Members

Mia Campbell | Co-President, Solar Decathlon Project Manager

B.A. Architecture, Minors in Global Poverty and Practice, French

The built environment has always been an important part of Mia’s life, as both an inspiration and as something she has wanted to improve upon. She is particularly interested in the intersection of architecture with justice and sustainability, and she hopes to explore these topics even further in upcoming SHAC projects! In her free time she enjoys playing rugby, drawing, and spending time outdoors.

Garrett Pohlman | Co-President, THIMBY Project Manager

B.S. Chemical Engineering

Garrett has long been fascinated by the factors that drive the development of new technologies, and the challenges that have been produced in their wake. He sees himself as part of a generation of engineers that will also strive to assess the environmental and social impact of their design decisions. In the years to come, Garrett aspires to work on the scale-up of long-lasting renewable energy and storage solutions. He hopes to incorporate his skills from research in electrochemical desalination and biofuels to help develop sustainable energy and water solutions for SHAC’s projects.

Alec Zhou | Co-Vice President, Solar Decathlon Project Manager

M.S. Electrical Engineering and Computer Science

Too often, Alec is asked “What do computer science and math have to do with sustainable building?” His answer is EVERYTHING!!! From computational design, building control, IoT devices and sensors to the socio-technological production of space, data and algorithms now pervade all environments, built or not. Alec hopes to synthesize an eclectic approach to sustainability that simultaneously rests on rigorous theoretical foundations and ruptures the dominant modes of thinking and doing. In his free time, he reads old, white philosophers.

Jessica Chen | Co-Vice President, THIMBY Project Manager

B.A. Sustainable Environmental Design, B.A. Latin

Originally from Boston, MA, Jess came to Berkeley to delve deeper into her passions surrounding sustainability in the built environment. Inspired by the urgency of the climate crisis, Jess has devoted her efforts to seeking ways to both educate about and remediate our environmental impact. Currently, she conducts research surrounding energy consumption and predicting carbon sequestered by tree planting on marginal land. In her free time, Jess loves hiking, running, and knitting fun projects.

Adeline Leung | Solar Decathlon Member

B.A. Architecture, Minor in Structural Engineering

Growing up in Hong Kong, a dense, urban city with lots of public transportation, then moving to California, a spacious area with a lot of green space has allowed Adeline to experience two sides of the spectrum. That change in environment has shaped her interest in sustainability in many aspects: from the built environment to food to environmental justice, She is excited to be part of SHAC to delve further into these interests. In her free time she enjoys hiking, trying new foods, and dancing.

John Sita | Solar Decathlon Member

B.A. Architecture, Minors in Landscape Architecture, History

At an early age, John was exposed to the environmental challenges facing the modern world, specifically in regard to sustainability and the need for technological innovation. Using his interest in the built environment, he has decided to pursue a career that creates solutions for these challenges. SHAC is one of the ways he can engage in modern sustainable housing solutions, and he is excited to advance our understanding of the built environment in our upcoming projects! In his free time, he likes to swim, play guitar, and watch sports.

Sage Quinn | Solar Decathlon Member

B.S. Energy Engineering, Minor in Data Science

If it were up to Sage, we would all live in caves in the forest, surviving purely off the land and our own creativity, but humans are a couple thousand years past that. However, developing solutions to integrate the natural world and sustainable living into the built environment is just as exciting and significantly more realistic, progressive, and challenging, and she is eager to explore these solutions both with SHAC and her future career. In addition to cave-dwelling, she also enjoys skiing, biking, surfing, camping, and rocks.

Hanna Ostapchuk | Solar Decathlon Member

B.S. Business Administration

After a half-decade of first-hand experience working in the service and hospitality industries, from a 5-star hotel, fine dining restaurants to fast-food chains, and local coffee shops, Hanna has witnessed the unnecessary overconsumption and environmental injustice that happen in the workplace. She believes that the overconsumption of products and the lack of social responsibility endanger our community and our environment. As the Internal Affairs Event Coordinator of SHAC, she is excited to contribute a positive impact towards a sustainable future.

