Staff

Light House has a unique team of respected and knowledgeable professionals, who are passionate about helping people like you reach your sustainability goals.

Tracy Casavant

Director, Resource Innovation
tracy@lhsbc.com | 604-677-3126 Ext. 301

Tracy_LowResTracy Casavant (BASc, M.E.S.) heads up Light House’s eco-industrial planning and development services. With more than 15 years experience, including establishing and running her own consulting firm for ten years, Tracy brings a unique soft and hard skill set of training and experience, blending backgrounds in chemical engineering and environmental studies. Tracy is one of North America’s leading experts on sustainable industrial / employment lands and infrastructure development, and has been responsible for dozens of eco-industrial projects nationally and internationally. Tracy sits on the Advisory Board for Cogen Canada. She teaches the Industrial Ecology course in BCIT’s Environmental Engineering program; has previously been a sessional lecturer at SFU; and has supervised graduate students at UBC, Dalhousie, and Royal Roads. She has been invited to speak on various business, community, and sustainability topics across Canada and internationally in countries such as Korea, China, Taiwan, Mexico, and Turkey.

Joanne Sawatzky

Director, Green Building Services
joanne@lhsbc.com | 604-677-3126 Ext. 305

Joanne Sawatzky (BTech, MSc., LEED AP BD+C) has worked in the green building sector throughout her whole career. She decided on a career in architecture when she was in the seventh grade, which inspired her to pursue a Bachelor in Architecture + Building Science, and a Masters in Energy Efficient Building. As Light House’s anchor employee since 2007, and Senior Project Manager, Joanne has led many of Light House’s most challenging and innovative projects, including The Whistler Athletes Village, The Foundry, and Telus Gardens Office and Residential. She works closely with a wide range of clients—from developers to architects—on implementing green building projects, technical policy development, contractor training, and post occupancy evaluations.

Joanne has over a decade of experience working in design, construction and operation on commercial, residential, and healthcare building projects across Canada. She is the first female BuiltGreen Canada High Density Verifier and has taught contractor training through the Vancouver Regional Construction Association (VRCA). She has also taught and mentored building science students in the Architectural Science Department at Ryerson University.

When asked about her proudest accomplishments, she’ll tell you that getting a project—any project—complete, and seeing her clients get what they need, is the best feeling. To Joanne, sustainability is about making small but measurable changes that add up…and lead to better buildings and a better quality of life.

Kaitlyn Gillis

Director, Wellbeing + Sustainability
kaitlyn@lhsbc.com | 604-677-3126 Ext. 309

Kaitlyn GillisKaitlyn Gillis (BEng, EIT, MSc(Arch), MSc(Env Psyc), LEED AP, WELL AP) recently completed her Master’s of Science in Environmental Psychology, where she focused her research on the restorative impacts of Biophilic Design on indoor environments. Originally from Fredericton, New Brunswick, Kaitlyn comes to us from London UK, where she gained experience with BREEAM, LEED, and working with the newly released WELL Building Standard.

Kaitlyn is passionate about health and wellbeing in the built environment and leads Light House’s projects and educational efforts on human-centred design, healthy building materials and the WELL Building Standard.

Kaitlyn has worked with numerous clients on various projects including LEED projects, reviewing design guidelines, developing employee educational materials, and conducting WELL Building Standard Feasibility Studies. She is also an accomplished public speaker and in 2016 presented at various events including: Light House’s first inspiration Session: Nature, People & Design in April; Women in Architecture, Vancouver in March; BuildEx Express in November; and the PHABC Conference in December. Kaitlyn also participated in the Turncoats Vancouver second debate, Green Wash, in September. She is also leading Light House’s Lunch and Learns: Creating Healthy Environment for People.

Kaitlyn has recently co-published two articles: Healthy Building Syndrome with Dak Kopec in Canadian Architecture Magazine, August 2016; and Designing Interior Environments that Support Human Health with Michelle Biggar in Sustainable Architecture & Building Magazine, January 2017.

Outside of work, Kaitlyn can be found enjoying nature through various activities with her young son, River, and husband, Tom.

Veronica Owens

Project Manager
veronica@lhsbc.com | 604-677-3126 Ext. 306

Veronica Owens (BA, MMC Cert., SMaRT AP, LEED AP O+M) wants to create a more equitable world through green building. “Sustainability is the future,” says Veronica, “that’s where the huge opportunities are.” At Light House, Veronica works through all stages of the green building certification process with her clients, contributes to research and policy work, and leads education and outreach efforts.

Veronica has managed numerous multi-year LEED CS, NC, CI, Homes Mid-Rise, and EBOM projects—for commercial offices, university buildings healthcare facilities, condos, and mixed use buildings—enjoys delivering tailored green building training for sub-contractors, suppliers, facility managers, architects and interior designers. Veronica has been a guest speaker for Cool North Shore, UBC’s Arts Career Xploration, UBC’s Sustainable Building Science Program (SBSP), and a guest judge at BCIT’s Presentation IDOL 2015.

Veronica is a lifelong learner, and it shows – she takes pride in exceeding client expectations, inspiring [link to Partnerships Showcase] students and community members, and transforming buildings and neighbourhoods into welcoming and sustainable places to live and work. Veronica values collaboration, a diverse and challenging project portfolio, and the freedom to share ideas openly with colleagues and clients. Veronica is the co-chair of the BC Sustainable Energy Association (BCSEA) Vancouver Chapter, sits on the AMP events committee, and is an active member of the Viking Sailing Club and Vancouver Area Racing Circuit (VARC).

