After four years at the helm of the International Living Future Institute, CEO Amanda Sturgeon announced Tuesday that she plans to leave the Seattle-based nonprofit in February.
“I will take what I have learned from leading this incredible, passionate community and continue to impact the world in new ways,” Sturgeon wrote in an email to an ILFI mailing list. “I believe this is the decade that counts for global climate change and life on Earth as we know it, and I know that I will continue to work alongside you as we envision and bring forth a Living Future for all.”
Sturgeon wrote that she informed the ILFI doard of directors in December of her decision to step down in February..
She had taken over as CEO in January 2016, succeeding Jason F. McLennan, the charismatic founder of the Living Building Challenge (McLennan moved on become chair the ILFI board, but stepped down from that position last month). She oversaw significant expansion of the ILFI’s programs, including the rollout of Living Building Challenge 4.0, the Reveal building transparency label and the new Core building certification program.
Her chief legacy may lie in her championship of biophilic design. Sturgeon spearheaded ILFI’s Biophilic Design Initiative, and ILFI initiated the Kellert Award for Biophlic Design under her watch. She also authored a book on the topic, Creating Biophilic Buildings, which was published in 2017 by ILFI’s house imprint, Ecotone.
The UK native moved as a teen to Australia, where she studied architecture and became a citizen. After moving to the United States in the early 1980s, she practiced architecture in Seattle and, in 2000, joined the founding board of the Cascadia Green Building Council, which later evolved into ILFI. In 2010, she joined the organization’s staff.
Here’s Sturgeon’s fuil email.
When I started at the International Living Future Institute almost 10 years ago, I could not have imagined the success that we have achieved today. With over 650 Living Building projects in 23 countries, two thriving international Institutes, 27 affordable housing projects, and hundreds of Declare labels, we are now positioned for scale. Our success is possible because of the incredible community that shares our vision and demonstrates an unwavering commitment to its realization. I am so proud of the journey that we have been on together.
Today I would like to share with you that in early December, I advised the Board of Directors that I would be stepping down as CEO of ILFI at the beginning of February. I have always focused on having an exemplary leadership team in place so we have a strong bench for the future. The leadership team, together with members of the ILFI Board, has formed a transition team that will lead ILFI while the search begins for a new CEO.
I have been engaged with ILFI since my founding board position with the Cascadia Green Building Council in 2000. Now, with the organization in a strong position and with our programs ready to scale, the moment to transition to the next leader has come.
I will take what I have learned from leading this incredible, passionate community and continue to impact the world in new ways. I believe this is the decade that counts for global climate change and life on Earth as we know it, and I know that I will continue to work alongside you as we envision and bring forth a Living Future for all.
Thank you for your support of ILFI’s mission: to catalyze the transformation toward a more culturally rich, socially just and ecologically restorative future. I will be eternally proud of what we have accomplished together over the last decade, and am deeply grateful for your support.
PHOTO AT TOP: Amanda Sturgeon speaks at the Living Future unConference 2017 in Seattle.