Patricia Kusumah | Solar Decathlon Member

B.A. Architecture, Minors in City & Regional Planning and Sustainable Design

After interning to work on low-cost housing development in her hometown, Jakarta, for low-income households that are impacted by the rapid urbanization and directly experiencing the consequences of climate change through frequent flooding and sinking of my hometown, Patricia aims to use architecture and design to address contemporary issues relating to climate change and urbanism. Thus, she’s really excited to explore her interests and contribute my effort through future SHAC projects! 

Yuming Xu | Solar Decathlon Member

M.S. Building Science 

Yuming is a Masters student in the Building Science, Technology, and Sustainability program at UC Berkeley Department of Architecture. He is received my B.S. in Civil Engineering at UC Davis in 2019. He has one year research experience while he was working as an undergraduate student research assistant at the Western Cooling Efficiency Center on controls-based integration of Variable Refrigerant Flow (VRF) and Indirect Evaporative Cooling (IEC) as well as cost-optimized commercial zero net energy building modeling. His interests focus on developing advanced integrated HVAC systems to improve thermal comfort and energy performance in buildings.

Zhirong Lin | Solar Decathlon Member

M.S. Building Science 

Zhirong is a lighting designer with Stantec and a Masters student in the Building Science and Technology program. As a lighting designer, she has collaborated with different principals in the field to achieve the client’s goals, both in functionality and creativity. In addition, she also expanded her skills in daylighting analysis from LEED- and WELL-standard experience on projects. With her graduate program, she has cultivated her interest in incorporating VR/AR technology in the design process to improve the overall design quality with its strength in an immersive environment. 

Hanna Li | Director of Media, Solar Decathlon Member

B.A. Architecture

Coming to the vibrant, dynamic city of Berkeley from the quiet suburban bubble Hanna grew up in, opened her eyes to social and environmental injustices that are too often overlooked by a vast majority valuing comfort and convenience over ethics and sustainability. Having had the opportunity to witness vernacular and contemporary approaches to the built environment while traveling, Hanna aims to employ architectural design and engineering principles to address our rapidly changing built and natural environments. When she’s not geeking out over houses, Hanna enjoys hiking, making music, creating my own Chopped cooking challenges, and watching wildlife.

Rudi Skowronski | Solar Decathlon Member

B.A. Architecture, Minor in City Planning

From a young age, Rudi has known his ultimate goal in life is to help humanity transition from mass consumption of carbon based energy sources to renewable and equitable growth. He believes architecture has great potential to advance environmental sustainability, social justice, and quality of life. After graduation, Rudi hopes to engage in site-specific design work that responds to cultural, historical, environmental, and social attributes. While not working Rudi enjoys doing art, rowing, backpacking, and playing music.

Ruiji Sun | Solar Decathlon Member

Ph.D Building Science, Technology, and Sustainability

Ruiji is a PhD student in the Building Science, Technology, and Sustainability program at UC Berkeley. He has previously worked as a sustainable architect, HVAC engineer, and BIM data scientist. Since completing his undergraduate degrees, he has founded a furniture startup, which strengthened his belief in improving people’s life qualities by design, technology, and collaboration on interdisciplinary research.

He received a Bachelor of Engineering and a Second Bachelor in Architecture from Xi’an University of Architecture and Technology. He then pursued a Master of Science degree at Carnegie Mellon University, focusing on Building Information Modeling (BIM) and Building Energy Modeling (BEM). In his master thesis, funded by ASHRAE Research Project 1810, he redefined the data mapping rules of gbXML schema in HVAC systems, thus improving the gbXML’s interoperability between BIM to BEM.

His current research focuses on improving personalized thermal comfort and indoor air quality through energy-efficient HVAC systems with advanced predictive control algorithms using BRICK schema.

Yunqi "Eva" Wei | Solar Decathlon Member

M.Arch Architecture

Eva is an architectural designer who persistently explores the possibility to apply her training to the challenges facing society. Before coming to Berkeley, she was leading a renovation project in China, aimed at reactivating public space by adaptive reusing the abandoned garbage house in the community. She is also passionate about the interdisciplinary field between architecture and technology. While pursuing her March degree, she is studying a graduate certificate of data science at the same time, harboring the ambition to seize the initiative on data and technology which can potentially help design response to the social issues and this changing world.

