Ecotrust's renovation of the brick and timber Jean Vollum Natural Capital Center has maintained the character of the original 1895 structure while incorporating environmentally innovative techniques. Some highlights include:
Read about the Opening Celebration
Spencer B. Beebe
Ecotrust Founder and President
A native of Portland, Spencer founded Ecotrust in 1991, thereby applying more than two decades of experience with national and international conservation to the development of a new strategy for "the rain forests of home." Spencer was founding president of Conservation International in 1987, and worked previously with The Nature Conservancy for 14 years as Northwest representative, western regional director, vice president, and president of The Nature Conservancy's International Program. Spencer served in the Peace Corps in Honduras from 1968–71. He earned a master's degree in forest science from Yale University's School of Forestry and Environmental Studies in 1974, and a BA in economics from Williams College in 1968. In addition to his work with Ecotrust, Spencer serves on the boards of a variety of national and international conservation organizations.
Bettina von Hagen
Vice President, Managing Director of the Natural Capital Fund, and the Center’s Project Manager
Bettina manages the reconstruction of the Natural Capital Center, the newest and largest asset of Ecotrust’s Natural Capital Fund. The $19 million Natural Capital Fund is a mechanism to bring and leverage capital and entrepreneurial energy to conservation and appropriate development, and invests in business, projects, and initiatives that help build a conservation economy. Before joining Ecotrust in 1993, Bettina spent nine years in commercial banking, most recently as Vice President of First Interstate Bank of Oregon. She holds an MBA from the University of Chicago and a BA in Biology and History from the University of the Pacific. She serves on the boards of EcoTimber, a distributor of certified wood products; ShoreBank Enterprise, a conservation-based enterprise development organization; Forest Trends, which promotes incentives for maintaining and restoring forest ecosystems; and the Friends of Opal Creek, which stewards the natural and cultural values of the Opal Creek Wilderness and Scenic Recreation Area.
Heritage Consulting Group
Bob is a partner in Heritage Consulting Group, the developer of the Natural Capital Center. Bob is applying lessons learned from the Ecotrust building to his next project — One Waterfront Place, a 250,000 square foot office building in the River District. Plans for One Waterfront Place include: a green roof of vegetation that absorbs and filters rainwater, the use of FSC-certified wood, sophisticated energy modeling, and windows that open. Bob has been involved in the successful renovation of over 2,000,000 square feet of office and retail space in Portland, including Albers Mill, a grain mill converted into an office center in 1989 by H. Naito Properties. Bob also helped lead the community effort to build the Portland Classical Chinese Garden, and serves as the garden's board president.
HOLST Architecture has been identified as one of Portland's most versatile and innovative "Design Firms to Watch" and has repeatedly been recognized for progressive, energetic and award-winning design. A Portland-based company founded in 1992 by John Holmes and Jeffrey Stuhr, HOLST is committed to the idea that architecture should not only respond to the specific requirements of a project but should also be beautiful. Recently completed Portland projects include: Rivertec, the restoration of an 80,000 sq. ft. warehouse into a mixed use building in the Pearl District; Oregon Ballet Theatre, an interior renovation of a Southeast Portland bank building into dance studios and offices; and Pacific Northwest College of Art, a Pearl District gallery and school. The Ecotrust project is HOLST's largest to date and most ambitious, incorporating historic restoration and cutting edge environmental design. Project architects are principal Jeff Stuhr and Gabriel Small. Visit the HOLST Architecture web site.
Walsh Construction Company
Portland-based Walsh Construction Company, Ecotrust's general contractor, is a medium sized building construction company with offices in Portland, Oregon, and Seattle, Washington. Founded in 1961, by Bob Walsh and his brother Tom, the company now has about 450 employees with Bob Walsh as president. Dan Snow is project manager and has been with the company for 11 years. The company's superintendent on the Ecotrust project, Carrington Barrs, recently completed a masters thesis on green building in the Pacific Northwest. Under his supervision, the Ecotrust job site has achieved a record-setting rate of recycling and reclaiming 97 percent of construction debris.
Edelman Soljaga Watson
Established in 1970, Edelman Soljaga Watson is an award-winning interior and architectural design firm that has had the privilege of collaborating on many of the Pacific Northwest’s most significant projects. Successfully expanding upon the client’s vision to design and create a unique “sense of space” while remaining within the budget is a hallmark of Edelman Soljaga Watson. The firm is certified with Oregon’s Office of Minority, Emerging and Small Business as a WBE. Carol Edelman and Breese Watson designed the Ecotrust offices and the Ecotrust Conference Center using a variety of environmentally beneficial and innovative material.