Meet the Candidates for the Board of Directors

This year the Illinois Green Alliance Board Elections Committee are pleased to present 8 candidates for consideration for 5 open board seats. The Board of Directors guides Illinois Green's strategic vision — to make net zero buildings feasible, affordable, and so commonplace that every building in Illinois by 2050 is net zero.

In 2023, there are five open Board seats to be elected by the Illinois Green Alliance membership through this ballot.

The Board Elections Committee would like to thank all of the members who submitted their names for consideration.

The elections period opens November 3, 2022 and closes at 11:45 p.m. on December 2, 2022. All active Illinois Green members have received a direct link to their ballot in their email.


Kevin Augustyn

Senior Vice President, North American CMBS, Global Structured Finance, DBRS Morningstar

Kevin Augustyn, a Senior Vice President, North American CMBS, Global Structured Finance at DBRS Morningstar, and is running for a second term on the Illinois Green Alliance Board. Before joining DBRS Morningstar, Kevin began his career as a city planner with a professional focus on community economic development and historic preservation. His first professional assignment was to return to his hometown of Hammond, Indiana where he served initially as the Land Use Planner and eventually as the Director of the planning department. The balance of his career has been focused on urban infill development here in Chicago, responsible for the redevelopment of Piper's Alley and the North Pier as well as the development of River East Center and other Chicago developments. In his current role at DBRS Morningstar, he is working on several ESG related investment initiatives and leading Morningstar’s effort to provide credit ratings for CPACE (Commercial Property Assessed Clean Energy) loans on a national basis. He offers the perspective of a finance and development professional with an interest in building links between sustainability and finance.

Kevin is excited to continue to utilize his background in ESG investing, commercial real estate development, and structured finance to focus on green building initiatives and their impact on reducing the carbon footprint. In particular he believes the Illinois Green Alliance can be an effective partner and resource for commercial real estate developers, owners and investors who are looking for resources to implement their net zero carbon pledges and other ESG/Sustainability initiatives. These same resources could be made available to companies in other business lines that have made these pledges and have these types of initiatives. IGA can also become a resource for providing information and developing conversations around the various financing programs that are available to help with these initiatives.

Learn more about Kevin on his LinkedIn profile.


Lindsay Buckwell, MBA in Sustainability

Senior Program Manager, Evergreen Consulting Group

Lindsay manages various energy efficiency programs across the Midwest and New England, spanning from controlled environmental agriculture, to food service, and small business. 

Prior to joining Evergreen, Lindsay worked as a consultant to McDonald’s Corporation where she managed energy efficiency programs across their 15,000 restaurant U.S. portfolio. In addition, she worked with their sustainability team to draft a water conservation plan for the corporation. She is most proud of working on the first net zero quick service restaurant in the U.S. that McDonald’s opened in Orlando, Florida. Before her work with McDonald’s, Lindsay held various roles in new construction, multifamily retrofit, and single-family income eligible energy efficiency programs.

Lindsay joined Illinois Green immediately upon moving to Chicago and has enjoyed serving on the Auxiliary Board for the past three years, along with having volunteered for the EPIC sustainability challenge and coordinating various events. On the board, Lindsay looks forward to providing a utility focused perspective to implementing the strategic plan and incentivizing net zero initiatives in the Chicagoland area. Bringing efficiency and sustainability to the diverse communities across Chicago is where Lindsay’s passions lie, and she is excited by the idea of executing this passion with the Illinois Green Board.

She looks forward to bringing a unique perspective to conversations and strategy. On the board, she would like to focus on expanding Illinois Green’s presence in a diverse way — both with individuals and corporations. Lindsay believes the success of the current strategic plan will be dependent on the growth of the organization’s reach across the greater Chicago area. As a three year member of the Auxiliary Board, Lindsay looks forward to making the transition to the Board of Directors while still liaising the thoughts and ideas of the two boards with one another. 

Learn more about Lindsay on her LinkedIn profile.


Juanita Garcia, LEED AP BD+C, WELL AP

Senior Project Manager, High Performance at Pepper Construction

Juanita Garcia is a Senior Project Manager at Pepper Construction Company. Drawing on more than 15 years of experience in the construction industry, Juanita joined Pepper's High Performance and Sustainable Construction team based on a shared commitment to improve people's quality of life through the built world. Among the first advocates to earn the LEED AP credential with the BD+C specialization, she joined Pepper to advance Carbon Drawdown strategies in the built environment. Juanita draws on her study of psychology, human rights, and massage therapy, which allows her to incorporate a well-rounded health and wellness perspective into the built environment.

