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November 16, 2021
Turner’s Sustainability Summit explored the power of people to make a positive impact on the environment.
The Summit brought together 500 Turner colleagues with thought leaders to share ideas, learn, and inspire change at the company and the industry. The Summit reaffirms Turner’s commitment to invest in growing its in-house sustainability skills and meet the ever-evolving needs of clients.
Fifteen years ago, Turner made a formal commitment to sustainability. The company invested in enhancing the technical capabilities of its people that enables them to be stronger partners with clients. Turner is a recognized leader in delivering high-performance buildings and has now helped clients achieve their sustainability goals on more than 2,000 green building projects. Turner is also recognized for its leadership in improving the work environment for everyone on site and building with heightened environmental performance during the construction process.
Julia Gisewite, Vice President, Chief Sustainability Officer said, “The Summit harnessed the power of Turner’s people to improve the environment through the work we do every day. We are taking action to improve our performance and achieve higher expectations we have set for our company.” Gisewite continued, “Turner has implemented policies and programs to reduce the environmental impact of our operations. These include a no-idling and LED temporary lighting standard, and we are engaged in pilots to test the viability and performance of low- or zero-emission equipment.”
During the Sustainability Summit, Dr. Ayana Elizabeth Johnson, co-founder of the non-profit think tank Urban Ocean Lab, participated in a discussion that explored what we can accomplish as we harness the power of our collective action. She also discussed the need to act now and inspired participants to move the industry forward.
The COVID-19 pandemic has exposed the inequalities in the global health care system. Vulnerable populations are the most impacted and yet contribute the least to the climate crisis. Cate Oswald, Chief Policy and Partnership Officer at Partners in Health (PIH) shared how her organization is fighting health injustice caused by climate change. Oswald also shared how PIH is addressing global access to meaningful health care for the most marginalized people by working with local, district, and national governments to redefine how high-quality health care is delivered.
Climate change is a planet sized challenge, and businesses around the world are recognizing the benefits of engaging in sustainability. Jim Ellis, Corporate Vice President: Data Center Construction at Microsoft discussed how they are working at the intersection of technology and science to make decisions today for the good of tomorrow. Ellis shared that Microsoft is focused on the development and implementation of key strategies that ensure safe and efficient construction delivery of data centers worldwide that meet customer expectations and deliver sustainable shareholder value.
Several Turner leaders participated in a panel discussion on a range of issues including how clients are looking for collaborative partners to build more resilient and sustainable spaces. The panel was led by Monika Serrano, Resilience Program Manager and included Pete Hamill, Senior Vice President; Ben Kaplan, Senior Vice President, Technology Group; Lisa Ballentine, Senior Vice President, California; and, Katie Poss, Sustainability Program Lead, Technology Group.
Julia Gisewite said, “The Summit achieved its goal to bring people together and inspire them to collaborate with each other, our clients, and other industry partners to accelerate the change needed to improve the environmental performance in how and what we build.”