2023 Design for Freedom Summit

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The 2023 Design for Freedom Summit was held on Thursday, March 30th, 2023 at Grace Farms. This second annual event gathered over 500 participants representing industry leaders in architecture, interior design, manufacturing, engineering, and construction, as well as policy makers, owners, and developers.

The Agenda

9:00 am | Registration, Breakfast, & Exhibits 

9:30 am | Music by the hummingbirds 

  • Marcus G. Miller, Grace Farms, Saxophone
  • Florian Idenburg, SO-IL, Drums
  • Liany MateoBass
  • Nick Roseboro, Architensions, Trumpet
  • Peter NelsonKeyboards

10 am | Welcome Address

  • Sharon Prince, CEO and Founder of Grace Farms

10:15 am | Accelerating The Movement | Pilot Projects

  • Sharon Prince, Grace Farms
  • Curtis Clay, U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Overseas Buildings Operations
  • Diana Kellogg, Diana Kellogg Architects
  • Jing Liu, SO-IL
  • Nina Cooke John, Studio Cooke John
  • Pete Hamill, Turner Construction

11 am | The Business Case for Design for Freedom 

  • Richard Lui, MSNBC/NBC News
  • Ana Hinojosa, Former US Customs & Border Protection and Oritain
  • Debbie Propst, MillerKnoll
  • Maha Khan, Finance Against Slavery and Trafficking, United Nations University Centre for Policy Research
  • Raphael Sperry, Arup

11:45 am | Mid-Morning Break

  • Adam Thatcher, Grace Farms Foods 

12:15 pm | Supply Chain Transparency 

  • Nora RIzzo, Grace Farms
  • Cristina Villegas, Pact
  • Jim Vallette, Material Research L3C
  • Paul J. Bradley, Lendlease Americas
  • Dr. Shawn Macdonald, Verite 

1 – 2:30 pm | Lunch & Architectural Tours 

  • Toshihiro Oki, Grace Farms 

2:30 pm | Roundtables

Building Materials and the Climate Report by Yale CEA & UNEP

  • Anna Dyson, Yale Center for Ecosystems + Architecture
  • Jim Vallette, Material Research L3C
  • Dr. Mae-ling Lokko, Willow Technologies and Yale School of Architecture 
  • Dr. Mohamed Aly Etman, Yale Center for Ecosystems + Architecture

Converting Textile Transparency to Interiors 

  • Ana Hinojosa, Former US Customers & Border Protection and Oritain
  • Buxton Midyette, Supima Cotton 
  • Gabe Wing, MillerKnoll
  • Hayes Slade, Slade Architecture
  • Rachel Berkin, Tarkett
  • Rebecca Best, Material Bank 

Global Policy as a Driver

  • Sharon Prince, Grace Farms
  • Amy O-Neill Richard, State Department’s Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons 
  • Angel Dizon, Public Buildings (Great Lakes Region)
  • Dr. Lee Schwartz, U.S. Department of State and Office of the Geographer and GLobal Issues
  • Luba Nikulina, IFM Investors and UK Task Force for Social Factors
  • Peter Swartz, Altana AI 

Material Circularity + Tech Innovation

  • Brigid Abraham, Grace Farms
  • Chris Sharples, SHoP
  • Diana Kellogg, Diana Kellogg Architects
  • Felix Heisel, Circular Construction Lab, Cornell University
  • Florian Idenburg, SO-IL 

Timber Studies

  • Rod Khattabi, Grace Farms
  • Alina Reynolds, Grace Farms
  • Ben Dreith, Dezeen
  • Dr. John Hermanson, University of WashingtonCenter for Environmental Forensic Science
  • Luciana Varkulja, uma architecture & design

Tools for Material Transparency

  • Annie Bevan, Mindful Materials
  • Barbra BatShalom, Building Ease 
  • Evelyn Ritter, Toxnot
  • James Slade, Slade Architecture
  • Monica Becker, Cradle to Cradle Products INnovation institute
  • Raphael Sperry, Arup
  • Nora Rizzo, Grace Farms 

4 pm | Inspiration & Action

  • Featuring PlatonPlaton Photo, founder of The People’s Portfolio, Peabody Award-winning photographer, storyteller, and human rights activist 
  • Joanna Hall, SustainChain
  • Kai-Uwe Bergmann, BIG 

5 pm | Cocktail Hour 

2023 Design for Freedom Summit Speakers

Panels and roundtables led by experts in fields such as architecture, law, and construction are centered around our core topics: corporate ethical responsibility, government policies, Design for Freedom Pilot Projects, and the future of the AEC industry. 

