Now more than 5,000 certified green professionals

From the NAHB -- WASHINGTON, March 18--More than 5,000 home builders, remodelers, suppliers and product manufacturers have earned the Certified Green Professional (CGP) educational designation since it was introduced by the National Association of Home Builders in 2008.

From Seattle to Savannah - and everywhere in between - a home buyer is likely to find a CGP to help them make sensible decisions about resource efficiencies and environmental stewardship, said Bob Jones, chairman of NAHB. A home builder from Bloomfield Hills, Mich., Jones was among the first builders in the country to earn the CGP designation.

"The CGP's rapid growth as the housing industry struggles to recover from a prolonged market downturn demonstrates our commitment to green building and meeting customers' needs," Jones said.

"These graduates are looking to the future of home building so they can better compete in the present," he added. "Each graduate is taking advantage of their CGP designation to make better and stronger business decisions - and to help their customers make informed decisions, too."

For Emily Green, a customer service representative for Jimmy Nash Homes in Lexington, Ky., the 24 hours of class work she completed to obtain her CGP makes her a better green advocate for her home buyers. "They are more and more interested in green, both to save money and to help preserve the environment," she said.

David Suszko, a residential buildings solutions specialist for Dow Chemical in Houston, says that the CGP designation makes him a better salesman. When he's explaining the distinctions to home builders or their customers regarding insulation choices, for instance, "I want to talk about all the options -- why certain things are more cost effective, why other products are more energy efficient."

Seven staff members at the Habitat for Humanity affiliate in Waveland, Miss., are also among the recent graduates. Last year, the group decided that all future projects would achieve at least Silver certification to the National Green Building Standard, and they have found that the knowledge they gained in the CGP course is invaluable in meeting this high standard. "It helps us build a higher performing, better quality, more durable house," said Construction Manager Mark Scott. "We want our families to be successful, and since energy costs are typically a home owner's second highest monthly expenditure, it is important that these homes be as efficient as possible."

"There are lots of reasons for home building professionals to obtain the CGP educational designation," said Jones. "The most important is that working with a home builder or remodeler who has a CGP offers a measure of confidence to consumers. They know they're working with a professional who is committed to education and eager to help them make better, greener home buying decisions."

There are CGPs in every state, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico. North Carolina has the most graduates, with more than 500 statewide. Search for Certified Green Professionals nationwide by visiting nahb.org/designationsdirectory and entering "CGP" as a keyword.

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