Founder & CEO, MBA
Rachel has an MBA in Sustainable Systems and a Certificate in the Sustainable Built Environment, both from Bainbridge Graduate Institute. She also has 16 years of experience in housing people as a Seattle real estate broker. An advocate for the necessary shift toward a sustainable built environment, Rachel understands the impact that the space in which we spend our time has upon our health, mindset and spirit. Rachel is invested in making the business case for sustainable, healthy housing that supports, in multiple ways, the people in need of emergency housing. She believes this work is a social justice issue.
Founder & CMO, M.Ed.
Jennifer has 18 years experience working as a therapist and care manager in the mental health field. She understands the importance of listening to clients’ needs as a way to assist them in discovering solutions and meeting goals. Here at Close to Home, she feels her role is very similar: tuning in to customers’ post-disaster housing needs and problems and matching them with the most appropriate shelter solutions. Jennifer is excited to be a part of Close to Home because she believes disaster housing in the U.S. can be accomplished in a more cost-efficient, humane and sustainable manner.
Jim Burton Architects, aka BLIP Design, is an award-winning firm dedicated to Modern “Green” design. Jim believes buildings should touch the land lightly, and incorporate energy efficiency, materials & water efficiency, healthy home strategies, and environmental stewardship, with the goal of creating a model for others in how to build in a responsible and sustainable way. Jim subscribes to the 2030 Challenge, and the Passive House standard, and envisions a day when all buildings are not just sustainable and high-performance, but regenerative and restorative.
Jim has 20 years of experience in residential, institutional, office, and other project types. He is a Certified Passive House Consultant, and a LEED Accredited Professional. He is a member of the American Institute of Architects, Passive House Northwest, Solar Washington, and the Northwest EcoBuilding Guild. He is currently serving on the Board of Passive House Northwest.
Jennifer has a Bachelor of Architecture degree from the U. of Detroit Mercy and a certificate in the Sustainable Built Environment from the Bainbridge Graduate Institute. Jennifer worked in the residential design and build world for several years in various places around the nation before joining Sellen Construction. Currently, Jennifer is an accomplished sustainability consultant and Project Manager with Sellen Sustainability, a wholly owned subsidiary of Sellen Construction. As a LEED and Living Future Accredited Professional with 20 years of industry experience, Jennifer guides teams through LEED certification compliance efforts and other sustainability requirements to ensure that projects meet objectives. She has helped many corporate customers obtain and exceed their LEED goals including Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Vulcan Real Estate, Russell Investments, Museum of History and Industry, King Street Station, Boeing’s Museum of Flight, and many others.
Jennifer is also involved in the community, beyond Close to Home, as a Board Member of OUT for Sustainability, a past committee member of EarthShare of WA, and a YWCA Mentor in 2004.
Reverend John Halas is the minister for the Men’s Group and the Compassion Through Loss Drop-In Group at the Center for Spiritual Living in Seattle. He became a licensed practitioner in 2000 and a minister of Religious Science in 2004. In both positions he has supported individuals and couples in integrating spiritual wisdom into their lives through retreats, classes, and individual guidance. Before joining the staff at the Center for Spiritual Living in 2006, he facilitated relationship retreats and classes with HeartPath Retreats. John is a Professional Engineer, specializing in buildings of all sizes, from homes to high rises. He was a lead structural engineer on the eighth tallest building in the world, the Columbia Center of Seattle. Reverend Halas integrates the spiritual wisdom of a minister with the practical wisdom of a professional engineer using the languages of logic, poetry, visual arts, and spiritual visioning. He has been educated in the art and science of relationships in the classroom and in the real experience of a 34 year marriage.
Erin Hulme works with companies, multilaterals, government and non-profits on cross-sector partnerships. She currently works in Seattle at the Pacific Northwest Ballet where she works with local corporations and their community relations and corporate responsibiliy departments. Before moving to Seattle she was the Americas Manager of the International Business Leaders Forum (IBLF) where she managed strategic partnerships and initiatives with Fortune 500 companies and global stakeholders, such as the US State Department Global Partnership Initiative, UNDP, IFC, and the UN Secretary-General’s Taskforce for Business and Human Rights. Previous to IBLF, Erin worked at the United Nations Foundation (UNF) where she supported the Partnership Development team in cultivating new global public-private partnerships.
Erin has a Sustainable Systems MBA from the Bainbridge Graduate Institute and graduated summa cum laude from the Portland State University. She also holds certificates from the Partnership Brokers Accreditation Scheme, the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) and Center on Philanthropy Indiana University.