Yuming Xu | Solar Decathlon Member

M.S. Building Science, Technology, and Sustainability

Yuming is a graduate student researcher at CBE and has been working on the California Energy Product Evaluation Hub project to evaluate advanced thermostats’ performance and usability. He is passionate about evaluating advanced integrated HVAC systems and using building energy simulation and smart building technologies to improve both energy performance of buildings and indoor environment quality.

Amit Cohen | Director of Outreach, Solar Decathlon Member

B.A. Urban Studies, Statistics

Growing up in St. Louis, MO, Amit saw how outdated and ineffective urban planning measures can divide a city, but how more informed policies help areas flourish. Since coming to Berkeley, he has investigated how urban planning techniques can be leveraged to overcome structural issues and inequalities in the urban environment. He is excited to join SHAC to learn more about how to mesh policy with architectural and engineering design to have a positive impact. He also enjoys playing spikeball and soccer, hiking, and attempting to cook new foods.

Bryan Huang | Solar Decathlon Member

B.A. Architecture

Long interested in modular and sustainable design, Bryan hopes to be part of the solution in the on-going battle against climate change and the housing crisis. As well, he hopes to incorporate his passion in graphic design and illustration to make every project and the world a more beautiful place. Outside of architecture you can find him either doodling or in the gym.

Xiaodan "April" Zhang | Solar Decathlon Member

B.A. Sustainable Environmental Design, B.A. Data Science, Minor in City Planning

Growing up in inland China, April has witnessed the environmental impacts of unsustainable buildings. She has also been doing volunteer work in Haiti and developed a strong desire to help people in poverty through building design and city planning. By taking related classes and participating in Solar Decathlon, she wishes to educate and raise awareness in her home country about energy efficiency and sustainability, as well as gaining experience for possible future projects to help Haiti and many similar places around the globe build sustainable, affordable, and resilient homes.

Gene Lee | Solar Decathlon Member

B.A. Architecture

Coming from Hong Kong, Gene notices the seriousness of homelessness in the United States. Projects by SHAC discuss aspects like affordability and sustainability in architecture and “make things happen”, unlike the over-emphasis of the importance of theories in some architecture studio courses. Gene loves charcoal drawing, hiking, and photography. He has a strong passion for visual art as well.

Verónica Saldarriaga | Solar Decathlon Member

B.A. Sustainable Environmental Design

Growing up in Costa Rica, Verónica has always had a passion for the environment. For maintaining what we have and adjusting to our environment instead of having our environment adjust to us. As a self-proclaimed nature and outdoors person, Veronica hopes to combine her love for the earth and design to bring sustainable housing to California and beyond. In addition to joining SHAC, Verónica loves everything that involves being active, including running, biking, and hiking.

Nolan Force | Solar Decathlon Member

B.A. Sustainable Environmental Design

Nolan grew up always living in and around nature, and it has always held a special place in his heart. Once he became exposed to the real consequences of human activity with regard to our planet, he knew he had to dedicate himself to trying to fix it. Cities are the centers of human life, and he thinks that creating cities that are in harmony with nature, as well as changing humanity’s mind about how we can live our lives, are how we will save the planet. He hopes SHAC will be the vital first stepping stone in his personal journey to fight climate change and help him fine tune his passion for the environment so that he can make a real difference. When he has free time, Nolan loves climbing trees, backpacking, playing and watching all kinds of sports, and eating food.

Abdoul Aziz Sandotin Coulibaly | THIMBY Member

M.S. Structural Engineering, Mechanics, and Materials

Abdoul Aziz was often left at home in front of the TV to watch the “Megastructures” series on the National Geographic Channel. From the Burj Al Arab in Dubai, to the Millau Viaduct in France; episode after episode, Abdoul Aziz’s curiosity about these structures grew. Looking back now, those episodes were the beginning of his long-standing passion for structural engineering. 

