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From a young age, Renee Alnoubani felt the need to give back to her community. As a Georgia Tech civil engineering student, she quickly learned of The Kendeda Building for Innovative Sustainable Design. The Kendeda Building is Georgia’s first building to earn Living Building Challenge certification, the world’s most ambitious and holistic green building standard. The Kendeda Building is regenerative, generating its own energy and giving back energy to the power grid and treating rainwater to potable on site. A key goal of the building program is to educate and inspire others to incorporate regenerative design concepts into their projects and lives.

The building’s mission was so aligned with Renee’s personal mission that it inspired her to reach out to her congregation, Roswell Community Masjid (RCM), which was beginning work on a new mosque and community center. She emphasized to her congregation’s board and construction team that to truly fulfill their vision of constructing a sustainable campus, they could not strive for anything less than excellence: full Living Building Challenge certification.

Renee seized an opportunity to take initiative within her congregation by starting their Green Team and worked closely with all project teams to show that the Living Building Challenge is possible.

The Kendeda Building was so impactful in Renee’s journey that she sought out to and became a Kendeda Building Fellow to learn more about regenerative design, teach, and inspire others. This was serendipitous because The Kendeda Building director, Shan Arora, had already been engaging with RCM leadership to guide them towards the Living Building Challenge.

When successful, RCM’s mosque and community center will be the first full Living Building Challenge certified house of worship in the world. Exemplifying the kind of community-outreach and collaboration that Georgia Tech strives for, Renee serves as the bridge between Georgia Tech and her congregation.

Renee highlights both Georgia Tech’s commitment to Leading by Example and to responsible stewardship. Her experience shows just how powerful leading by example can be. As she amplifies The Kendeda Building’s purpose in her community, she empowers her congregation to do the same for others, creating a ripple effect of impact.

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