Michael "Luni" Libes
Luni is a 22+ year, career serial entrepreneur, who has founded six startups, five of which continue to operate. Most recently, he founded Fledge, the “conscious company” accelerator and Kick, “our” incubator. Starting in 2011, Luni switched focus from starting and building “tech” startups to advising, mentoring, and educating socially and environmentally “conscious” entrepreneurs. As Entrepreneur in Residence and Faculty at the Bainbridge Graduate Institute, he teaches and mentors MBA candidates on the process of sustainable business planning. As Entrepreneur in Residence Emeritus at the University of Washington’s Center for Commercialization, he worked with students, faculty, and researchers in turning their research into startup companies. And as author of The Next Step series of books (lunarmobiscuit.com), Luni hopes to help thousands of other conscious entrepreneurs in their endeavors.
Since 2010, Stacy Noland has been directing teams of student researchers, citizen scientists, aspiring filmmakers, and emerging social innovators on a campaign to research and document the strategies and tactics, tools and procedures, best practices and critical lessons learned by individuals working to help their communities rebuild and recover after experiencing major catastrophic events.
His teams have deployed to, observed, and documented the response and recovery efforts after Hurricanes Katrina, Isaac, and Sandy, the Deepwater Horizon oil disaster, the super tornadoes that struck Joplin, Tuscaloosa, and Moore, OK, as well as the floods, fire, drought and torrential rainstorms that ravaged California and Colorado. Most recently, his team deployed to the Oso Landslide to assist local, state, and federal incident command units with the response and recovery efforts. In 2013 Noland helped the Filipino Community of Seattle raise money in support of Super Typhoon Haiyan relief and in 2014 he led a campaign to proclaim March 22, 2014 as the “Great East Japan Earthquake Remembrance Day” in the City of Seattle.
In 1999, two years before the 7.0 Nisqually earthquake, Stacy helped launch Seattle Project Impact, a public, private, and nonprofit partnership with the City of Seattle to help residential homeowners seismically retrofit and earthquake-proof their homes. The program was a great success.
Currently, Mr. Noland is in the fifth year of production of Storm Surge, a feature documentary chronicling the lives of five Gulf Coast families working to rebuild their lives, livelihoods, and communities in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina and the BP Deepwater Horizon oil incident. Storm Surge is slated for release spring of 2015.
Stacy is also a volunteer social media trainer for Humanity Road, a non-profit organization that delivers disaster preparedness and response information to the global mobile public before, during, and after a disaster. He is also a community catalyst and field innovator for the Field Innovation Team, which delivers cutting edge technology solutions to help first responders save people, pets, and property during a disaster.
Mike is a graduate of Washington State University where he received a Bachelor of Architecture. Following his formal education, Mike began a required architectural internship that led to an Architectural license in Washington State. At this point, Mike has practiced for more than 30 years, working on many building types ranging from single-family homes to hospitals, airports and university buildings. Along the way, Mike accumulated a number of additional skills, all related to building design and construction. Ten years ago, he became a LEED Accredited Professional. He worked as a green building consultant and has experience with both USGBC’s LEED Rating Systems and LFI’s Living Building Challenge.
Presently, Mike works as a renewable energy professional. He works for a certified ”B Corp” in Seattle. Their triple bottom line approach to business management balances financial, social and environmental behavior while competing in the for-profit renewable energy marketplace. Mike’s deep knowledge of building systems blends well with his focus on energy. Mike also holds NABCEP’s Technical Sales certification.
In addition to helping with Close to Home, Mike is on the Board of Trustees for Ryther, a non-profit organization that serves children and families in need of mental health services. Mike is dedicated to ensuring that Ryther remains viable and resilient well into the future.
Bruce Schatzman is best known for being Founder and CEO of StudyManager, the pioneering company that was the first to make software available for medical research management. Bruce created and grew the company with no outside capital, eventually selling it in 2012 to Merge Healthcare after leading it for 18 years. In addition to his time at StudyManager, Bruce has over 20 years experience as an entrepreneur and software designer, having worked on many consulting projects for Microsoft in the early 1990s. He also held technical and project management positions at Xerox Corporaton and Tektronix. Currently, Bruce is CEO of Path9 LLC, a software consulting company that provides project leadership to Life Sciences companies. In his spare time, he works as a mentor to startup companies and is very active with Close To Home.