Board of Directors

2023 FGBC

Bill Kachman

Ralph Locke

Kyle Abney
Immediate Past President



The Florida Green Building Coalition (FGBC) Board of Directors is the governing body responsible for supervision, control, and direction of the organization’s mission, goals, and objectives.

Members are selected for the board because of their deep expertise and broad experience in business and market development, organizational strategy and innovation, nonprofit governance, sustainability, and the built environment.

FGBC has a 25-member board that includes elected and appointed positions based on occupational categories and an “at large” category. The board of directors bring diverse leadership, experience, and insights to advance FGBC’s mission.

Four senior officers, a President, President-Elect, Treasurer, and Immediate Past President are members of the board.



At Large: Anyone with a personal or professional interest in green building
Academic & Research: Schools, Colleges, Universities; Research organizations; Educators (e.g. teachers, science museum personnel)
Design & AnalysisArchitects, energy raters, engineers, FGBC Certifying Agents, interior designers, landscape architects, private planners; consultants
Development & Construction: Builders, developers, subcontractors
Governmental: Local, state, or federal agency or its employees; County extension agents; Municipality utility representatives
Products: Distributors, manufacturers and manufacturer associations, Retailers; Recyclers and waste reduction specialists; Utility representatives
Real Estate, Finance & Property ServicesBankers, real estate attorneys, mortgage brokers, Realtors, Appraisers, energy managers, home inspectors, insurance representatives, warranty services, and maintenance services
Public Advocate: Environmental groups, full-time students, media specialists and private citizens not otherwise employed


William E. Kachman, President

Retired Major, US Army, DeLand, FL

Bill Kachman is a retired Army Major of Field Artillery. He worked for 12 years in the education field as a teacher, served as a registered lobbyist for Correctional Education, and as a distance education developer for Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University. In 2004 he joined Environmental Construction & Consulting in Deland and got involved with green building. For the next nine years, he helped manage the construction and consulting side of the company, working with builders, local governments and communities to further green building practices in Volusia and Lake counties. Bill says that in his retirement years, he is working to help FGBC grow in Florida and become the preeminent green organization in Florida.

Ralph Locke, GBC, DD, LEED AP, President-Elect

EC&CI, Deland, FL

Ralph Locke is president of Environmental Construction and Consulting Inc. He is a Florida Native and Military Combat Veteran. Ralph has over 30+ years of experience as a building professional and is one of the early pioneers in the green building field. Ralph has been a member of FGBC since 2003, Vice President in 2013, He is an FGBC Certifying Agent working with multiple Florida Builders & Developers and a Regional Liaison for FGBC. He also is the chair of the education committee and actively participates on many of the other FGBC committees. In his everyday interactions, Ralph encourages change to sustainable building practices through verbal & hands on education. He works with many organizations, including home building associations, contractors, developers, local governments, homeowners, and even high school students to promote green building practices. Ralph also volunteers as a subject matter expert for state contractor testing. Ralph holds The following licences, State Certified building, Certified roofing, Certified solar contractor, and Certified Home inspector licenses and is a Florida Water Star Commercial and Residential certifier. Ralph is an active leader and facilitator in the green building field and continues to further encourage sustainable building and to represent these interests for the FGBC.

Kyle M. Abney, Immediate Past President
Abney + Abney Green Solutions, Palm City, FL
Board Category: Design & Analysis
Abney + Abney Green Solutions is not your average green building consulting firm. After more than a decade of hands- on involvement in the field of sustainable design and construction in Florida, the AbneyGreen team has fashioned an enviable track record of successful projects, whether commercial or residential.

The firm’s principal, Kyle Abney, is one of the most highly respected “built-environment” experts in the southeast, having been chosen by myriad of owners, developers, architects and contractors to provide guidance in all aspects of the green building process. A long list of satisfied customers and referrals are evidence that the firm delivers peace of mind and reliability. Headquartered in the Treasure Coast, the firm has completed award-winning green certified projects throughout Florida.

James E. Barnes, Assistant Village Manager
Village of Wellington, Wellington, FL
Board Category: Governmental

Jim Barnes is Assistant Village Manager for the Village of Wellington, Florida. Barnes joined the Village in 2003 and previously served in several posts including, Director of Operations, Deputy Director of Operations, Parks & Recreation Director, Deputy Director of Environmental & Engineering Services, and Assistant Director of Community Services. Barnes is certified by the American Institute of Certified Planners with an advanced specialty certification in Environmental Planning and is a Certified Parks Recreation Professional by the National Recreation & Park Association. Additionally, he is a Credentialed Manager by the International City/County Management Association. Barnes leads many of Wellington’s sustainability efforts in its operations and projects having completed and occupied a LEED Gold Municipal Complex and achieving Gold Certified Green Local Government status from the Florida Green Building Coalition.