A member since 2009, Juanita is excited advance the Illinois Green Alliance 2050 mission and promote Carbon Drawdown strategies. She has been committed to sharing the urgency to incorporate carbon drawdown strategies with broader audiences. Whether drawing lessons learned from the three little pigs with a group of students or using comedy to make technical information about refrigerants or energy efficiency more accessible, Juanita believes in bringing together people to actively work toward a healthier built environment.

Learn more about Juanita on her LinkedIn profile.


Deana Haynes

Director, Commercial Real Estate, ChargePoint

Deana Haynes, MBA, Assoc. AIA, NOMA, LEED AP BD+C, is a real estate executive with nearly 20 years of multidisciplinary experience in the industry. As Director of Commercial Real Estate at ChargePoint, she's expanding ChargePoint’s leadership in the Commercial Real Estate segment through the development of new technology solutions and business models that allow real estate organizations of all kinds to capitalize on the growing need for EV charging at their properties. Throughout her career, she has led global and domestic transformative business initiatives and strategic projects for high-profile clients and multi-national corporations. An experienced sustainability leader, she has also developed and implemented corporate sustainability strategies and green building transformation initiatives for a number of organizations. Her professional career includes tenure at leading organizations including JLL, Lendlease and Ernst & Young. She holds an MBA from Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management and earned a Bachelor of Science in Architectural Studies from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

Deana’s career has been underpinned by a foundation of, and passion for, sustainability and community engagement for the greater good. If elected to join the Illinois Green Alliance Board of Directors, she will leverage both her professional and non-profit experience to effect positive change and impact in the city and state that she calls home as well as the industry where she has spent her career. With over 10 years in non-profit leadership roles for organizations focused on education, homelessness and affordable housing, Deana understands the day-to-day and long-term challenges non-profits face and looks forward to supporting Illinois Green in achieving its mission, 2050 vision and strategic plan toward net zero.

Learn more about Deana on her LinkedIn profile.


Michelle McClendon, LEEP AP ID+C

Senior Project Executive and Public Sector Operational Leader, Gilbane Building Company

Michelle McClendon is a Senior Project Executive at Gilbane Building Company. With more than 18 years in the construction industry she has encompassed a diverse portfolio of projects including corporate headquarters, high-end and multi-family residential, schools, public use facilities and much more. She is a champion for sustainability, and healthy-high performing construction having worked on and successfully achieved certification under the LEED for Schools, LEED ID +C, LEED BD +C and WELL sustainability rating systems. As the Operational Leader for Gilbane’s K-12 and public sector market her commitment to promoting sustainability has increased as she is a primary stakeholder in providing direction to owners, colleagues and subcontractors in the planning and execution of healthy, and high-performing projects that directly impact the communities we live and work in. Prior to her role at Gilbane, Michelle was a Senior Project Manager at Leopardo Companies, Inc. and served as co-chairman of Leopardo Construction’s Sustainability Committee for nearly 10 years in which she helped steer corporate policy and practices around sustainability.

Having completed (2) years as a board member, Michelle has a strong desire to continue to serve the mission of Illinois Green and be an active champion of pushing forward the organization’s strategic plan. As a board member for Illinois Green, she takes a hands-on approach having served as the Justice, Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Committee chairman her first year. Michelle has worked to train and educate our communities, worked to engage the Chicago building community in their sustainability efforts and worked to build allies with partners in every community to advance resiliency and livability. As a member of Chicago Sustainable Construction Leaders, a LEED AP ID + C and a former college instructor of Green Building Trends and Technology Michelle knows the effort needed to help put sustainability in the forefront.

Michelle and her twin sister Myesha McClendon are co-founders of the Myesha and Michelle McClendon Scholarship Fund for African American Women pursuing undergraduate degrees in Engineering through the Alpha Kappa Alpha Educational Advancement Foundation. As an advocate for mentoring and STEM, Michelle is passionate about promoting lifelong learning and educating our next generation of leaders in STEM and sustainability!

Learn more about Michelle on her LinkedIn profile.



Sean Moran, LEED AP BD+C

Senior Project Manager, Clayco

Sean Moran is a Senior Project Manager at Clayco, a design-build General Contractor in Chicago, IL. With over 15 years of experience integrating design, engineering, and construction in the pursuit of sustainable buildings; Sean has been a student, practioner, and teacher of green building throughout his career. Sean has been a LEED AP, BD+C since 2010, received PHIUS Builder Certification in 2012, and has been a dedicated advocate to advancing the industry to align with the needs of the climate. Sean founded and owned Newgrange Design-Build in 2008, where he and his team were part of the LEED Platinum Green Exchange Building in Logan Square, and focused on the delivery of high-performing residential and commercial construction.

