Green Festival Speakers

Michael Berkshire


Michael began his career as a stockbroker. After five years of managingportfolios, he decided to pursue his interest in environmentalprotection and study Environmental Planning.

Upon receiving a Masters Degree in Urban and Regional Planning, Michaelheld several positions within local and regional governmentalorganizations in Iowa in solid waste management planning and education.Michael recently moved to Chicago where he initially worked for theChicago Park District as a Project Manager in Capital Construction.During his tenure at the Park District, he managed several largescalecapital improvement projects, including the reconstruction of SouthLake Shore Drive, which runs through historically significant Burnhamand Jackson Parks, and the restoration of the Palm House at theGarfield Park Conservatory.

He is now with the Department of Planning and Development developingand implementing public policy and incentives that encourage the use ofgreen roofs and sustainable urban and building design in the privatesector. Michael led an interdepartmental team that developed theBuilding Green/Green Roof Policy that requires private developers toinclude sustainable strategies in projects that are receiving financialor zoning assistance from the City. As of January 2007, this policy hasrequired the design of over 300 green roofs, totaling nearly 3 millionsquare feet of vegetative cover. Michael has also been involved withthe development of several innovative green roof incentive programs andis coordinating the creation of the Citys Green Urban Design FrameworkPlan.