Alina Reynolds, General Counsel and Justice Initiative Deputy Director, Grace Farms Foundation 
Amy O’Neill Richard, Senior Supply Chain Advisor, State Department’s Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons 
Ana Hinojosa, Former Executive Director, US Customers & Border Protection, and Oritain 
Angel Dizon III
Government Senior Executive responsible for Public Buildings (Great Lakes Region) 
Anna Dyson
Founding Director, Yale Center for Ecosystems + Architecture 
Anne Bevan
Executive Director, Mindful Materials 
Barbra BatShalom
Founder and CEO, BuildingEase, Inc
Ben Dreith
US Editor, Dezeen 
Brigid Abraham
Design for Freedom Project Manager, Grace Farms
Buxton Midyette
VP Marketing & Promotions, Supima 
Christopher Sharples
Principal, SHoP Architects 
Cristina M. Villegas
Director of Sustainable Markets, Pact
Curtis Clay
Director of Architecture, Department of State’s Bureau of Overseas Building Operations
Debbie Propst
President, Global Retail at MillerKnoll
Diana Kellogg
Founder and Principal, Diana Kellogg Architects 
Evelyn Ritter
Senior Solutions Engineer, Toxnot 
Felix Heisel
Circular Construction Lab,
Cornell University 
Florian Idenburg
Principal, SO-IL
Gabe Wing
Vice President of Sustainability, MillerKnoll
Hayes Slade
Co-Founder, Slade Architecture
Jacqueline Corbelli
Founder and CEO, SustainChain
James Slade
Co-Founder, Slade Architecture
Jim Vallette
Co-Founder and President, Material Research LC3
Jing Liu
Principal, SO-IL
Joanna Hall
Executive Director, SustainChain
Dr. John Hermanson
Co-Executive Director, Center for Environmental Forensic Science; Research Scientist, School of Environmental and Forest Sciences at the University of Washington
Kai-Uwe Bergmann
Partner, BIG
Dr. Lee Schwartz
The Geographer, U.S. Department of State; Director, Office of the Geographer and Global Issues
Luba Nikulina
Chief Strategy Officer, FMI Investors; Chairwoman, UK Task Force for Social Factors
Luciana Varkulja
Founder and Principal, uma architecture & design
Dr. Mae-ling Lokko
Willow Technologies and Yale School of Architecture
Maha Khan
Financial Sector Lead, Finance Against Slavery and Trafficking, United Nations Center for Policy Research
Marcus G. Miller
Saxophonist, composer, and Grace Farms Music Director
Dr. Mohamed Aly Etman
Lecturer and Research Scientist, Yale Center for Ecosystems + Architecture
Monica Becker
Director, Cradle to Cradle Product Innovation Institute
Nick Roseboro
Principal, Architensions
Nina Cooke John
Founder, Studio Cooke John
Nora Rizzo
Ethical Materials Director, Grace Farms
Paul Bradley
Head of Supply Chain, Lendlease Americas
Peter Hamill
Senior Vice President and Regional General Manager, New England, Turner Construction Company
Peter Swartz
Co-Founder and Chief Science Officer, Altana AI
Founder, The People’s Portfolio; Peabody Award-winning storyteller; human rights activist
Rachel Berkin
Sustainability Product Manager, Tarkett
Raphael Sperry
Associate Principal, Arup
Rebecca Best
EVP Sustainability, Material Bank
Richard Lui
Anchor, MSNBC/NBC News; author; filmmaker
Rod Khattabi
Chief Accountability Officer and Justice Initiative Director, Grace Farms
Sharon Prince
CEO and Founder, Grace Farms
Dr. Shawn MacDonald
CEO, Verite
Tateo Nakajima
Arup Fellow, Technical Services Leader
Toshihiro Oki
Architecture Advisor, Grace Farms

2023 Design for Freedom Summit Sponsors


In-Kind Sponsors | Certified B Corporations

Promo Partners

Media Partners