About Us

Most Californians would agree that there are better ways to develop and maintain our communities. Build It Green (BIG) believes that regenerative communities—which are not extractive and go beyond sustainability —are the way forward so that everyone can live in a place that’s affordable, equitable, safe and healthy. 
In our first two decades, BIG worked with people in the housing industry to normalize building green homes throughout California and establish the GreenPoint Rated program. After years of success focused on individual homes, BIG expanded our focus to transforming communities as a whole. That’s why today we connect changemakers— like developers, community advocates, nonprofits, government officials, and more—throughout the state to break down silos, form new partnerships, and come up with innovative ways to design our communities and homes that don’t compromise on the things that matter most.

Our Mission and Vision

Every Californian deserves to live in a safe, affordable home in a resilient and thriving neighborhood. Build It Green’s mission is to help accomplish that by providing credible and accessible resources to develop regenerative communities. We envision, and are committed to creating, a healthy housing ecosystem that fosters the well-being of individuals, communities, and the natural world. We exist to support all those who share this commitment.

Why Our Work Matters

For multiple generations, how we have built our homes and neighborhoods in the United States has scarred both planet and people. Irreplaceable ecosystems have been paved over, watersheds decimated, and fragile natural balances that protect us from the likes of catastrophic fires and floods have been tipped. Today, climate change is an existential threat to the safety and prosperity of all people and natural systems. Addressing climate change requires us to fundamentally shift the way we design, build, and maintain our homes and communities.

At the same time, the places we live have been built on an historical foundation of structural and institutional bias and discrimination. Racist lending and land use practices have been commonplace. Failure to build affordable housing has left households with low incomes struggling to afford food, transportation, and other essentials. Black and brown neighborhoods with lower incomes have been burdened by pollution, underinvested in, and dissected by highways.

As we envision and enable new approaches to building our homes and communities, we must dismantle the structures and institutions that have generated these social and environmental injustices. When we do, we will have communities that are just, thriving, economically robust, and that exist in harmony with both the natural world and the places they are found.

Our Approach

Build It Green nurtures collaboration among those that see how homes and neighborhoods can advance the vitality of natural systems, social and environmental justice, and the ability for places to be resilient and evolve as the world changes.

We create resources to enable the network we serve to make practical progress, and to overcome institutional barriers standing in the way of homes and neighborhoods where everyone can thrive and take pride.
We elevate aspirations about what can be achieved by co-creating a shared sense of what’s possible through collaboration and new ways of thinking.

We offer professional training for those pursuing green building careers, as well as a credible and accessible residential green building rating system, GreenPoint Rated, for California and the nation.

Our Guiding Values

Place-Sourced
Place-Sourced

Integrate with the landscape and existing community character.

Adaptable
Adaptable

Provide a flexible approach for different environments, aesthetics, and users.

Affordable
Attainable

Creatively leverage existing
financial resources to make accessible to many.

Equity_Value
Equity

Engage those most affected, both presently and historically, to lead benefit from community change.

Accessible
Accessible

Reduce unnecessary complexity to empower homeowners and building industry professionals.

Human-Scale
Human-Scale

Enhance people’s health and well-being, support unique needs and foster human interactions.

Life-Generating
Life-Generating

Select materials and processes that generate new social, economic, and environmental well-being.

Collaboration_Value
Collaboration

Drive integrative, systemic, and durable change through co-creation, collective action, and stewardship.

Alex Coba

Communications Associate

As a proud California native from Stockton, Alex brings a wealth of experience and a versatile skill set. He has a solid communication background with a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism and Public Relations from California State University, Chico. Alex is adept at strategic communications and media relations, with experience gathering and sharing stories from his local communities that uplift the unique spirit and values of those places. He is excited to join Build It Green, where he can apply his talents to further BIG’s mission to help communities across California thrive.