Mike Bonts
Mike Bonts Public Relations (MBPR Group), Jacksonville, FL
Board Category: Public Advocate

Mike Bonts specializes in public relations, brand development and marketing communications to include media relations, special events and social media. Strategic counsel and planning is offered to companies and individuals to increase visibility, create brand awareness, and add value to their products, services and reputations. He spent over 10 years as communications director for the Northeast Florida Builders Association, seven as PR director for Renaissance Creative, a major real estate brand development firm, and time as a newspaper editor, reporter, publicist and broadcaster. Mike was appointed to the Board in 2016 to fill an open position and is now seeking re-election. For the past few months, he has been instrumental in developing FGBC brand awareness efforts.

Ron Carpenter, Founder
Carpenter Homes LLC, Tampa, FL
Board Category: Development and Construction

Over the past two decades, Ron Carpenter has become synonymous with sustainable development initiatives and strategic land acquisition in Florida. After graduating with a Master of Science in Real Estate from the University of Florida’s Warrington College of Business, Carpenter worked his way from Land Acquisition Analyst to the youngest Vice President of Land Acquisition and Development throughout the nation for all the national home builders. In 2007, he founded Carpenter Companies Florida, which owns a variety of companies including: Strategic Environmental Lands, Strategic Land and Property Sales, Florida Realty Hub, and most recently Carpenter Homes. Throughout his career, Carpenter has sat on the Florida Green Building Coalition Board of Directors and served the City of Tampa as part of its Affordable Housing Advisory Committee. In his time as a builder, Carpenter has been involved in the development of over 10,000 residential units.

Peggy Christ, Broker/Owner
Bee Green Realty LLC, Bradenton, FL
Board Category: Real Estate, Finance & Property Services

Peggy is a native of Buffalo, New York and has lived in Bradenton since 1988. She is the Broker/Owner of Bee Green Realty LLC and has enjoyed over 30 years experience in Real Estate development, with seven years in commercial (Multi-Family) in Houston, Texas. She is passionate about empowering Realtors/Brokers/Builders and pretty much everyone she comes in contact with, to make green choices to improve our homes and help our environment. She is relentless in her efforts to ensure that green efforts are recognized for their environmental and financial benefits. Peggy holds a NAR (National Association of Realtors) Green Certification, Manatee Association of Realtors Treasurer 2014 and Board of Director since 2011, has been Manatee Association of Realtors Green Chair 2011-2014, Manatee/Sarasota Builders Industry Green Chair, FHA 203k Construction & Rehab Certified, Shortsale, Foreclosure & REO Certified, the PRIM award from Manatee Association, ReMax Hall of Fame recognition, Five Star Realtor in Sarasota and Board Member of the Old Braden River Historical Society. She is a member of the National Association of Professional Women and Manatee Chamber of Commerce.

Arturo Griego
G3aec, Miami, FL

Arturo is a licensed architect and general contractor and owner of G3 AEC & itecdesign based in Miami, Fl. As the founding member for the firms, Arturo has been involved in all aspects of the design and construction process for many project types in locations throughout the USA, China, South America, and the Caribbean. Itecdesign is an architecture and design studio while G3 AEC is a consulting firm dedicated to green building technology. Arturo has recruited several high-rise projects for certification by FGBC and he is active on the FGBC High-Rise Committee.

Cindy Hall, Director
Future Builders of America, Jensen Beach, FL

Board Category: Academic & Research


Cindy Hall currently serves as Chair of the FGBC Programs and Promotions Committee and is a Past President and Board Member of FGBC. She is an independent consultant and account manager for small businesses as well as in independent sales representative for several hardscape material manufacturers. Cindy has been involved in green building and the FGBC since 2007. In that same year, she founded and chaired the Treasure Coast Builders Association’s (TCBA) Green Building Council to help educate local builders. She remained the chair for the next 4 years. Cindy has been an active participant in many of the FGBC committees, primarily Programs & Promotions, Green Trends, and Membership. She initiated the FGBC Regional Liaison program and serves as Regional Liaison for the Treasure Coast region. She currently serves on the executive boards of the TCBA and is a Past 2nd Vice President and current Life Director of the Florida Home Builders Association (FHBA). In 2010 Cindy received the FHBA “Woman of Distinction” award for her contributions to the industry.

Deirdre Irwin
St. Johns River Water Management District, Palatka, FL

Deirdre Irwin has served as the Florida Water Star Program Coordinator since 2007. During her tenure FWS program has seen significant increase in builder participation and expanded from one to three residential certification tiers. Additionally, the FWS Commercial and Community programs have undergone development during this time to reach initial piloting phases.

Deirdre received a Diploma in Environmental Management from Dublin Institute of Technology and a Bachelor of Environmental Science from the University of Ulster in Northern Ireland before coming to work for the St. Johns River Water Management District in 1989. She has experience with the District’s surface water regulatory programs, water resource education programs, and certification program development and implementation. Her work as the Florida Water StarSM Coordinator involves creating the framework upon which this important water conservation program is based.

