“Every living person
depends on the environment”
For 30 years, Joanne Rodriguez has worked to advocate for healthy, affordable, durable building environments. Working across the many influencers of design and development: architects, engineers, building owners and contractors, her experience is helping to influence an ever-expanding market on topics related to sustainability impacts through water, waste, energy and air as it applies to the built environment.
Through principles of regenerative design, giving back more than we take, Rodriguez is also working with communities to address climate change; teaching how to advocate and implement healthy building strategies which will have a profound impact on the health and wellness of those occupants and the communities they serve.
A frequent National speaker, she recognizes that theory and practice must work together. She speaks on issues related to the technical aspects of roofing and building envelopes; matters related to green infrastructure and ecosystems management in the built environment; as well as conducting design charette and strategic messaging programs for corporate and community entities seeking to promote improved environmental outcomes.
As a former member of the Construction Specifications Institute Strategic Planning Task Team, Joanne contributed to the development of the national organizations new 5-year plan. She also served in various leadership roles over a 15-year span, including that of President, for the Chicago Chapter of the Construction Specifications Institute. Rodriguez is active in USGBC National through participation on the Waterbuild Advisory Board, and is co-Chair for the Local Partners Regional Outreach committee for the Chicago Host Chapter of Greenbuild 2018 through the Illinois Green Alliance. Participating in various organizations like AIA, NRCA, ULI, UN Chicago, ecoAmerica, Green Roofs for Healthy Cities, CDRA, Climate Leadership Corps and CRP Chicago Chapter–Rodriguez is able to stay at the forefront of emerging trends and innovations in the sustainability world.
Currently, Joanne is leading a faith-based, transitional housing initiative in conjunction with the Third New Hope Baptist Church Community Care Network and Transition to Success. She is laying out the strategic vision for a sustainable, resilient community development project intended to support participants of Transition to Success move from poverty to self-sufficiency. Mentoring community leaders is a critical part of developing an intergenerational model of training support for scaling and repeating the initiative from block to block. Applying technical knowledge with climate knowledge has provided a solid background to advocate on issues of environmental justice.
Her vast experience working across the many private and public stakeholders has proven to be beneficial in addressing complex issues related to full-spectrum sustainability. Joanne believes that sustainability is reciprocal and renewable, which leads her to ask with every project: “does our change lead to replenishing the resources we’ve used?”