The Hauser Center for Nonprofit Organizations became the first LEED-certified project at the Harvard Kennedy School (HKS) when it achieved a LEED Silver certification under the LEED for Commercial Interiors (LEED-CI) version 2.0 rating system on Sept. 2, 2010. It is the 35th LEED-certified project at Harvard.

The Hauser Center moved into its current location in Belfer Hall after it was renovated in 2009. The center moved from its previous off-campus location to facilitate more interaction between students and Hauser Center employees. The center staff and facility leaders took the opportunity to improve the office space’s energy efficiency. The offices were renovated with a mind toward creating a welcoming, comfortable work environment, with offices exposed to natural light and outfitted with energy-efficient appliances. Additional ventilation was installed, all rooms are equipped with motion sensors, and all new equipment is certified as Energy Star.

“Redesigning the Hauser Center with an eye towards efficiency was a win-win. Reusing existing furniture and minimizing new construction by repurposing existing spaces presented opportunities to creatively shape our environment. This process resulted in significant cost savings, greater teamwork between Hauser staff and facilities, as well as dynamic integration of new and historic design elements,” said Hauser Center Executive Director Aviva Luz Argote. “Our work environment has improved dramatically. I was intent that every one working at the center should have access to natural light – in contrast to our previous work space where many people worked in spaces devoid of any day lighting.”