Disaster Recovery Construction Specialist Certification Initiative - An Idea Whose Time Has Come

Disaster Recovery

The recent storms that ravaged islands in the Caribbean and a number of southern states and the wildfires that devastated large areas of California will require many thousands of construction workers to labor years in the recovery effort. These catastrophic events underscore the high priority that is needed to ensure construction personnel are equipped to deliver state-of-the art, resilient construction in the aftermath of these and future disasters.

Updated Study Guides Ensure State-of-the-Art Builder Competencies

For more than a year, the 21 members of the International Green Builder Certification Board have diligently labored to update the international standards upon which both the Green Advantage Certified Practitioner (GACP) and the Green Advantage Certified Associate (GACA) exams are based. All GACP and GACA exams now require familiarity with their respective, updated Study Guide.
The updated Study Guides contain valuable approaches, methods, and best practices that will help prepare construction personnel to bring greater value to any commercial or residential construction project – green or conventional.
As in the past, the competencies presented in the Study Guides are applicable across trades, results-oriented and compatible with multiple green building rating systems, standards and code. Some of the areas emphasized in the updates are:
Health and Safety issues that are particular to green building...

Pre-Construction Risk Assessment (PCRA) Certificate Program Gains ANSI Accreditation: A Valuable Credential for Healthcare Construction Personnel

Green Advantage and Green Path Technical Institute, a training organization, have partnered to help meet the demand for qualified healthcare facility construction workers with a two-day PCRA Certificate Program approved by highly qualified Subject Matter Experts.Green Advantage has achieved accreditation under ANSI/ASTM E2659-09 for its Pre-construction Risk Assessment (PCRA) Certificate Program. This American National Standards Institute (ANSI) accreditation is recognized nationally and internationally. The accreditation ensures that this state-of-the-art credential for healthcare construction workers meets rigorous quality standards for both the PCRA Certificate Program and Green Advantage as a credentialing organization.

It is no surprise that construction, renovation, repair and maintenance activities at healthcare facilities can potentially affect patients, staff, construction workers, and the general public. Air quality, infection control, utility requirements, noise, vibration and other hazards are all cause for concern.

But you might not be aware of the impact of these hazards. For example, healthcare associated infections (HAIs) can be contracted from stays in virtually any type of healthcare facility – hospitals, emergency care centers, surgical centers, and nursing homes. More than 200 Americans die each day from HAIs during their hospital stay. This is about twice the number of Americans...

GSA to Launch Pilot to Require Use of GACPs on Projects

GSA Recognition of GACP Certification. The General Services Administration (GSA) is searching for a project or projects to use in a pilot to determine the effectiveness of the ANSI/ISO/IEC 17024 accredited Green Advantage Certified Practitioner (GACP) on GSA projects.

Great News for Veterans! Green Advantage Certifications Approved for GI Bill® Reimbursement

Veterans Exam
Eligible Veterans can open new doors to employment in the construction industry by becoming certified as a Green Advantage Certified Practitioner (GACP) or Green Advantage Certified Associate (GACA). Reimbursement for both of these certification exams has been approved by the approved by the Veterans Administration -- Maryland State Approving Agency for Veterans Education and Training.

Curtainwall Installer Certification Pilot Underway in US and Canada

Three Examinations Required: GACP or GACA + Curtainwall Specific Written Exam + Curtainwall Specific Performance Exam. “Grounded in green” with the GACP or GACA Certification requirement, the Curtainwall Installer Certification for the US and Canada under development by Green Advantage requires passage of a written and performance exam specifically designed to test knowledge, skills and abilities related to quality curtainwall installation. Approximately 100 candidates have now taken the GACA or GACP Exam and the written portion of the Curtainwall Installer Exam.

Important New Year Message from the Chair of the Board

Dear Colleague,

As 2016 dawns, the case for high performance, healthy buildings has never been more compelling.

The urgency we saw at COP21 meetings in Paris, the Pope’s 2015 Encyclical on the environment and human ecology, the DoD’s National Security Report on climate change, the Lancet Commission’s Report on the “medical emergency” resulting from climate change all share one concept. We, everyone on the planet, must move rapidly toward sustainable human activity to assure our species has a future.

Industry Leaders Spearhead Creation of Disaster Recovery Construction Specialist Certification

Construction industry representatives during a three-day forum developed the scope, parameters and provisions for a Disaster Recovery Construction Specialist certification. Stressing the need for qualified personnel to be involved in rebuilding efforts following a disaster, the forum was convened by Green Advantage, the International Code Council (ICC), and Antioch University New England Center for Academic Innovation at the American Institute of Architects headquarters in Washington, D.C., to outline the certification. Participating stakeholders from the design and construction industry, academia, and policy applauded the initiative.

American National Standards Institute Reaccreditation

GA 1048

Green Advantage, as an organization, as well as its Green Advantage Certified Practitioner (GACP) credential were audited and reaccredited by ANSI under the international “gold standard” for certification organizations, ANSI/ISO/IEC 17024.

Curtainwall Installer Certification Development

Curtainwalls continue to gain prominence as integrated envelope solutions that are essential to creating high performance buildings. This important glazing component not only ensures optimal daylight transmittance and thermal control, it also impacts occupant health and comfort, building security, and disaster resilience. These multi-faceted benefits of curtainwalls are only possible with high quality curtainwall installation.


From estimating to close-out, RAFN projects are led by workers who are Green Advantage Certified.

Leadin' with RAFN

RAFN Company, a construction firm based in Bellevue, WA, is a pioneer in sustainable construction. They began greening their business by recycling construction waste for extra pizza money, then went on to develop practices that were incorporated into the LEED program. With about 100 people on payroll, 17 members of their supervisory staff - project managers, superintendents, and project engineers - are certified by Green Advantage. The GAzette editor recently spoke with Heather Bunn, GACA, the firm's Vice President of Business Development, and Project Manager, Ryan Meno, GACA.


RK Stewart, Chair Green Advantage Board of Directors

RK Stewart Elected Chair of
Green Advantage Board of Directors

Former president of the American Institute of Architects, RK Stewart, was elected as the new Chair of the Green Advantage Board. This excerpt from a citation presented to RK at the conclusion of his AIA presidency exemplifies the leadership he brings to Green Advantage: "A voice for principled continuity and transformational change, he [is] unafraid to engage in the shaping of public policy, and a profession ready to take on the greatest challenge of the time, climate change. Carrying sustainability's banner here and abroad, he won for architects' greater recognition of the profession's role as stewards of humanity's dreams and the healing of our home, planet Earth."

OPINION: Passing it Forward, Mentoring in the Building Industry

creative commons. org/licenses/by/2.0

"All members of the building industry...should establish mentoring programs and reach out to their education community and to parents, teachers, business leaders and decision makers to support technical/vocational curriculum that meets the needs of today's workplace and capitalizes on the skills and work experience of these industry experts."

That's one of the recommendations in "Moving Forward", a recent report by the National Institute of Building Science (NIBS) assessing U.S. building industry priorities. The report states, "the skills required by building professionals have changed drastically over the past few decades, yet the next generation of available labor does not have the necessary technical/vocational training to replace the skills of the workforce that is retiring."