Abstract: Carter O'Brien joined the Field Museum's green team when he started working at the Museum in 1997, and has chaired it since 2004. In 2012 the Museum shifted him to the newly created position of Sustainability Manager to recognize his contributions in that regard. Since that time the Museum has received LEED certification for three exhibition halls, as well as building-wide LEED Gold certification in Operations and Maintenance. He was part of the team that put together a Sustainable Food Operator program for the Museum's two restaurants, which were installed in 2013 and 2014; the restaurants divert 74% of their waste from landfill, and have increasing goals for local and sustainably sourced menu items. Additional projects underway include a complete overhaul of the Museum's landscaping with native plantings, zero waste efforts, and extending his work to the other 10 cultural institutions on Chicago Park District property as co-chair of the Museums in the Parks Green Committee.
Bio: Carter O’Brien, LEED AP O+M, is a Sustainability Officer and works in the Field Museum of Natural History’s Office of Strategic Science Initiatives. As chair of the Museum’s green team (A Greener Field) he works to institutionalize sustainability principles in areas such as recycling, food operations, alternative transportation, urban agriculture/community gardening and renewable energy. In 2008 he received Fair Trade Chicago’s first-ever Changemaker of the Year award, which recognized his efforts to make the Museum’s Corner Bakery restaurant the only one in America that served only Fair Trade and Rainforest Alliance certified coffee. A 46 year old Chicago native (UIUC class of '94), he is also the Vice President of the Chicago Recycling Coalition, a Treekeeper, as well as an avid cyclist, musician and martial artist.