As a Masters student with interest in structural health monitoring, affordable and effective infrastructure, and structural reliability, one side of his endeavors revolves around how African countries can incorporate shipping container architecture and design into local architecture. He believes his involvement in SHAC means taking a step closer to building educational infrastructure, houses for people, and residential halls accessible to African college students in a high throughput, reliable, and affordable way.

Yelena Sukhanov | THIMBY Member

B.S. Mechanical Engineering

Yelena is passionate about engineering low-cost, high-impact solutions that improve the lives of others. She has professional work experience in product development, quality control, and the creative arts.

John Cadiz | THIMBY Member

B.S. Civil & Environmental Engineering

John’s passion is to create a positive legacy that promotes sustainability within cities, businesses and the environment. This is shown through his enthusiasm of wanting to create an environment that is sustainable, beneficial, and safe to human and economic growth. John’s main purpose in pursuing a degree in civil engineering is to provide a voice and an outlet for communities and businesses to actively shape their own future and to create effective  communication which can transcend beyond socioeconomic status and language barriers. Through SHAC, John hopes to promote forward-thinking visions and increase sustainability awareness and access

Victoria Ng | THIMBY Member

B.S. Environmental Economics and Policy, B.A. Sustainable Environmental Design

Since coming to Berkeley, Victoria has had a chance to explore and expand her interest in environmental justice and sustainability. She shares a passion for the built environment with her family, and hopes to make meaningful contributions to solving the affordable housing crisis and moving the environmental justice movement forward. She’s excited to work with THIMBY to create a more just, sustainable world, one tiny house at a time. In addition to fighting climate change, she enjoys coffee, painting, and playing badminton.

Mason Heimburger | THIMBY Member

B.A. Architecture

Originally from the mountains of Utah, Mason has always had a deep passion for sustainability and the natural world. When it comes to architecture and design, he hopes to break boundaries between the built and natural world to create better connections between people and the outdoors. He sees architecture as an opportunity to create unique spaces that serve its communities personally and build a more sustainable tomorrow. Now living in the Bay Area, he feels an immediate call to address the homeless population and struggling communities with innovative and purposeful solutions. In addition to serving those around him, he loves getting lost in the mountains, skiing, videography, and laughing!

Victoria Bartoszewicz | THIMBY Member

B.A. Sustainable Environmental Design, B.S. Conservation and Resource Studies

Originally from Chicago, Victoria has always gravitated towards the environmental
design initiatives Cal offers. Believing in the power of design and education, she
facilitates DeCals on sustainable urbanism and sustainable solutions, and is an intern with the group, Building Sustainability @ Cal. Some of her favorite things include the SF
MoMA green wall, small cobblestone streets, and music in different languages.

Eunice Hanaya Gaper | THIMBY Member

B.S. Civil Engineering

Through her experiences of growing up in humble backgrounds and living in rural Hawai’i, Eunice has grown innately passionate for being a creator and helper to others. Having recognized the basic necessity of shelter and the ever-increasing importance of implementing sustainable practices in our lives, she aspires to be of service to the community by building sustainable homes. Eunice is ever so eager to learn all the knowledge and skills she can obtain from SHAC and the THIMBY project, and ultimately being a part of the positive impact the team can make in our community.

Karla Venegas | THIMBY Building Materials & Construction Lead

B.A. Architecture, Minor in Sustainable Design

Upon coming to Berkeley, Karla witnessed the injustice that results from inefficient building designs. As a student in Architecture, she holds a moral obligation to design a better future. In her perfect world, all the buildings would be net-zero energy buildings, and although this goal is still far from reach, she hopes to contribute to this quickly developing movement of designing a sustainable and equitable society. She could not be more excited to join SHAC, as it is a stepping stone towards this goal! When she is not contemplating the future of our built environment, she enjoys playing soccer and taking her dog on long walks.

Victor Tze | THIMBY Member

B.A. Architecture, Minors in Sustainable Design, Environmental Design and Urbanism in Developing Countries, and Food Systems

Victor is a second-year architecture major from San Francisco passionate about reversing the climate crisis and environmental injustices through regenerative environmental design. He cares deeply about interdisciplinary collaboration across art, science, technology, and engineering in producing net-positive design solutions for people and the planet, and is particularly excited by the promising potentials of biodesign and urban agriculture in creating greener, happier, and healthier built environments. He loves playing the viola, learning languages, traveling, cooking, and doing yoga!

