Creating a
healthier world

We believe that reconnecting people with the environment will lead to a healthy, prosperous, and regenerative future for all. We leverage high-performance design, whole systems thinking, and research in biophilic design, bioinspired innovation, and ecological design to make this goal a reality. This breadth of work and experience enables us to develop creative, impactful solutions for our clients.

"Good design means better performance in terms of both human and natural environments. Good design also means that we must make our buildings beautiful." - BILL BROWNING, Founder

We lead...

Building upon our deep experience in all aspects of the built environment, we are developing new approaches to address the critical needs for a sustainable future.

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Terrapin Bright Green was founded in 2006 by distinguished environmental strategist Bill Browning and architects Rick Cook and Bob Fox of the prestigious firm COOKFOX Architects. Chris Garvin, an accomplished green architect, soon joined the firm. Together, this alliance of expertise established Terrapin as a trusted consultant to major corporations and developers, governments and other organizations seeking to answer the challenges of high-performance design in the 21st century. To reaffirm our environmental and social values, Terrapin became a Certified B Corporation® in 2016.

The origins of the name “Terrapin”

Terrapin’s Certified B Corporation story 

Bill Browning


Bill Browning is one of the green building and real estate industry’s foremost thinkers and strategists, and an advocate for sustainable design solutions at all levels of business, government, and civil society. His expertise has been sought out by organizations as diverse as Fortune 500 companies, leading universities, non-profit organizations, the U.S. military, and foreign governments.

Bob Fox


Bob Fox is a highly respected leader in the green building movement, whose work has advanced ideas of urban sustainability and design excellence. His projects have set new precedents in scale and strategic impact, establishing him as an influential voice in the architectural profession, the business community, and in service to the public sector.

Chris Garvin

AIA, LEED AP BD+C, Biomimicry Specialist

Chris Garvin is an accomplished practitioner and active voice in the sustainable design community with over twenty years experience. His work spans across building type and scales and includes developing innovative bioinspired products and building systems integration to large-scale planning issues and building code development.

We improve...

Our strategies have multiple environmental, economic, and social benefits for our clients and larger communities, including:

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We improve biodiversity through a deep analysis of place at the outset of each engagement and integrate ecological restoration when appropriate.

Climate Resiliency

Climate Resiliency

We improve climate resiliency through holistic strategies that address environmental and social vulnerabilities, such as poorly functioning ecosystems and fragile communities.

Health & Wellbeing

Health & Wellbeing

We improve access to research in psychology, physiology, and neuroscience for designers, owners, and investors to create a new paradigm for a built environment that is healthy, productive, and profitable.

Energy Utilization

Energy Utilization

We improve energy efficiency and system resiliency for energy-independent, net-producer buildings that represent a new model for carbon-neutral, energy-secure towns and cities.



We improve financial returns by looking beyond incremental opportunities, developing projects that radically improve efficiency and productivity while maintaining a realistic ROI.



We improve indoor environmental quality by applying the latest research into human health, materials, and systems design to support the development of healthy homes and workplaces.

Systems Integration

Systems Integration

We improve systems integration through a holistic design process and a deep understanding of current technologies, yielding unique solutions with state-of-the-shelf equipment.

Water Management

Water Management

We improve water utilization by identifying the appropriate quality and efficiency to meet our clients’ needs, minimizing environmental impacts and addressing changing patterns of water accessibility.

We work...

Colleagues and clients from around the world seek out our experience and advice to develop innovative solutions to meet the challenges of building a sustainable future. Our work is grounded in the unique opportunities of place: reflecting both the culture of the community and the environmental features of a given ecosystem.

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We engage...

Terrapin is a trusted environmental consultant to developers, government agencies, Fortune 50 companies, design firms, and nonprofit organizations. We collaborate with an extensive network of ecologists, engineers, energy experts, neuroscientists, financiers, and other experts to resolve resource constraints, improve financial returns, reduce risks, establish resiliency, and address climate adaptation needs. We are eager to engage with organizations who have ambitious goals or stubborn challenges to create a regenerative world.

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We are...

To develop innovative solutions and pioneering research, we rely on a team of passionate individuals with diverse backgrounds, experience, and interests. Our interdisciplinary team is united by the shared mission of reconnecting people with the environment, and a love of chocolate.

Catie Ryan


Catie is an active voice in the sustainable design community with over fifteen years of experience. Her work focuses on biophilic design and the user experience and includes developing innovative solutions for integrating human health, ecosystem functioning, and building performance. Catie found her way to Terrapin after working with an indigenous hunter-gatherer tribe in Thailand and a UNESCO World Heritage Site in Mexico. She’s an Adirondack 46er, martial artist, and avid cyclist.

Chris Starkey


Chris is a senior project manager and researcher at Terrapin Bright Green. He has a multi-disciplinary background, combining the skills of an architect with knowledge from the environmental sciences. In addition to his work on green buildings, waste, energy, and food systems, Chris teaches and writes about ecological design. At Terrapin, he has worked on projects such as the Buffalo Niagara Riverkeeper Blue Economy Framework and the Technical Study to Identify Building-Based Greenhouse Gas Emission Targets in New York city.

Cas Smith

Cas is a biological engineer specializing in biologically-inspired technology and has a passion for technologies that use biological means to manufacture materials. Originally hailing from the swamps of Louisiana, he has worked on a wide range of projects—from the nanoscale design of solar cells to the planning of composting systems for university campuses. He serves as the project manager for Terrapin’s bioinspired technology development services.

Allison Bernett

Allison is an associate project manager and the public relations coordinator for Terrapin. She holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in architecture with a second major in biology. Allison primarily works on projects and research that draw on both knowledge of the built environment and the natural sciences. She loves photography, enjoys hiking in the Colorado Rockies, and, to the horror of her biking-enthusiast coworkers, rides a bike purchased from Target.

Rebecca Macies

Rebecca is an business operations/analyst for Terrapin. As a student, she studied natural resources policy and management and how policy shapes our relationship with the natural environment. Rebecca has lived in Bhutan, enjoys running half marathons, and never misses an opportunity to use bioinspired puns.