Her areas of focus include:

– Reaching out to builders to become involved in the program
– Developing appropriate training for Florida Water StarSM certifiers
– Networking with utilities, planning staff and other water management districts to develop working partnerships
– Exploring possible areas of expansion for the program and coordinating the partnership with South West Florida Water Management District and South Florida Water Management District
– Coordinating the revision of the residential criteria and the development of commercial criteria

Mike Rogers, Principle
Southern Advocacy Group

Mike has focused his efforts on advocating for affordable housing and energy conservation and efficiency issues. Since 2011, he has served on the Board of Housing Finance Authority of Leon County and has been its chair the past three years. Mike served on the Florida Green Building Coalition (FGBC) Board of directors from 2010 to 2016 and as chair of the FGBC Affordable Housing Committee for several years. He was instrumental in introducing the FGBC Green Building Certification Standards to Tallahassee and established the first development (Southern Oaks) in Leon County that requires all homes be built to the FGBC Green Home Standard. He has over 15 years of experience in real estate investment and development. He is actively involved in sustainability efforts for the community and served on the Leon County Climate Action Summit Leadership Team.

Steve Armstrong, Owner/President
Ekocentric LLC, Tampa, FL

Board Category: Real Estate, Finance & Property Services

Steve Armstrong is a Realtor, Certified Building Contractor, a FGBC Certifying Agent and a LEED AP BD+C who is passionate about real estate, construction, and Green Building.   Over the past 17 years, he has followed his passion in real estate and construction to focus on Green Building.  He has been doing Green Building Certifications for over 10 years and certified approximately 100 homes. His personal passion extends to personal life with a Board leadership position at the Sustany Foundation.  He is interested in finding ways to escalate FGBC and Green Building.

Julie C Christesen, Chief Administrative Officer
ES Green & Company LLC, Tallahassee, FL

Board Category: At Large

Julie Christesen is Chief Administrative Officer Energy/Green Rating ES Green & Co. Julie is an FGBC Green Certifier and HERS rater and has been working in sustainability for many years. She came over to the Green Certification/Energy rating field in mid-2022 but was deeply involved in sustainable transportation planning prior to that jump. Since joining ES Green & Co., she has worked on many kinds of certifications, including high end residential, Habitat for Humanity houses, general residential development, and disaster recovery rebuild homes. She was also selected as a RESNET emerging fellow for 2024.

Daniel J. Denis, President
Runbrook, West Palm Beach, FL

Board Category: Design & Analysis

Daniel Denis joined RunBrook in 2012. He uses his 20-plus years of uniquely diverse design and construction experience to help clients reach their sustainability goals effectively and efficiently. With an education in construction management and he also had experience on the design consultant, contracting, and third-party inspection sides of the building design and construction process. Daniel holds various professional credentials including LEED AP with Building Design & Construction Specialty, FGBC Certifying Agent, NGBS Verifier, RESNET HERS Rater, and ENERGY STAR Verifier.

Juliette Desfeux, Sustainability Advisor
Spinnaker Group A Division of Socotec, West Palm Beach, FL

Board Category: Design & Analysis

Juliette Desfeux is a Sustainability Consultant and Advisor for Spinnaker Group, a division of Scotec. She possesses three LEED certifications, is an EcoDistricts AP as well as being a Florida Green Building Coalition Designated Professional. She is passionate about coral reef protection and sea-level rise. She has worked as a sustainability consultant helping local governments and architects in Tahiti promote and develop green construction is a remote-island context. As a consultant she has worked on certifications for corporate and educational projects as well as working as an urban planner.

Tony Morgan, Deputy Director
Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, Tallahassee, FL

Board Category: Governmental

Tony Morgan serves as the Deputy Director for Florida’s Office of Energy, located within the Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services.  The office is responsible for the development of energy policy and programs for the state as well as promoting the use of renewable energy and energy efficient technologies.   Mr. Morgan’s responsibilities include supervision and oversight of policy development, program and grant design, and legislative tracking.  Prior to joining the Department, he worked for the State of Florida’s Small Cities Community Development Block Grant Program.

Hjalmar Pachas, Building Facility and Technology Coordinator
Manatee County, Bradenton, FL

Board Category: Development & Construction

Hjalmar Pachas is a mechanical engineer who graduated from the University of Carabobo in Valencia, Venezuela in 2003. In 2021, Hjalmar achieved a certification as an Energy Manager. In 2018, Hjalmar became an integral part of Manatee County’s Energy and Sustainability division. This role holds special significance for Hjalmar as it allowed him to contribute to the community and our country. Hjalmar believes his work plays a vital role in ensuring the resilience and sustainability of our nation for future generations.  He led a multidisciplinary team in the re-certification of Manatee County through the FGBC certification process.

Dustin Stephany, Sustainable Building Coordinator
University of Florida, Gainesville, FL

Board Category: Academic & Research

Dustin Stephany is the Sustainable Building Coordinator at the University of Florida has a wide range of experience in engineering and construction management, as well as building operations and maintenance for a multitude of building types, including corporate office headquarters, hospitals, military detention facilities, luxury residential homes, sports facilities, and university buildings. He currently guides building professionals in the development and execution of sustainable projects on campus.  The University of Florida prides itself on having more green building certifications than any other public higher education institution.


Florida Green Building Coalition