Equity and Buildings: A Practical Framework for Buildings Practitioners

June 30, 2023

Equity and Buildings: A Practical Framework for Buildings Practitioners

This webinar outlines a practical framework for buildings practitioners – energy efficiency and electrification program administrators, policymakers, and others – to ensure their work is designed to serve all residents and is informed by and accountable to community priorities. Working off the 2021 Equity and Buildings Framework developed by the Urban Sustainability Directors Network, speakers will discuss best practices and concrete steps for meaningfully involving community members in planning and implementation of building upgrades programs and policies. The webinar will also cover how buildings practitioners can promote community capacity building, power shifting in decision making, and achieving program outcomes that advance community equity priorities. We will discuss opportunities for addressing intersectional community-wide issues in buildings work; developing an equity definition that fits your community’s needs; and different prompts, tools, and exercises that can help you center equity in your buildings work and remain accountable to equity goals. 

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Avni Jamdar, Regional Director, Northern California - Emerald Cities Collaborative

Avni directs the Northern California region for Emerald Cities and she advances zero carbon project opportunities, facilitates community workforce agreement negotiations and implementation, and leads community engagement efforts to center equity in environmental policies. Avni also oversees all Bay Area programs, including Anchors in Resilient Communities, which addresses the social, economic, and environmental determinants of health by leveraging the assets and capacities of Bay Area anchor institutions and community-based partners. She also directs the E-Contractor Academy, a minority, woman, and disabled veteran owned business enterprises contractor training program, and the RENEW Multi-Family program to perform decarbonization measures in affordable housing properties with community workforce agreements. She has successfully led a community engagement process in San Francisco to engage diverse stakeholders around the equity impacts of building decarbonization policies. Avni also served on the San Francisco Energy Efficiency Coordinating Committee in advising the San Francisco Board of Supervisors across policy and program areas. She was appointed by the Mayor to serve on the Citizens' Advisory Committee of the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission (SFPUC).


Karen Campblin, Chair, Environmental and Climate Justice - Virginia State Conference NAACP

Karen T. Campblin is a Community Development Planner specializing in transportation and community revitalization. She has managed various community involvement and community coordination projects throughout their lifecycle.  Utilizing her in-depth knowledge and experience in planning techniques and regulatory requirements, she is committed to work side-by-side with communities and their leaders to design equitable solutions and promote smart-growth legislation and policies. She is the founder and Manager of ktcPLAN, LLC., a small woman-owned boutique planning firm which specializes in community development and participation. Karen currently serves as the Environmental and Climate Justice Chair for the Virginia State Conference NAACP and provides resources and support to local communities to address environmental injustices, promote efforts to improve quality of life and health, and advocate for transformative policy and program changes. 


Carolyn Conant, Technical Assistance Coordinator - ACEEE

Carolyn works on ACEEE’s Residential Retrofits for Energy Equity (R2E2) initiative, which provides deep technical assistance to state, local, and tribal governments as well as community-based organizations to jumpstart energy upgrades for single family and multifamily affordable housing, especially in frontline communities. She joined ACEEE in 2022. Prior to joining ACEEE, Carolyn managed Fort Collins, Colorado, Utilities’ Bloomberg Mayors Challenge-winning residential energy efficiency program, Epic Homes. Before that she worked on municipal sustainability objectives, community engagement, strategic planning, and implementation related to Fort Collins’ Our Climate Future Plan, which centers equity and leads with race while working toward the community’s clean energy, waste reduction, and carbon reduction goals. Carolyn earned a master of arts in environmental sociology from Colorado State University and a bachelor of arts in social and cultural analysis and metropolitan studies from New York University.

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