UMA Architecture Program Hosts Virtual Panel Discussion on Earth Day

UMA Architecture Program to host a virtual panel discussion on Passive House Strategies in recognition of Earth Day
April 22, 2021 at 11:00 a.m. EDT/8:00 a.m. PDT

University of Maine at Augusta (UMA) Architecture Program is hosting a virtual panel discussion via Zoom with passive house architects from the northeast and northwest United States. The panel will take place on April 22, 2021 at 11:00 a.m. EDT/8:00 a.m. PDT and coincides with the 51st Earth Day.

The presenting panelists are Stephen Aiguier of Green Hammer, Oregon, Chris Briley of Briburn, Maine, Tad Everhart of CertiPHIers, Oregon, and Matt O’Malia of OPAL, Maine. Amy Hinkley, an architecture faculty member at UMA, will moderate the discussion.

The event is open to the public, however registration is required.  To register go to or for more information, please contact Emily Pettengill at or 207-621-3582.

“Given the current state of our global environment, it is essential that the architecture profession address issues of sustainability in the design and construction of both new and existing buildings. Passive House buildings are designed and constructed to be highly energy-efficient,” says Architecture Program Coordinator Eric Stark. “These buildings can reduce temperature fluctuations, improve indoor air quality, and make a space more enjoyable to live and work in. Passive House strategies can also reduce energy use by up to 90% and reduce environmental impacts such as greenhouse gas emissions. It is incumbent that architecture schools teach their students to think and act in ways that benefit our planet in the long term. Understanding the principles and strategies employed in Passive House design should be a significant part of that education.”

About the panelists:

Tad Everhart is a PHI-accredited building Certifier and co-founder of CertiPHIers Cooperative. Tad and his brother Garth Everhart developed and built over 40 homes in Portland, Oregon before EnerPHitting Tad’s family’s home starting in 2009 to be 100% renewable electric powered by 2016.  CertiPHIers Cooperative members certify offices, high-rise and low-rise multifamily, mixed-use, and institutional buildings throughout North America.

Stephen Aiguier is a pioneer of Oregon’s green building movement. Stephen founded Green Hammer in 2002 and has grown the company into a full-service design-build firm known for its commitment to excellence in environmental design and performance. He is a dedicated educator, business leader, and father who has committed much of his life to proving that healthy, carbon-free buildings are the best choice — for a healthy planet, healthy people and a healthy bottom line.

The executive partner and founder of OPAL, Matthew O’Malia is an award-winning architect with a nationwide reputation for innovation and expertise in the design of high-performance buildings. A leader in Passive House design in North America and named to Architect magazine’s Architect 50 list in 2018, he is a frequent speaker at sustainable design conferences in the U.S. and abroad.

Chris Briley is a principal architect at Briburn where he practices “architecture for life” specializing in sustainable design. He is a Certified Passive House Consultant.  He is also co-host of the Green Architects’ Lounge podcast, an enthusiastic participant of the Building Science Discussion Group in Portland, and a founding board member of PassivhausMAINE.

About the moderator:

Amy Hinkley is a faculty member in the UMA Architecture, teaching courses on Building Science, Construction Tectonics, and Design Research. A practicing architect, Amy’s professional work evidences a commitment to sustainable construction methodologies and building systems, as well as larger issues of landscape, site and community. Issues of environmental and ecological sensitivity are deeply grounded in both her design and teaching ethic.