With the motivation to have a greater influence on the building industry, Sean has spent the last five years focused on bringing green-building practices to larger commercial and industrial projects while working for Skender and Clayco. Sean has delivered K-12, Higher-Ed, Multi-Family, and Industrial building projects; integrating Lean Construction, energy efficiency, and waste management best practices into the delivery process. Sean served as chair of the green committee at Skender and is a senior advisor on the Sustainability council at Clayco.

As an early supporter of the USGBC and member of the Illinois Chapter, Sean has found strong alignment with the IGA’s mission and his passion to improve the built environment. With memberships within the Carbon Leadership Forum and Sustainable Construction Leaders, Sean plans to utilize his relationships throughout the industry to support and advance the Illinois Green Alliance in bringing decarbonization to the forefront of the industry.

Learn more about Sean on his LinkedIn profile.


Prachi Sharma

Field & Outreach Manager, Slipstream

Prachi Sharma is a Field and Outreach Manager at Slipstream. Her responsibilities include managing a Midwest Utility Energy Efficiency Program for the Commercial, Industrial, and Public Sector New Construction Portfolios. The program provides energy modeling and financial incentives on energy conservation measures.

Prachi is an Architect by education and has worked with Non-Profit organizations in the field of conservation that gives her a unique perspective on both old and new practices of sustainability that leave a green footprint on the environment. Post her undergraduate degree in Architecture, she worked at a leading Real Estate development company in India. At DLF Home Developers Limited she managed the construction projects for the Residential portfolio. After 3 years at DLF, Prachi pursued a Master’s degree in Sustainable Management from DePaul University. Prachi also has a LEED Green Associate certification and is deeply passionate and committed to the field of sustainability.

She interned at the Illinois Green Alliance (IGA) in 2018 and has been volunteering with them for the past 5 years. Her key IGA engagements include liaising with Membership Engagement Committee, Auxiliary Board, Co-chair for the Sustainable day camp, Sustainable Facilities Mentorship, Neighborhood Power Project and the Equity Diversity and Inclusion committee.

A position at the Board of Directors of Illinois Green Alliance will offer her that opportunity to contribute to the community and make changes in a palpable way. Prachi has a strong drive to champion Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion to reiterate IGA’s mission of sustainable communities for all. As someone who identifies herself as an “Indian (Brown) Immigrant Woman” working in the sustainability industry, EDI for her comes down to empowering people. Like many others on the board, her experiences are unique, and she is committed to addressing the most complex challenges of the role both creatively and collaboratively.

Learn more about Prachi on her LinkedIn profile.


Hans Thummel, AIA, LEED AP BD+C

Studio Leader — Science + Technology Practice, SmithGroup

Hans Thummel is the Chicago Science & Technology Studio Leader for SmithGroup, a leading A&E design firm. He is a longstanding licensed, LEED AP BD+C architect. He has acted as LEED administrator, strategic organizer, and conference presenter on resilience, adaptive reuse, energy/building retrofits, and high-performance building envelopes. Hans’ current projects range widely across the S&T spectrum, notably including a heat recovery system for Argonne National Lab that will drive climate-resilient infrastructure and operations and help meet DOE mandates for net-zero federal building emissions. Hans’ career spans four decades with industry-leading firms including SOM, Krueck & Sexton, Lohan Associates, Perkins & Will and SmithGroup. His roles as a design, technical and management leader encompass a broad range of small to large complex projects for public and private sector clients both domestically and abroad.

Serving the Illinois Green Alliance reflects an aspiration converging from Hans’ architectural career and lifelong passion for sustaining earth’s resources, further bolstered by his industry’s increased activism for resilient, sustainable design. A more recent focus to support scientific research led to his current role. Hans’ outlook is uniquely influenced by his father - a clergy leader who answered Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s call to march in Selma for voting rights. As a leader in a firm with well-established justice, equity, diversity and inclusion initiatives, Hans’ interdisciplinary practice allows him to advocate not only for engineering advances in research and resilience, but also for collaborative human advantage - as lab environments engage more robustly with workplace, higher ed, and healthcare environments. Hans sees these design collisions as engines for innovation, diversity, and inclusion; creating places where disenfranchised individuals and communities gain equal access to better environments, health, and socioeconomic mobility. If elected, Hans will add his strategic, entrepreneurial leadership skills to Illinois Green Alliance’s public engagement and action.

Learn more about Hans on his LinkedIn profile.

All Illinois Green members will receive a link in their email from our third-party system, ElectionBuddy, to access their ballot on November 3, 2022. All ballots have a personalized code, so you cannot forward the link.

If you are a current member, and did not receive a ballot, please email Maggie Olson - to verify your membership and receive a ballot.