Marianne Cusato is well-known for her design work on the Katrina Cottages, now sold in kit form at Lowe’s Home Improvement outlets nationwide. In 2006, her 308-square-foot Katrina Cottage won the Smithsonian Institute’s Cooper-Hewitt Design Museum’s “People’s Design Award.” In June 2006, Congress appropriated $400 million for an alternative emergency housing program, based on the idea of the Katrina Cottage.
Cusato is the author of two books: Get Your House Right: Architectural Elements to Use and Avoid, with Ben Pentreath, Richard Sammons and Leon Krier, foreword by HRH The Prince of Wales (January 2008, Sterling Publishing) and The Value of Design (February 2008, James Hardie).
One of the nations foremost building science experts, Mark LaLiberte has devoted over two decades to educating the homebuilding industry about the benefits of constructing durable, energy-efficient, sustainable and healthier homes. He co-created the program curriculum for the Energy and Environmental Building Association (EEBA) Houses That Work program which is based on the U.S. Department of Energy’s Building America Program. In 2002. LaLiberte received a lifetime achievement award from the EEBA for his long-standing commitment to helping the home construction industry embrace building science. Mark currently works nationwide teaching nearly 8,000 builders & Architects annually.
LaLiberte has also served on the Board of the Cold Climate Research Center in Fairbanks, AK and is currently on the board of Blu Home Inc. He has also been seen on TLC’s Home Pro and Home Savvy series and the PBS Hometime series. He is the principle of LaLiberte Online and the founding partner of Building Knowledge Inc. based in Minneapolis and Denver.
Room & Board
Interior Design and Furnishings
For 30 years, Room & Board, a Minneapolis-based furniture retailer, has focused on offering great design that’s beautiful, affordable and durable. The company works closely with American artisans and family-owned businesses, and is proud that 85% of its products are American made. Room & Board works directly with furniture makers—eliminating the middleman—to offer exclusive designs, the finest natural materials and the best value to customers. The company also makes it easy for customers to get a personal look that’s perfect for any space.
Room & Board sets the standard for custom, quality furniture options that aren’t complicated. Customers can shop in stores, online or over the phone and receive the same great service from expert Design Associates. Room & Board has stores in Minneapolis, Chicago, Denver, Orange County, Los Angeles, San Francisco, New York and Atlanta.
Christian Wagley is principal of Sustainable Town Concepts, a consulting firm working under the premise that the most environmentally-beneficial thing we can do is to build healthy places for people. He has worked on environmental issues in Florida and the southeast for over 15 years. His early training in the environmental sciences and experience working with new urban towns led him to realize that the way we design and construct the built environment has the greatest impact on natural systems.
In recent years, he has focused on green building and development, with a special interest in traditional neighborhoods. He oversaw environmental and green building issues for several years for the much-acclaimed new town of Alys Beach, Fla. Wagley is a certifying agent for the Florida Green Building Coalition and a field agent of the Florida Solar Energy Center.
Kendall Horne is a landscape designer specializing in creating low-maintenance, sustainable and native landscapes. Horne is currently the landscape coordinator for Alys Beach, Fla., a green neighborhood development located in the Florida Panhandle. She holds a B.A. in landscape architecture from Mississippi State University.
Producer and Host
BUILDER is the housing industry’s #1 business magazine. It is the official publication of the National Association of Home Builders and the winner of more prestigious awards than any other industry publication, including publication of the year from the American Society of Business Publication Editors. BUILDER is the leading information source for the home building industry, in print, online, and in person.
Marketing and Web/Virtual Tour Development
Decision Counsel empowers companies by facilitating intelligent decisions about marketing strategy, utilization of web technology and application development. A strategic professional services firm that develops and executes marketing and technology solutions centered on building brands, leveraging emerging technology and building sustainable customer relationships, Decision Counsel ensures that the programs, campaigns and products they introduce reach optimal velocity in the shortest amount of time.
BHI Media is a full-service production company offering turnkey script-to-screen production of a wide range of Rich Media products. The company was formed in 2005 by a consortium of some of the nation’s top new home builders for the sole purpose of creating a high-quality, low cost television alternative for marketing their products. Based on the success of that effort, BHI Media grew to encompass a wide range of production services and soon expanded outside the building industry to create projects for anyone, anywhere in the world.
IWPR Group is a public relations and marketing firm specializing in solutions to challenging issues facing our society. We work with authors, visionaries, nonprofits and companies in the fields of design, architecture, sustainability, planning, housing, energy and the environment.