Sustainable Brownfields Consortium


Our Team

John Braden, PhD

Professor of Environmental Economics, Department of Agricultural & Consumer Economics
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Dr. Braden has nearly 20 years' experience working on economic valuation studies, including analyses of property values and Census data to understand the economic impacts of contaminated areas. He has also published studies of the economic benefits of low-impact design in the context of new development (Braden and Johnston 2004; Johnston et al., 2006). Additional related articles include Braden, J.B. and D.M. Johnston. "Downstream Economic Benefits from Stormwater Management." Journal of Water Resources Planning and Management, 130 (6, 2004): 498-505; and Johnston, D.M., J.B. Braden, and T.H. Price. "The Downstream Economic Benefits of Stormwater Management: A Comparative Analysis." Journal of Water Resources Planning and Management, 132 (1, 2006): 35-43. Dr. Braden serves on the steering committee of the "Market Barriers to Green Development" initiative led by U.S. EPA Region 5.
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Christopher De Sousa, PhD

Associate Professor, Director, School of Urban and Regional Planning
Faculty of Community Services, Ryerson University, Toronto

Over the last decade, Dr. De Sousa has carried out funded research and published on various aspects of brownfields redevelopment in the US and Canada, including policymaking, public- and private-sector costs and risks, redevelopment activity for various land uses, community perceptions, and sustainability development and reporting. His book, Brownfields Redevelopment and the Quest for Sustainability, published by Elsevier Science/Emerald Group Publishing, examines the role that brownfields redevelopment is playing and can play in sustainable development, focusing primarily on efforts in the U.S. and Canada to build better places for urban dwellers to live, work, and play. From 2002 to 2011, Dr. De Sousa co-directed the Brownfields Research Consortium at UW-Milwaukee, a partnership among UWM faculty, government agencies, businesses, and nonprofit organizations involved in the cleanup and redevelopment of brownfield properties aimed at developing research projects and other activities that will reduce barriers to brownfields redevelopment.
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Serap Erdal, PhD

Associate Professor of Environmental and Occupational Health Sciences
School of Public Health
University of Illinois at Chicago

Dr. Erdal's primary research interests are environmental and occupational exposure assessment, health risk assessment, development of exposure measurement methods and techniques, multi-media exposure analysis and modeling, and aerosol science and technology. She has worked extensively with EPA Region 5. Her publications include "Characterization of work exposures to known and suspected animal neurocarcinogens using the National Occupational Health Survey", "Demolition of high-rise public housing increases particulate matter air pollution in communities of high-risk asthmatics", "Assessment of the Health Protectiveness of the Risk-Based Soil Remediation Standards of the Midwestern States", and "Multi-Pathway Risk Assessment for Adults and Children Living Near a Hazardous Waste Site."
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Daniel Hellmuth, AIA, LEED-AP

Principal and Co-Founder, Hellmuth + Bicknese Architects

In addition to his experience in sustainable design, Mr. Hellmuth has over 19 years of experience in K-12 and higher education, housing, historic preservation, and transit and transportation planning. Dan serves as Chairman of the U.S. Green Building Council-St. Louis Regional Chapter and is on the Board of Directors of the Landmarks Association. He recently taught a course in Sustainable Design at the Washington University School of Architecture and speaks regularly on various green design topics, including a National Head Start Conference on the topic of greening Head Start Child Care Centers.
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Susan Kaplan, JD

Research Assistant Professor

School of Public Health / Institute for Environmental Science and Policy
University of Illinois at Chicago

Ms. Kaplan has had 19 years of experience in environmental policy, practice and research, focusing on brownfields, sustainable development and environmental health. Her work at UIC has included developing research projects to promote sustainability in the health care sector and co-writing a report on best practices for increasing building deconstruction and building material reuse. Prior to coming to UIC, Kaplan managed the brownfields program at the Rhode Island Economic Development Corporation, where she applied for and managed Brownfields Assessment and Cleanup Revolving Loan Fund grants from U.S. EPA and conducted policy research and writing on brownfields and sustainable development issues. She also previously served as assistant director of an energy policy group at Harvard's Kennedy School of Government and developed regulations at a federal agency in Washington, D.C.
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Michael Krause, JD

Principal, Kandiyo

Michael Krause has been involved in brownfield projects in the Twin Cities for more than 10 years. He was executive director for nine years at the Green Institute, an environmentally-oriented community development corporation in Minneapolis. During that period, the organization cleaned up a brownfield site in one of the lowest-income neighborhoods in Minnesota and built the Phillips Eco-Enterprise Center, a 64,000- square-foot office and light industrial building that remains one of the greenest buildings in Minnesota. He serves on the New Markets Tax Credit program advisory committee for Cherokee Investments. Krause founded Kandiyohi Development Partners, an energy development and consulting firm, in 2005. He currently has his own consulting firm.



Joshua Linn, PhD

Fellow, Resources for the Future

Josh Linn's research centers on the effect of environmental regulation and market incentives on technology, with particular focus on the electricity sector and markets for new vehicles. His work on the electricity sector has compared the effectiveness of cap and trade and alternative policy instruments in promoting new technology, including renewable electricity technologies. Several of his studies on new vehicles markets investigate the effect of CAFE standards on new vehicle characteristics and the effect of gasoline prices on new vehicle fuel economy. Past research on the manufacturing and pharmaceuticals sectors has explored the effect on new technology of price and consumer demand incentives. Dr. Linn was previously an assistant professor in the economics department at UIC and a research scientist at MIT, where he served as executive director of the MIT Study of the Future of Solar Energy.
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Marilyn Ruiz, PhD

Clinical Assistant Professor Pathobiology
College of Veterinary Medicine
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Marilyn Ruiz's recent activities have included instruction and workshops in spatial epidemiology, methods and data for Geographic Information Systems spatial analyses related to health, and GIS for public and veterinary health. She has provided assistance to local and state departments of public health in Illinois on issues related to West Nile virus mapping and spatial analysis, and prepared a white paper for the Illinois Department of Public Health to address the question of whether West Nile virus was more likely to present near wetlands. Dr. Ruiz has also assisted the Illinois Department of Natural Resources with mapping and spatial analysis of Chronic Wasting Disease, including data organization and processing, spatial analysis, and helping to identify needs and research direction.
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Thomas Theis, PhD

Professor of Civil and Materials Engineering
Director, Institute for Environmental Science and Policy
University of Illinois at Chicago

Professor Theis' areas of expertise include the mathematical modeling and systems analysis of environmental processes, the environmental chemistry of trace organic and inorganic substances, interfacial reactions, subsurface contaminant transport, hazardous waste management, industrial pollution prevention, and industrial ecology. He has been principal or co-principal investigator on over 40 funded research projects, and has authored or co-authored over 100 papers in peer-reviewed research journals, books, and reports. He is a member of the U.S. EPA Science Advisory Board (Environmental Engineering Committee), erstwhile editor of the Journal of Environmental Engineering, and serves on the editorial boards of The Journal of Contaminant Transport, and Issues in Environmental Science and Technology. From 1980-1985 he was co-director of the Industrial Waste Elimination Research Center, one of the first Centers of Excellence established by USEPA. In 1989 he was an invited participant on the United Nations' Scientific Committee on Problems in the Environment Workshop on Groundwater Contamination. Theis is currently PI on the Environmental Manufacturing Management Program, one of the Integrated Graduate Education Research and Training grants of the National Science Foundation.
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