WASHINGTON — The U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) has announced that New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg,New York Timescolumnist Thomas Friedman, medical anthropologist and physician Paul Farmer, and ABC News political commentator Cokie Roberts will address attendees at Greenbuild 2011, taking place Oct. 4-7 in Toronto.

“Each year, we strive to build a program enriched with thoughtful pairings of expert speakers with topical, relevant, and inspiring content,” said Kimberly Lewis, vice president, Conferences & Events, USGBC. “This year, as Greenbuild celebrates its 10 year anniversary and answers the question, ‘What’s Next?’, we look forward to hosting a roster of world-renowned visionaries.”

This year, Greenbuild will combine its opening plenary with a celebration event to take place the evening of Oct. 5 at Toronto’s Air Canada Center. Friedman will deliver the opening keynote and then lend his expertise to USGBC's Resiliency Agenda panel. Moderated by Roberts, the panel will discuss resiliency and how all industries can play a role in community rebuilding efforts in New Orleans, Haiti, and around the globe. Friedman and Roberts will be joined by Dr. Farmer, chair of Global Health and Social Medicine at Harvard Medical School and founder of Partners in Health

“Re-envisioned in honor of the Greenbuild 10th anniversary, this kick-off event will set the tone for the show by urging attendees to envision what’s next through connection, innovation, communication, and action,” said Lewis.

In his 2008 bestselling book, Hot, Flat, and Crowded, Friedman, a Pulitzer Prize-winning author, reporter, and columnist, explored the parallels between climate change and the global economic crisis. He is a champion for “Geo-Greenism,” a national strategy to make America healthier, richer, more innovative, more productive, and more secure.

Medical anthropologist and physician Dr. Farmer has written extensively on health, human rights, and the consequences of social inequality. His new book, Haiti: After the Earthquake, assesses what works — and what doesn’t — in helping communities recover from disaster.

Roberts, an Emmy Award-winning journalist, bestselling author, and a native of New Orleans, serves dually as senior news analyst for National Public Radio and political analyst for ABC News. An inductee into the Broadcasting and Cable Hall of Fame, Roberts has won a number of awards, and was cited as one of the 50 greatest women in the history of broadcasting.

On the final day of Greenbuild, Oct. 7, Mayor Bloomberg will deliver the closing plenary and discuss what cities around the world can do to generate real change. Bloomberg will be joined by Natalie Jeremijenko, director, NYU’s xdesign Environmental Health Clinic; John Picard, principal, John Picard & Associates; and Lisa Strausfeld, interactive information designer and entrepreneur. The closing plenary will answer what’s next in sustainability in our nation’s cities.

For more information, visit www.greenbuildexpo.org.

Publication date: 09/19/2011