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Daniele Horton Announced as 2015 LEED Fellow

San Diego, CA – 10/20/2015 – Verdani Partners announces that Daniele Horton, Founder and President, has been named a 2015 LEED Fellow by Green Business Certification Inc. (GBCI). This year’s 35 Fellows are being honored for their outstanding work as LEED Professionals and for the significance of their contributions to the green building community at large. The LEED Fellow designates the most exceptional professionals and it is the most prestigious designation awarded from GBCI.

“Daniele is a remarkable individual who has long been a leader in the green building movement,” said Rick Fedrizzi, CEO, GBCI and CEO and founding chair, U.S. Green Building Council. “Her expertise and excitement motivates all of us to continue to look ahead to what’s next and to continue the innovation that has been the hallmark of our movement. Sharing her passion, knowledge and commitment, Daniele anchors both the past and the future of our movement.“

To be selected, LEED Fellows are nominated by their peers, undergo an extensive portfolio review, must have at least 10 years of experience in the green building industry and hold a LEED AP with specialty credential, among other requirements. The evaluation process is carried out by the LEED Fellow evaluation committee.

“I am immensely honored to have been selected to the LEED Fellow Class of 2015. As a Brazilian woman, business owner, mother of two, and national advocate for greening the existing buildings stock, I belong to an underrepresented group of leaders that play a critical role in our quest for a more sustainable world. I am determined to continue to work to improve the LEED Rating System, advocating for the USGBC’s mission, and inspiring other people to work together to fight global climate change and make the world a better place.”

–Daniele Horton, Founder & President of Verdani Partners

Daniele is the founder and president of Verdani Partners, a full-service sustainability consulting firm, bringing over 18 years of experience in sustainable real estate to assist national and international commercial real estate clients as an in-house owner’s advisor to promote and implement green building practices in a cost-effective way. For almost a decade she was the Head of Sustainability for Thomas Properties Group (TPG) where she led the LEED EBOM certification of TPG’s national portfolio in house and achieved the top ranking on GRESB in the Office category in the Americas for 3 years in a row.

She is responsible for overseeing LEED certification, strategic development, and corporate sustainability initiatives for three large national and international commercial real estate portfolios totaling almost 1,200 properties and 230 million square feet. This year, two portfolios ranked in the top 5 on GRESB in the Office category and one achieved first place in the Industrial sector in the Americas. In addition to leading Verdani Partners, Daniele is an Adjunct Professor in the master’s program at University of San Diego, as well as an activist, speaker, community leader, and educator on bother the local and national level. In 2003, she became the first LEED AP in Brazil, and in 2014, she was named as one of the 10 "Most Powerful Women in Sustainability” by the gb&d magazine. Daniele is a truly an agent of change who is on a mission to change the world.

The 2015 LEED Fellows will be recognized in Washington, DC at the Greenbuild International Conference and Expo, which is being held Nov.18-20, 2015. The nomination period for the 2016 LEED Fellows class will open in January. For more information about the LEED Fellow, visit


A true agent of change doesn’t go unnoticed. In 2014, Daniele was designated as one of the 10 most powerful women in sustainability by gd&b, a fitting title for someone who has made such a visible impact on the industry. Time and again, Daniele has proven she is a pioneer for sustainability. I am honored to nominate her as LEED Fellow.

- John Zinner, LEED Fellow, Principal, Zinner Consultants

No matter what the situation, Daniele embraces both opportunities and challenges when they arise. She is always on top of the industry’s latest trends, reporting tools and technologies that can help us realize our sustainability and business goals. Her breadth of knowledge, and technical expertise of real estate and LEED certification make her an exceptional candidate to receive the designation of LEED Fellow.

- Larry Locascio , Vice President and Director of Property Management, Parkway Properties

Through her commitment, passion, and dedicated work, I have no doubt Daniele will continue to be an inspiration and leader in defining and shaping the future of green buildings.

- Norm G. Miller, PhD, Editor, Journal of Sustainable Real Estate

Daniele’s focus, influence, exceptional leadership skills and passion are refreshing. It’s no wonder she was named by gb&d as one of the top 10 most powerful women in sustainability in 2014. As a LEED Fellow, she will continue to lead, motivate and ignite positive change to green our existing building stock. - Marcus Sheffer, Partner, 7group

Her passion and drive complement her in‐depth understanding of sustainability and the LEED EB O+M rating system. Our local USGBC Chapters and USGBC California are lucky to have committed, tireless advocates such as Daniele on our side. As a LEED Fellow, Daniele will continue to raise her level of engagement educating and advocating on behalf of the green building movement.

- Douglas Kot, AIA, USGBC Faculty, LEED AP ND, BD+C, O+M

Daniele’s long history and experience with LEED and corporate sustainability has given CommonWealth a competitive edge in the commercial office arena. Whether she is consulting a property manager on which steps yield the most benefit in an energy efficiency retrofit or talking with vendors about our sustainability and LEED policies, Daniele truly knows her subject inside and out from an owners perspective.

- Kirsten Quezambra, Vice President, CommonWealth Partners

“Daniele is a force of leadership within green building movement and the USGBC in particular. She is worked tirelessly to make sure important topics, such as 98% of existing building retrofits prioritized, as well as leading the Chapter, Pacific Region, and key initiatives of USGBC. I have had the pleasure of collaborating with Daniele in multiple capacities for the past 10 years, and absolutely consider her a leader.”

-Andrea Traber, AIA, LEED Fellow, Principal, Integrated Design Services

“I can think of no one who better embodies the spirit of a LEED Fellow than Daniele Horton. She has been a force of nature in the LEED EBOM world and has introduced THOUSANDS to LEED through her tireless efforts. She is virtually synonymous with LEED in Southern California and her work and efforts have now spread around the country.

- Eric Corey Freed, LEED Fellow, Vice President, International Living Institute & Cascadia Green Building Council

“Daniele is an amazing force in our industry. She in intensely committed and indefatigable when it comes to advocating for the transformation of the built environment – especially so in the world of Existing Buildings – and she brings the invaluable (and still not prevalent) Owner’s perspective to the Green Building discussion. I think she’s a tremendous candidate for LEED Fellow.”

- Clark Brockman, AIA, LEED Fellow Principal, SERA Architects

“I had the pleasure of being introduced to Daniele in 2005. I was instantly impressed with Daniele’s deep knowledge of green building paired with her sharp professionalism. I recall a presentation Daniele gave regarding Thomas Properties Group’s portfolio-wide LEED EB initiative. She made the most convincing arguments for landlords to adopt LEED EB and had the most comprehensive case study information of any LEED EB presentation I had seen. The way she delivered the information would have convinced even the greatest skeptics that green means good business. The USGBC is fortunate to have her as one of their advocates in the community, and she is an ideal candidate for LEED Fellow.”

- Nellie Reid, LEED Fellow


The Green Business Certification Inc. (GBCI) is the premier organization independently recognizing excellence in green business industry performance and practice globally.

Established in 2008, GBCI exclusively administers project certifications and professional credentials and certificates within the framework of the U.S. Green Building Council’s Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) green building rating systems as well as the PEER standard for power systems, the WELL building standard, the Sustainable Sites Initiative (SITES®) and the GRESB benchmark, which is used by institutional investors to improve the sustainability performance of the global property sector.

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