Rosa Catacora

Green Building Coordinator
rosa@lhsbc.com | 604-677-3126 Ext. 308

A trained architect, Rosa Catacora (B.Arch, M.Sc. Renewable Energy, LEED AP Homes) fell in love with Vancouver and was inspired by the enthusiasm of the Light House team – so much so that, a few months later, Rosa found herself moving to BC, and taking up a staff position at Light House.

Rosa’s resume includes running her own business in Peru, Quatro Palos, which focused on solar integration, architecture, interiors, and graphic design. She managed commercial design projects in Spain and implemented sustainable recycling, energy efficiency and water conservation initiatives for one of Europe’s largest insurance companies. After she discovered her passion for sustainability, she began working for a renewable energy company in Spain, designing solar fields.

Rosa holds a Bachelor’s degree in Architecture from Universidad Peruana de Ciencias Aplicadas (Peruvian University of Applied Sciences) and a Master’s degree in Renewable Energy from Universidad Europea (European University of Madrid).

“Buildings can consume a lot of energy, water, and generate a lot of waste,” she says, “so green building projects really are key to a sustainable future.”

Bianca Cowen

Financial Controller / Operations Manager
accounting@lhsbc.com | 604-677-3126 Ext. 302

Bianca HeadshotBianca Cowan (BA, CPA, CA) has always had a passion for numbers. After graduation from the University of Victoria, she went on to pursue her CPA. Accounting bridges her passion for numbers with her passion for helping companies achieve their financial goals.

When Bianca isn’t spending her time with her husband and daughter, she can be found in the garden. She says, “A harvest of garden fresh vegetables is one of the best things about summer.”

 

Luke Smeaton

Executive Director (On Leave)
luke@lhsbc.com | 604-677-3126 Ext. 303

For Luke Smeaton (BBSc., CEM, LEED AP O+M, GGP), green building is all about problem solving. Luke is a building science expert with over ten years of international experience covering integrated building design, energy efficiency, low-carbon design, and digital building performance analysis. He sees sustainability as being about finding opportunities to positively impact society within the built environment, rather than about restrictions or barriers.

Having worked in New Zealand, the UK, and Australia before coming to Canada, Luke applies best practices from around the globe—including water efficiency strategies from drought-stricken Australia and innovative European approaches to energy efficiency and renewables—to find ways to improve design, construction, and long-term building operation. He brings to his projects the benefits of having worked with world-class designers and a variety of green building and energy rating systems, including LEED, ENERGY STAR Portfolio Manager, BOMA BESt, BREEAM (UK), and Green Star (Australia).

Luke also strongly values collaboration, both between team members and across industry. “The world of buildings can include a lot of different people working in silos,” he says, “but when those people are able to come together to see the bigger picture, they can reveal huge opportunities.”

Luke currently sits on the steering committee for the Cascadia Green Building Council’s Metro Vancouver Branch, and is an active Living Building Challenge Ambassador. Luke’s professional memberships include the Association of Energy Engineers, the International Living Future Institute, and the International Building Performance Simulation Association.

Our Accreditations

If you don’t recognize some of the acronyms above, don’t worry – you’re not alone. Here’s a quick run-through of our team’s building-related accreditations.

LEED AP – the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Accredited Professional (AP) credential demonstrates advanced knowledge in green building practices and specialization in a particular LEED Rating System – such as New Construction (NC), Commercial Interiors (CI), Operations + Maintenance (O + M), Homes and others [http://www.usgbc.org/credentials].

Light House staff with LEED accreditations includes:

Luke Smeaton, Executive Director
Joanne Sawatzky, Director, Green Building Services
Veronica Owens, Project Manager
Kaitlyn Gillis, Director, Wellbeing + Sustainability
Rosa Catacora, Green Building Coordinator

WELL AP – The WELL AP credential is awarded to individuals who demonstrate in-depth knowledge of how the built environment can impact human health and wellbeing. The AP is based off of the WELL Building Standard®, released in 2014 by the International WELL Building Institute, which is the first building rating system to date that focuses solely on human health and wellbeing. Light House staff member Kaitlyn Gillis has this accreditation.

CEM – the Certified Energy Manager (CEM) credential recognizes individuals who have demonstrated high levels of experience, competence, proficiency, and ethical fitness in the energy management profession. Executive Director Luke Smeaton has the CEM credential.

BBSc. – the Bachelor of Building Science is an undergraduate degree that provides a thorough grounding in the science and technology of buildings, structures and an understanding of architecture. Executive Director Luke Smeaton earned this degree from the Victoria University of Wellington’s School of Architecture.

GGP – the Green Globes Professional (GGP) accreditation recognizes those trained specifically in the Green Globes building assessment and certification process, who have experience in the design and construction phases of green buildings in the commercial, educational, industrial or healthcare sectors. Executive Director Luke Smeaton has the GGP accreditation.

MES – the Master of Environmental Studies is an interdisciplinary graduate degree that focuses on resources, environment, and human wellbeing and the environment. Director of Resource Innovation Tracy Casavant has an MES from Dalhousie University.