GOVERNMENT AFFAIRS & ADVOCACY LEADERSHIP
As the co-chair for the USGBC-LA Chapter’s Advocacy Committee, Melissa is working on growing the committee and focusing on local/regional issues regarding Green Building initiatives. With the strong influence Los Angeles has on the local community as well as the country, it is imperative that Los Angeles and the surrounding areas work together with the local governments to become a leader in the green movement, by showing the world how sustainability can be done.
Scott Sachs is a senior associate in the Cerritos office of Atkinson, Andelson, Loya, Ruud & Romo. His practice focuses on complex litigation arising out of construction projects, with a concentration in resolving environmental issues. Mr. Sachs represents public entity owners, commercial developers, general contractors, and design professionals on private and public construction projects. He has negotiated with governmental and regulatory agencies regarding review of applications and permits concerning land use, and underground storage tanks for chemical manufacturing plants, gas stations, hospitals, and rail projects. In addition, Mr. Sachs is the chairperson of the American Bar Association (“ABA”) Section of Environment, Energy, and Resource’s Energy, Natural Resources Litigation Committee and prior chairperson of its Smart Growth and Green Building Committee, and Public Service Task Force. He is co-author of the Green Materials and Construction Chapter for the ALI ABA book, The Law of Green Buildings: Regulatory and Legal Issues in Design, Construction, Operations and Financing. He was nominated for the ABA National Outstanding Young Lawyer Award. Mr. Sachs began his legal career as a clerk at the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality and the Michigan Attorney General’s Natural Resources Division.
Ying Wang has been a Board Director for USGBC Los Angeles Chapter since 2009. She has much devotion and passion for the Green School Committee, Pacific Regional Council and Branch Formation. Ying is a registered architect and has been practicing architecture for nearly 30 years. She is avid about the implementation of various sustainability programs for a diverse field of educational facilities ranging from K-12 to college/university campuses.
As a leader in architectural sustainability, Ying established Okapi Architecture Inc. in 2010. Her practices not only emphasize on integrating sustainable designs, but also developing a program for management. She has created the largest energy efficient school program for Los Angeles City Unified School District. She also serves as a consultant for San Bernardino City School District. Ying carries an extensive background in architectural practice and is familiar with a diverse amount of different building structures. Most projects consist of large, complex structures coupled with multiple clients. This has allowed her to gain valuable experience in understanding program complexity, forming consensus, and comprehending new, progressive forms of technology.
In addition to the USGBC, she is also active in both the California High Performance Schools (CHPS) technical board and in the California’s Coalition for Adequate School Housing (CASH). Ying frequently provides many presentations and workshops related to architectural sustainability. Ying is a LEED accredited professional and a registered architect in the states of California and Illinois. She has received a master degree in architecture from Virginia Polytechnic Institute in Blacksburg, and a bachelor degree in Horticulture from the National Taiwan University in Taipei.
STATE ADVOCACY REPRESENTATIVE
Building on experience with the Emerging Green Builders (EGB), a committee of the U.S. Green Building Council focused on the sustainable development and education of students and young professionals, Amelia continues to thrive in this green community.
In 2003, at Greenbuild, Amelia was introduce to the EGB and was instantly inspired by the notion of a diverse group of young, energetic, motivated people getting together to pursue projects and competitions that rose awareness and creatively addressed issues of social, environmental and economic sustainability. Amelia was looking for a local EGB group in Los Angeles and upon realizing it did not yet exist she founded the EGB-LA in the beginning of 2004. Once EGB-LA was up and running, as Chairperson Amelia represented the group on the Local Leaders Committee, a nationwide network of leaders representing the ever increasing number of EGB groups in the U.S. Soon after, in 2006, Amelia applied and was elected to hold a position with the National Committee of the Emerging Green Builders and in 2007 Amelia was elected Chairperson of the National Committee. In 2008, with her two year national term coming to an end, she represented the EGB on the Chapter Steering Committee with the National USGBC. Now, after contributing her volunteer energy at the national level for the last three years, Amelia is excited to focus on local initiatives as the Co-Chair of the Government Affairs Committee.