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Prepared to Design for ZNE?

October 11, 2018 @ 8:00 am - 10:00 am PDT

$15 – $25


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Prepared to Design for Zero Net Energy (ZNE)?

Learning Units: 2

Join us for a multi-part panel discussion dedicated to helping small firms design and achieve net zero energy building design. With a focus on residential design and construction, the panelists will review the current issues and challenges facing architects today, from increasingly stringent code requirements to how professional services might respond and adapt. As the architect’s role continues to evolve, clients will increasingly look toward our profession for input on how to do more with less- join us for a discussion on navigating these issues.

As spelled out in the California Energy Efficiency Strategic Plan, the state has ambitious goals for the development of zero net energy buildings. These include:

  • All new residential construction will be zero net energy (ZNE) by 2020.
  • All new commercial construction will be ZNE by 2030
  • 50% of commercial buildings will be retrofit to ZNE by 2030
  • 50% of new major renovations of state buildings will be ZNE by 2025.

In 2016, the Department of General Services issued the definition of ZNE building as being “an energy-efficient building where, on a source energy basis, the actual annual consumed energy is less than or equal to the on-site renewable generated energy.”

Photo Credit: Bridge House by Dan Brunn Archicture, exhibiting ZNE strategies

Refreshments Provided By: Louis Poulsen


  • John Zinner, LEED Fellow – Principal & Founder, Zinner Consultants
  • Lisa Matthissen, FAIA – National Sustainability Design Director, HGA & Chair, AIA|California Committee On The Environment (COTE)
  • Dan Brunn, AIA – Founding Principal, Dan Brunn Architecture
  • Moe Fakih, LEED AP (O+M, RATER, QAD), CCP, GBP, BPI, AT TECH, WELL AP – Vice President, VCA Green

Moderator: Ric. Abramson, FAIA –  Founder & Firm Principal, WORKPLAYS studio*architecture

John Zinner, LEED Fellow – Principal & Founder, Zinner Consultants

John Zinner, Zinner Consultants principal and a LEED AP since 2002, founded the firm in 1990. He brings clients a broad sustainability and green building perspective as well as experience in policy development, project and program planning, and project management. His leadership has been recognized through numerous awards, he has lectured nationwide before professional, university and public audiences, and he has been interviewed on Good Morning America. He was awarded LEED Fellow by the U.S. Green Building Council in 2012.

John has developed and managed groundbreaking sustainability and green building programs for, among others, Playa Vista, Whole Foods, Boeing Corporation, the Los Angeles Unified School District, and the cities of Rancho Cucamonga, Santa Monica and Fayetteville, North Carolina. He has served as the Principal-in-Charge of 60 LEED certified projects, including 10 that earned Platinum, for clients such as UCLA, Westfield, Lincoln Property and Tishman Speyer. His marquis certified projects include the Metropolitan Water District’s LEED Platinum Water + Life Museum in Hemet, CA, the first Platinum museum, and the Flight 93 National Memorial in Stoystown, PA.

He is a member of the Board of Directors of the Collaborative for High Performance Schools (CHPS) and Co-Chair of its National Technical Committee, a former Board member of the US Green Building Council Los Angeles Chapter, a member of the Climate Action Santa Monica Advisory Board, and Vice President of the Santa Monica Conservancy. John previously served as the chair of both the Santa Monica Planning and Housing Commissions. Prior to founding ZC, John served as both Energy Coordinator and Planning Advisor for the City of Los Angeles Office of the Mayor, and founded and managed the Los Angeles office of an environmental consulting firm. He holds an MA in Urban and Regional Planning from the University of Southern California, and a BA in Political Science from The Colorado College.

Lisa Matthiessen, FAIA – National Sustainable Design Director, HGA

Lisa is an architect and sustainability expert, nationally-recognized for her commitment to deep green design in the building industry. Her diverse experience ranges from LEED project management on individual buildings to policy development and sustainable master planning. For more than 20 years she has passionately led teams to achieve high-performance results at every scale. She has led the successful certification of more than 20 projects for academic and institutional clients, including the University of Virginia, the Cooper Union, UCLA and Kaiser. She is a strong communicator who understands the perspectives of team members, from clients to cost planners to architects and engineers, successfully managing the cost implications of high performance design. As the National Sustainable Design Director for Hammel Green and Abrahamson (HGA), Lisa is responsible for developing processes for the delivery of sustainability across market sectors and disciplines for this 800+ person national design firm.

