Healthy Building Network Welcomes New Chair, Bradford Grant, New Board Directors, Dr. Veena Singla and Mike Werner

HBN | February 2020 | Newsletter

Healthy Building Network is thrilled to announce that Dr. Veena Singla and Michael Werner have joined our Board of Directors. This year, HBN’s 20th anniversary, is an exciting time to join our other visionary board leaders. HBN is moving into a new chapter, and our board is helping us to define and achieve scaled impact.

Introducing Veena and Mike: 


Veena Singla, Ph.D., is a Senior Scientist with the Natural Resources Defense Counsel. Previously, she was the Associate Director of Science & Policy at the University of California, San Francisco Program on Reproductive Health and the Environment. 

Her work focuses on informing policies with the most current scientific principles and data to prevent and reduce harmful environmental exposures. Veena’s research includes indoor environmental quality and how exposure to multiple chemicals affects health outcomes, especially for vulnerable populations such as workers, pregnant women, and young children. She specializes in communicating complex, scientific information at the intersection of research and policy. Her work has led to groundbreaking policies that establish frameworks for safer chemical evaluation and substitution.

She worked as a postdoctoral teaching fellow at Stanford University and as an adjunct faculty member at the University of San Francisco. She holds a bachelor’s degree in chemistry from the University of California, Berkeley, and a Ph.D. in cell biology from the University of California, San Francisco.


Mike Werner is Lead for Circular Economy at Google where he leads a cross-functional team in achieving their circular economy vision across their operations, products, and supply chains. Previously at Google, Mike led the product sustainability, biocompatibility, and environmental compliance team for the company’s consumer hardware division.

Before joining Google in 2017, Mike led safer chemistry and biocompatibility initiatives at Apple and product sustainability for Haworth Inc, a global manufacturer of office furniture. Mike has worked in the green building and product design space for 15 years, including with renowned green architect Bill McDonough.

Mike holds a bachelor’s degree in chemistry from Villanova University. In addition to serving on the board of directors for the Healthy Building Network, he also serves on advisory boards for several organizations including the Green Science Policy Institute, ChemForward, and Mike previously served as a sustainability advisor to the U.S. Department of Homeland Security and the National Institute of Building Sciences.

Healthy Building Network looks forward to the talent and insight Veena and Mike bring as they join our distinguished leadership. 

Bradford Grant, Chair: Professor of Architecture, Department of Architecture of the College of Engineering and Architecture at Howard University, Washington DC.

Yianice Hernandez, Vice Chair: Director of Capital Planning for the New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA) oversees the allocation of federal, state and city capital resources to preserve NYCHA’s housing stock to provide safe, clean, connected homes for over 400,000 New Yorkers.

Murali Selvaraj, Treasurer: Chief Information Officer of Perkins+Will, is responsible for all facets of the firm’s information and knowledge management architecture.

Monica Nakielski, Secretary: Director, Sustainability & Environmental Health, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts, is responsible for providing vision and leadership in the design and development of BCBSMA’s sustainability and environmental health strategy.

Dave Rapaport, Immediate Past Chair: Global Social Mission Officer at Ben & Jerry's, has been a sustainability thought leader for over 30 years, spanning the business, nonprofit, and government sectors. 

George Salah: Chairman & CEO of Apparent, Inc., a technology energy company, providing products and services to maximize the performance of renewable energy assets and the creation of the smart grid.

Brophy Christensen: Partner at O'Melveny & Myers’ San Francisco office and co-chair of the Capital Markets Practice, has extensive experience representing issuers, underwriters, and investors in a wide range of public and private equity and debt offerings and exchange offers, including initial public offerings, high-yield debt financing, and convertible offerings.

Bill Walsh: HBN Founder and Strategic Advisor. Bill started HBN in 2000 after a 15-year career in the environmental health and justice movement. He served as Executive Director until 2016.

HBN’s board convened in New York City in February to usher in our new Chair, Brad Grant, and to welcome Veena and Mike. Topics such as organizational growth, measuring impact, and advancing diversity, equity and inclusion were on the agenda. 

“It was an energizing retreat with a group of amazing thought leaders,” reflected Gina Ciganik, HBN’s Chief Executive Officer. “I’m grateful for their partnership and leadership, and I’m looking forward to an exciting year ahead.” 

To keep up with our news and insights, subscribe to HBN’s newsletter. To find the healthy building solutions you seek, log onto Pharos or HomeFree.