatbuilding, blacksmithing, and furniture making, all the while learning more about ecology and systems thinking. The carpentry led to building a passive solar house of sustainably harvested timber with a site-built composting toilet and other ecological design elements. Wanting to find a way to integrate and share this way of seeing the world, Steven earned a K-12 credential, however lack of teaching jobs at the time brought him back to building. Eventually, moving from hands-on building to managing the construction, he decided to return to school to earn a Masters in Environmental Policy and Planning with a focus on Sustainability for the Built Environment. By then, the concept of sustainability had taken hold, the green building movement was emerging, and interest in sustainable design was growing.
Steven’s subsequent professional career has focused on optimizing the built environment to reduce the ecological, and more recently, carbon footprint of our buildings and infrastructure. As a consultant with a small firm, he manages and consults on projects involving sustainable design, renewable energy, water quality and conservation, environmental restoration, resilient design, and other fascinating project elements. Project types have ranged from sustainable K-12 school buildings, Tribal solar and microgrid installations, and neighborhood environmental clean-up, to municipal water supplies and river wetlands restoration. The thread running through this diversity of experience and skill development has been that early love of nature and high school exposure to ecology, and his commitment to making an improvement in the quality and sustainability of our environment.