Dan Brunn, AIA – Founding Principal, Dan Brunn Architecture

Dan Brunn, AIA, has developed commercial and residential projects worldwide since establishing his firm, Dan Brunn Architecture, in 2005. He believes an architect’s role is to craft spaces that respect the site, provoke sensuous interaction, and heighten the user’s connection with the space. As a very young child, Dan was drawn to Legos as a means to explore building structures and continues to play with the balance of complexity and minimalism in his work.
Born in Israel and raised in Los Angeles since the age of seven, Dan embraces an international and experimental approach to design. “In Tel Aviv, I was surrounded by Bauhaus- style architecture,” Dan explains. “The restraint of these buildings taught me that space and how we experience that space are of paramount importance.”

As a young architect, only 40 years old, he has produced remarkably diverse projects— from award- winning restaurants to single-family residences, commercial showrooms and retail spaces. Consistent throughout each typology is an honoring of materiality, the ability to infuse ethereal natural light, and a tactful “hiding of mechanics.” His portfolio also includes furniture design in a variety of sleek, highly functional pieces offering streamlined solutions for the living room, bedroom, and bath.

Prior to establishing his firm, Dan was Lead Project Designer at John Friedman Alice Kimm Architects, where he served as project architect on the National AIA award-winning design of the Los Angeles Design Center. He also taught a Masters studio at the Boston Architectural Center, and served as design studio instructor at Harvard Graduate School of Design (GSD) and the USC School of Architecture.

Recently named one of Architectural Digests’s Top Ten Rising Stars and selected as one of the top 15 Los Angeles Architects based architects by Build Direct. Dan earned a BA in Architecture from the University of Southern California in 2001 and an MA in Architecture from Harvard (GSD) University in 2005. To draw inspiration from movement and rhythm, he composes music and performs with his band, DLD. Explaining the relationship, he notes: “Architecture should capture the rhythm of a client’s inner being, propelling the user through the space with movement. Good architecture is temporal and evolves as needs and technologies change.”

Vice President, VCA Green

Responsible for overseeing and managing a team of highly skilled consultants offering services that include California Green Building Code, Building Commissioning, LEED, Energy Modeling and GreenPoint Rated. Host educational events to inform building officials & developers on recent changes to CALGreen and energy codes. Perform direct Commissioning and Green Rater verification of residential & commercial new construction projects. Proficient with regards to cost effective, rapid payback energy design that produces favorable net present value. Bi-lingual in Arabic.

Ric. Abramson, FAIA – Founder & Firm Principal, WORKPLAYS studio*architecture

The WORKPLAYS was founded by Ric. Abramson, FAIA in 2003 after his four-year tenure as a design partner in the Santa Monica firm of David Lawrence Gray Architects. A former Fulbright scholar in Italy and Visiting Artist at the American Academy in Rome, Mr. Abramson divides his time between his professional interests (including innovative infill subdivisions, multi-unit housing, custom residential work, mixed-use developments, commercial  and urban design projects), land use consulting services, personal academic research, and local community involvement throughout the Southland.

Ric. has served as a member of the architectural faculties at the USC School of Architecture (1998-2014) and SCIArc (1992-98). His professional service includes terms on the AIA|California Council, AIA|Los Angeles and Center for Architecture & Urban Design L.A. Board of Directors. Within his community, he has served as a Public Facilities Commissioner and chaired an affordable housing non-profit Board. At the national level, Ric. is currently representing the California region on the AIA’s Strategic Council in Washington DC as well as the AIA|SFx Small Firm Exchange.

Locally, his firm is currently consulting with L.A. County on developing a new compact house ordinance that focuses on affordable home ownership.  Ric. has continued to be been very active in small firm education and advocacy, innovative housing solutions and sustainable design policy. California Home & Design Magazine recognized his influence on design and the environment and named Workplays studio on their “10 to Watch List” as an energetic firm “poised to make its mark on California architecture”.


October 11, 2018
8:00 am - 10:00 am PDT
$15 – $25
Event Categories:
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AIA Los Angeles
AIA|LA Commitee On The Environment (COTE)


Helms Design Center
8745 Washington Blvd.
Culver City, CA 90232 United States
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