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To Make Greener Buildings, Try Innovating around the Edges

The building industry is slow to change. But three Yale alumni are finding ways to make changes on the margins and in the process offer solutions that aren’t easy to ignore.

A aerial photo of a 20th-century building retrofitted with solar panels.
  • Navigating a New Now: Prioritizing a Vulnerable Community

    Dr. Suzanne Lagarde ’14, CEO of Fair Haven Community Health Care, explains how she adapted vaccine delivery to meet the needs of the community even as the unrelenting pandemic took a toll on her staff.

    An illustration of nurses going door to door to discuss vaccination
  • Is Seattle Prepared for Climate Change?

    Ann Grodnik-Nagle ’06, climate policy advisor for Seattle Public Utilities, says that Seattle is focusing on both mitigation and adaptation, prioritizing vulnerable communities of color.

    Seattle's Space Needle obscured by smoke from wildfires in September 2020.
  • Piloting a California Plant Nursery through COVID, Drought, and Wildfires 

    Haydi Danielson ’84, co-owner of a commercial nursery in California, discusses leading a family business through the COVID-19 pandemic and the drought and wildfires affecting her home state.

    Desert plants in a garden
  • Keeping Community in the Investment Equation

    In this series, leaders tell stories about drawing on their core values in critical moments. For Lofton Holder ’90, grounding investing acumen in a connection to community builds trust and delivers returns.

    A man sitting at a table on the street in New York City
  • We Need to Acknowledge the Problem of Senior Poverty

    Joe Seldner ’84, founder of the Senior Poverty Prevention Project, calls for problem solvers to take on an issue getting little attention.

    A drawing of an older woman
  • The Fight for Healthcare Equity after COVID-19

    Dr. Cecelia Calhoun ’21, a Yale physician with a focus on sickle cell disease, and Yale SOM’s Dr. Howard Forman discuss the gargantuan but critical challenge of addressing the impact of systemic racism on the health of Black Americans.

    Vaccine outreach worker Herman Simmons talks to Theopulis Polk at a Chicago laundromat in March 2021.
  • Video: Identifying with a Team Helps Prevent Stress and Burnout among Healthcare Workers

    A Yale study conducted in the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic found that feeling like part of a team reduced reported stress and burnout—an insight with implications for how any kind of organization can weather a crisis.

    A group of healthcare workers preparing for surgery
  • What Does It Take to Create Financial Products That Can Save the Planet?

    Investors are increasingly eager to contribute to solutions for climate change and other environmental problems. Charlotte Kaiser ’07 of The Nature Conservancy’s NatureVest explains how the company builds financial products that attract mainstream capital while delivering conservation impacts.

    An overhead image of Ille Pierre Island in Seychelles.
  • How Trust Can Power Renewable Energy

    Lily Donge ’97 talked with us about how building trust is critical for any kind of real innovation—and how it’s helped her develop new models for scaling renewable energy.

    A wind farm in Rio Vista, California, with a path winding toward the turbine in the foreground
  • How Balancing Creativity and Rigor Helped Disney Build a Star Wars Vacation Experience

    Architect Ann Morrow Johnson ’14 is the executive producer and executive creative director for Walt Disney Imagineering’s immersive vacation experience Star Wars: Galactic Starcruiser. We talked with her about balancing innovative creativity and strategic rigor.

    Anne Morrow Johnson standing in front of an image of a Star Wars starship