Honored for Green

Smart Home Named to Green Hall of Fame

Jim Gaston, Smart Home DirectorIn a recent ceremony, the Smart Home Program was inducted as a member of the inaugural class of the International Green Industry Hall of Fame. The Fresno, Calif.-based organization selected six total inductees, which included people and organizations.

Duke’s Smart Home is used as a dorm, research and educational program that emphasizes energy efficient and sustainable living. Visit the Smart Home's new website.

“It’s great that others are recognizing the work that Duke students are doing at the Smart Home to promote smarter living and contribute to the sustainable movement,” said Jim Gaston, director of the Smart Home Program. “As part of the International Green Hall of Fame, the Duke Smart Home Program will be an inspiration to others who seek a more sustainable lifestyle.”

Along with the Smart Home Program, other inductees were:

* The City of Fresno, Calif. recycling program
* Driptech, an international water technologies company
* Blogger and TV host Josh Dorfman, the “Lazy Environmentalist”
* Grundfos, an industrial water pump supplier with a focus on fighting climate change
* ACORE, an organization dedicated to promoting renewable energy
* Ray Anderson received a Lifetime Achievement Award for his work as founder of Interface Global, an environmentally-responsible manufacturer of home décor.

The selection criteria for the inductees included analysis of the environmental benefit, innovation, widespread applicability and more of each inductee. Sam Geil, chairman of the International Green Industry Hall of Fame’s board of directors, said that Duke’s Smart Home Program was selected because it was truly unique, with no peers to which it compared.

“It’s innovative and it’s a first for best practices in that kind of student living and research environment,” Geil said. “It’s a pioneering building and program, and we simply couldn’t find anyone else doing it as well as Duke is.”

The Smart Home Program was nominated for the hall of fame by Chris Brasier, an architect who oversaw the building of the Smart Home. In addition to his own letter, supporting nominations were sent from representatives from the U.S. Green Building Council and John Deere.

“The Duke Smart Home Program is an inspiration to international audiences and will undoubtedly continue to lead the conversation about how excellence in education leads to greater environmental awareness and conversation efforts,” Julia Feder, manager of LEED Education Resources for the Green Building Council, wrote in the nomination.

The Smart Home Program’s selection into the hall of fame is among other awards the program has received, including an “Excellence in Green Building Education Award” from the Green Building Council in 2009 and the “Green Non-profit Education Program of the Year” award from the Triangle Business Journal in 2008.

“As the only LEED Platinum building on Dukes campus, the Home Depot Smart Home is a symbol of Duke's commitment to leading the way to more sustainable and smarter lifestyles,” said Gaston, the director of the Smart Home Program.