On September 25 and 26, 92 brownfields leaders from 24 states and Canada came together in Washington, D.C. for the inaugural National Brownfields Leadership Summit, a first-of-its-kind national gathering that brought together a wide variety of practitioners from the public, private and non-profit sectors.
The energy in the room was palpable -- people had traveled from as far away as Alaska to join fellow brownfielders in the nation’s capital. The Summit’s goal was to put practitioners directly in contact with federal agency leaders, provide updates about different federal agencies’ programs, and take our message of support for brownfield redevelopment to Capitol Hill. It was exciting to see so many brownfielders together in one place – as Michael Goldstein, Managing Partner with the Goldstein Environmental Law Firm put it on LinkedIn, this event was “like Burning Man for Brownfielders.”
If you missed the Summit, we have more where this came from, and if you attended the Summit, we want your thoughts. We’re already thinking about what 2019’s Summit will look like. Please help us out by taking a few minutes to respond to our survey, which you’ll also receive by email. Your needs drive our programming, so please help us shape what comes next.
We are profoundly grateful to all who attended, and to our generous sponsors for making this event possible. Many, many thanks to our visionary friends at the following companies for their generous support:
- Greenberg Traurig
- Vita Nuova
- The Goldstein Environmental Law Firm
- BCA Consultants
- BRS, Inc.
- Capitol Environmental Services
- Hydrotechnology Consultants, Inc.
- Environmental Liability Transfer
- Bloomberg Environment
We’d also like to thank our promotional partners, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Urban Land Institute, Sustainable Strategies DC, RTM, LaBella, National Brownfileds Coalition, Smart Growth America and Brownfield Listings.
On September 25, Summit participants heard directly from agency decision makers and experts from a variety of agencies, including HUD, EPA, EDA, DOT and USDA. The gathering also featured a session on Opportunity Zones, a roundtable discussion on new challenges for brownfield redevelopment, and keynote remarks from EPA Deputy Assistant Administrator for the Office of Land and Emergency Management, Steven Cook.
On September 26, Summit participants took to Capitol Hill for a Congressional educational briefing and 37 meetings with Senators and Representatives, including members of the House Appropriations Committee. Participants pounded pavement on Capitol Hill all day, sharing messages about:
- The transformative impacts of brownfields redevelopment in communities around the country
- Support for EPA brownfields funding
- Support for EDA funding
- Support for including assessment and remediation as “substantial improvements” under forthcoming Opportunity Zones guidelines
To Summit participants, if you have questions or need help with follow up to Congressional offices, please contact Ken Brown at firstname.lastname@example.org. Please also tell those of us at CCLR and NALGEP how we can help with follow up to your meetings. You’ll hear more from us about Hill outreach in early 2019, when we organize a campaign to support funding for brownfield redevelopment in the FY 2020 budget.
Finally, check out and share the great material the the Summit has generated online. Attendees lit up Twitter with their stories from Capitol Hill -- we saw excellent photos come across CCLR’s page as brownfields leaders met with policy makers. Check out some of these tweets below:
- City of Los Angeles Sanitation and Environment with Senator Feinstein
- NYC Mayor's Office of Environmental Remediation
- CCLR and City of Portland
- CCLR and brownfield leaders with Representative Paul Tonko
- Martha Faust of Minnesota Brownfields with Representative Betty McCollum
- To see more tweets about the event, search #brownfieldleaders on twitter!
We look forward to hearing participants’ feedback and to making next year even better. Thank you again to all our brownfields leaders, sponsors, speakers and partners for making the inaugural National Brownfields Leadership Summit such a phenomenal success!
For pictures of the event, please visit our Facebook album. Please see Summit materials and Presentations below. Available presentations are linked to speaker's names.
Day 1 | September 25
8:30-8:45 Welcome and Opening Remarks
-Lee Ilan, Chief of Planning, New York City Office of Environmental Remediation
-Sarah Sieloff, Executive Director, Center for Creative Land Recycling (CCLR)
8:45-9:30 Roundtable with US Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD)
- Carrie Staton, Associate Director, West Virginia Brownfields Assistance Center
- Matt Ward, CEO, Sustainable Strategies DC
- Paul Webster, Director, Financial Management Division, HUD
- Moderator: Miles Ballogg, Senior Principal and Brownfields Practice Leader, Cardno
9:30-10:30 Roundtable on Opportunity Zones
- Kevin Gremse, Senior Director and East Team Leader, National Development Council
- Karen Lauerman, Executive Director, Lake County, IN Economic Alliance
- Jane Campbell, Senior Fellow, International Economic Development Council
- Andrew Jermolowicz, Assistant Deputy Administrator, USDA Rural Development more USDA resources here (Summary of Major Programs and Task Force on Agriculture and Rural Prosperity)
- Moderator: Michael Taylor, President and CEO, Vita Nuova
10:30-10:55 Networking Break in Exhibitor Area
Thank you to Hydrotechnology Consultants, Inc.
11:00-12:00 Roundtable with US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) on New Strategies for Overcoming Brownfields Challenges
- Steven Russo, Shareholder, Greenberg Traurig
- David Lloyd, Director, Office of Brownfields and Land Revitalization, US EPA
- Matthew Dalbey, Director Office of Community Revitalization, US EPA
- Moderator: Colleen Kokas, Executive Vice President, Environmental Liability Transfer
12:00-1:15 Lunch with Keynote Speaker Steven Cook, Deputy Assistant Administrator, US EPA Office of Land and Emergency Management
- Introduction by Michael Goldstein, Managing Partner, The Goldstein Environmental Law Firm
1:15-2:00 Roundtable with U.S. Economic Development Administration (EDA)
- Teri Goodman, Assistant City Manager, City of Dubuque, Iowa
- David Ives, Interim Director, Performance & National Programs Division, EDA
- Moderator: Michele Christina, Co-Owner, BRS Inc.
2:00-2:45 Roundtable with U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA)
- Todd Wilt, Operations Manager, City of Charles Town, West Virginia
- David Foster, Office of Rural Development, USDA
- Moderator: Jason Lichtenstein, Partner, Akerman LLP
2:45-3:10 Networking Break in Exhibitor Area
Thank You to Capitol Environmental Services, Inc.
3:15-4:00 Roundtable with U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT)
- Cindy Steinhauser, City Manager, City of Frankfurt, Kentucky
- Danielle Rinsler, Project Development Team Lead, Build America Bureau, US DOT
- Moderator: Belinda Richard, National Brownfields Program Manager, Terracon
4:00-5:00 Roundtable Discussion on New Strategies for Overcoming Brownfields Challenges
Moderator: Ken Brown, Policy Director, Center for Creative Land Recycling (CCLR)
- Remarks from Matt Ward, CEO, Sustainable Strategies DC
Day 2 | September 26
9:00-10:30 Brownfields Briefing for Summit Participants and Congressional Staff – 2007 Rayburn House Office Building
This session featured remarks from key Congressional leaders on the new brownfields law, discussion of other important federal policies, and presentations on local projects highlighting the importance of federal brownfields policies to local revitalization.
- Congressman David McKinley (R-WV), Vice Chair, Environment Subcommittee of the House Energy and Commerce Committee
- Congressman Paul Tonko (D-NY), Ranking Member, Environment Subcommittee of the House Energy and Commerce Committee
- Travis Blosser, Deputy Executive Director, West Virginia Municipal League
- Joel Markland, BCA Consultants
- Christopher Coes, Vice President, LOCUS
- Matt Ward, CEO, Sustainable Strategies, DC
- Moderator: Ken Brown, Policy Director, CCLR
Thank you to our generous sponsors: