The New Orleans Ernest N. Morial Convention Center’s award-winning sustainability program has proven to be a model of excellence through its innovations in energy efficiency, composting and recycling, and more. The convention center continues to lead the way to a greener future by establishing a director of sustainability and corporate social responsibility and naming Linda Baynham to the position.
In this role, Baynham will focus on establishing company-wide sustainability and corporate social responsibility goals through initiatives on new construction projects, existing assets and sustainability programs. She will also work to expand and build upon the convention center’s reputation as a leader in community and environmental service. Baynham will continue to pursue the Center’s LEED v4.1 “Silver” Certification in Existing Building Operations and Maintenance (EBOM).
“I look forward to Linda’s leadership and placing New Orleans in the national spotlight within our industry and the ‘Green Community,’” says Adam J. Straight, vice president of operations at the MCCNO.
Baynham joins the MCCNO with more than 20 years of experience in the environmental, energy and utility sectors. As a consultant for major clients like Entergy New Orleans, Franklin Energy, Aptim and CLEAResult, Baynham was able to help businesses and residential customers reduce their energy use through the design and implementation of several energy efficiency programs like the New Orleans City Council and Energy New Orleans Energy Smart program, Energy Star’s “Change a Light” Program and more.
Baynham holds an M.B.A. in Finance from Tulane University, an M.S. in Energy Policy from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and a B.A. in physics from Colorado College. Baynham is a LEED Accredited Professional, and is a Certified Energy Manager and GPRO Green Building Operations Trainer. She also brings experiences from prestigious state and national organizations such as the White House Office on Environmental Policy, the Louisiana State Governor’s Office of Coastal Activities, and the Louisiana chapter of the U.S. Green Building Council.
A Seattle native, Baynham has also served as a professor for Tulane’s Freeman School of Business and is a five year member of the Krewe des Fleurs, an all-female “sustainable” Mardi Gras marching group.
What started in 2010 with the computerization of the convention center’s Energy Management System has blossomed into a culture of sustainability-focused practices. Currently, the MCCNO reduces its energy usage by using energy efficient LED lighting in the majority of the building, and reduces its water usage by using more reliable and efficient water saving devices. The convention center has also established recycling and composting programs, and continues sustainability-focused practices in other areas, like green construction, transportation, and more.
The MCCNO continues to lead the way into an energy efficient future by continuing research on projects such as generating renewable energy by installing solar panels on the convention center roof, replacing all existing water fountains to a more environmentally-friendly model, and potentially utilizing rain water for green space irrigation and restroom facilities.
With Baynham leading the charge, the convention center will serve as a model for the local hospitality industry to develop higher sustainability standards and objectives, and create a positive sustainability community, thereby attracting events and businesses to New Orleans.
With 1.1 million square feet of prime exhibit space, in an entirely contiguous hall, the New Orleans Ernest N. Morial Convention Center provides the largest single exhibit space in the country. The MCCNO features an award-winning staff and first-class amenities, and is the sixth largest convention center in the nation. A consistent Top 10 host of the largest conventions and tradeshows in the nation annually, the convention center is also one of the city’s “Top Workplaces.” A leading contributor to the city’s robust tourism economy, the MCCNO’s event activity has produced $90.1 billion in economic impact since its 1985 opening, including $5.7 billion in new tax revenue for state and local governments. For more info, visit www.mccno.com