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The Green Building Matters Podcast with Charlie Cichetti

Dec 30, 2020

Sara Neff took Kilroy Realty Corporation from having no sustainability program to being named the #1 public real estate company across all asset classes on sustainability in the Americas by GRESB. At Kilroy, she oversees all sustainability initiatives such as the implementation of energy and water efficiency projects, solar and battery installations, green janitor education, all LEED certifications, the deployment of electric vehicle charging stations, and the greening of building and construction standards. Under her leadership they just achieved carbon neutral operations at the end of 2020!

She also serves on The CLEEN Project advisory board, the GBCI Board of Directors, and the GRID Alternatives Board of Directors. Previously, she served on the USGBC Advisory Council and as Chair of the Board of Directors of USGBC Los Angeles, in addition to the Board of Directors of Young Professionals in Energy Los Angeles, Advisory Council of the Los Angeles Cleantech Incubator, and the BOMA Los Angeles Sustainability Committee.

She is a frequent speaker (20+ events per year) at industry conferences and seminars on energy efficiency, tenant engagement, market transformation, and green leasing. Select speaking engagements include ENERGY STAR Partner of the Year (Keynote), C40, USGBC Greenbuild, VERGE, US Conference of Mayors, BOMA International and ACEEE. 


Show Highlights


  • Kilroy has the right market forces to make sustainability happen.
  • The reasons you need to advocate for a standalone sustainability budget. 
  • Avoid getting trapped in sustainability with these staying power tips for the industry.
  • What did Kilroy do to shock the commercial real estate world?


  1. Their impressive sustainability portfolio.
  2. Amount of influence over the whole industry, especially in something as important as carbon.
  3. The America's listed sector leader across all asset classes.


  • Getting creative about off-site renewables.
  • Sara talks all things GRESB (how green is your portfolio of CRE).
  • Green building’s responsibility towards the impact buildings have on human health and productivity.
  • Sara’s tips to make sustainability make business sense. 
  • A great tool that gives insight into the embodied carbon of construction materials and helps manage it.


“Environmental people tend to just only want to talk about sustainability. You have to speak the language of business in our field of real estate, to really be able to be successful [with your sustainability initiatives].” 

-Sara Neff


Sara Neff Transcript


Sara Neff ’s Show Resource and Information

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