Sierra Kirkpatrick | Director of Internal Affairs, THIMBY Policy Lead

B.A. Sustainable Environmental Design, B.S. Molecular Environmental Biology

Growing up in the Bay Area, Sierra has always been fascinated with the intersection between social issues and the built environment. Here at Cal, she has been able to find people who are just as passionate about the environment, human-centered design, and social activism as she is. Sierra’s main area of focus is on post-disaster redevelopment and resilient cities, an increasing important field of study in today’s world. And SHAC’s mission ties in well, as sustainable housing is a crucial part of how we will “build back better.”

Qingyi "Annie" Xuan | THIMBY Member

B.A. Architecture

A single style no longer bounds architects; Instead, they can create novel solutions to current social and environmental issues. Annie is looking forward to become an architect who is sensible, not only looking for efficiency but also understanding the purpose of the building and the “ambiance” it needs for the people who rely on it. Upon coming to Berkeley, Annie aspires to use her interest in architecture as a medium for continuing to challenge inequality and continuing to challenge her own perceptions of my community. Becoming a member in SHAC and THIMBY project, Annie hopes to equip herself with a strong foundation in architecture and create innovative building designs for society.

Victoria Ye | THIMBY Member

B.A. Urban Studies, B.A. Economics

Under the impact of globalization, constant moving experience with her family has allowed Victoria to see various forms of cities. At an early age, Victoria was exposed to all kinds of urban issues concerning air pollution, high crime rate, overcrowded and unaffordable housing, and racial injustice in both China and the US. With strong interests in building better cities and a passion for a more sustainable global future, she decided to study Urban Studies and Economics and dedicate her potentials and skills to make city planning and urban economic development more applicable and accessible to all populations and regions.

Grace Huang | THIMBY Member

B.S. Environmental Economics and Policy, B.A. Rhetoric, Minor in Public Policy

Coming from the rural suburbs of the woods of Connecticut, Grace is very new to cities and the issues of urban density. However, she is confident that public policy solutions involving renewable energy will lead to the clean and equitable future of housing. She hopes to work on issues at the intersection of environmental and housing policy. She likes bees and kazoos but nothing else that buzzes.

Echo Allen | THIMBY Member

B.A. Architecture

In order to disrupt inequity, we must disrupt the institutions that perpetuate it. Spaces, both physical and social, can determine the strength of the communities they host. Echo is excited to learn how to create new community spaces and repair established ones. Echo’s lived experience is heavily influenced by the urban environment of Chicago as well as the undesigned landscape of the backcountry. She is thrilled to learn, work, and explore with the amazing people of SHAC.

Emily Que | THIMBY Member

B.A. Architecture, Minor in Sustainable Design

Living in the Bay Area since she was little, Emily has witnessed the continuous rise of housing costs. The difficulties to continue to afford living in the Bay Area pushes sustainability out of the question for many homeowners. However, Emily believe this doesn’t have to be the case. She is fascinated by tiny homes and their ability to provide both an affordable and sustainable way of living that is often lost in these traditional 9AM-5PM jobs. She wants to make this option much more feasible for future generations to live both economically and sustainably conscious. She is incredibly excited to be part of such an amazing team that shares the same passion for sustainability and hope to make tiny homes a more convenient and affordable option for all.

Rapha Felipe| THIMBY Member

B.A. Architecture, Minors in City Planning and Sustainable Design

Growing up in metro Manila, Rapha was exposed on a daily basis to the social and environmental issues that stemmed from the city region’s poor urban planning, building designs, and economic policies. From the polluted rivers, dilapidated shanty neighborhoods, to the long hours spent in congested traffic, Rapha knew that she had an obligation as a future architect to work in sustainable design. It is through SHAC as a member of the THIMBY team that Rapha aims to start this journey even as a student by helping design affordable and sustainable living spaces for underprivileged people. In her free time, Rapha works as a freelance illustrator and does projects predominantly related to the environment, wildlife, and Filipino culture.