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The Green Building Matters Podcast with Charlie Cichetti

Nov 6, 2019

About the Episode

In this episode, we have Green Building professional Rob Fleming. The way Rob grew up has a lot to do with what he does now, and he credits his parents for that.  Rob’s mom took he and his sister to Woodstock in 1969 so a lot of his early experience was being exposed to counter culture and alternative ways and finding a better way of moving forward with sustainability.

Rob started gravitating towards sustainability and green buildings in undergrad school at Temple, and he continued this journey in grad school at Virginia Tech.


Key Talking Points 

  1. Getting to know Rob
  2. Rob’s journey into building engineering
  3. Temple and Virginia Tech
  4. Rob has always been involved in organizations
  5. Starting a Master’s of Science in Sustainable Design 
  6. Why we moved from climate change to climate adaptability
  7. Self-Awareness
  8. Routines and Rituals


Key Milestones of the Episode

[01:33]  Getting to know Rob

[02:54]  Aha moments

[04:00]  Organization value in career

[05:41]  Rob’s mentors

[09:25]  Rob’s proudest achievements

[14:00]  Teaching at Thomas Jefferson University

[19:44]  Moving from climate change to climate adaptability

[25:25]  Area of specialty 

[27:32]  Quadruple Bottom Line

[29:08]  Routines


Key Quotes from the Episode

  1. “Why use so many resources when you don’t have too?”
  2. “I have been a participant in organizations as an architect since the beginning of my career.”
  3. “One of the first things I was exposed to was materials and their effect on the planet.”
  4. “I decided to write my first book at the kitchen table.”
  5. “Incremental improvement is not going to get us to the finish line.”
  6. “We need to be able to see the world through multiple lenses simultaneously so that we can begin to make more wholistic and comprehensive decisions to serve the world better.”

Key Resources

  1. Design Education for a Sustainable Future by Rob Fleming
  2. Sustainable Design for the Built Environment by Rob Fleming and Saglinda Roberts
  3. Eco Man and the Skeptic Podcast
  4. Sustainable Design Basics-coming soon


Learn More about Rob Fleming

Rob Fleming is a design professional with over 20 years of high-level facilitation experience. He uses authentic DEI (Diversity, Equity, Inclusion) strategies to make sure that all stakeholders are valued and heard in the process. Additionally, he integrates TBL (Triple Bottom Line) also referred to as People, Profit, Planet concepts into all sessions to ensure that environmental justice is front and center in the process.

Rob’s educational work seeks to train the next generation of sustainability leaders. As Program Director for the MS in Sustainable Design Program at Jefferson, he works to transform higher education for more value and more impact. Rob is building a new platform to deliver cutting edge knowledge and concepts to a diverse audience. 



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GBES is excited our membership community is growing. Consider joining our membership community as members are given access to some of the guests on the podcasts that you can ask project questions. If you are preparing for an exam, there will be more assurance that you will pass your next exam, you will be given cliff notes if you are a member, and so much more. Go to to learn more about the 4 different levels of access to this one-of-a-kind career-advancing green building community!

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