Integrative Approach to Sustainable Laboratories at the University of Colorado Boulder for DOE Smart Labs Accelerator: Industrial Hygienist, Operations, Engineering, Green Labs, and Academia

Shannon Horn, University of Colorado Boulder
Kathryn Ramirez-Aguilar, University of Colorado Boulder
Timothy Lockhart, University of Colorado Boulder
Jason Schlosser, University of Colorado Boulder

This presentation and session will share the approach that the University of Colorado Boulder (CU Boulder) is using to achieve the DOE Smart Labs Accelerator goals while also benefiting other campus wide initiatives such as increased safety in laboratories, laboratory occupant engagement, efficient laboratory equipment and space utilization, optimized capital construction investments, and continuous improvement of building operations.  Our approach is integrative and collaborative involving many campus stakeholders from upper administration to laboratory users.   This approach enables our campus to align resources and maximize the benefits realized from limited funding and labor sources.   

Learning Objectives

  • Learn how CU Boulder plans to achieve the DOE Smart Labs Accelerator goal of 20% energy reduction in laboratory buildings.
  • Learn about the stakeholders and roles involved in our integrative approach and how aligning resources enables more to be accomplished with less funding.
  • Learn about the other campus efforts and initiatives that are benefiting from our integrative, collaborative approach.
  • Learn about the challenges faced and lessons learned while implementing our plans.


Shannon Horn is a professional engineer and LEED AP®, with a Bachelor of Science degree from Colorado State University. Ms. Horn is the Principle campus mechanical engineer for CU Boulder, where she holds a diversity of responsibilities from commissioning agent, to AHJ to supporting energy conservation projects and initiatives campus-wide. Ms. Horn has more than seven years experience as a consulting engineer for a diversity of clients that primarily focused on industrial, laboratories, data centers, institutional, high-tech, and educational facilities. Ms. Horn has twelve years of experience working as a facilities engineer for a semi-conductor/inkjet facility and a higher education learning institute. Regardless of position or job title, Ms. Horn's objective and passion have been oriented towards high-technology environments and how to reduce energy and leveraging resources.

Kathy has a doctorate in Analytical Chemistry and 15 years of laboratory research experience.  She manages the CU Green Labs Program at the University of Colorado-Boulder, a program she has been building & creating since 2009.  She is also dedicated to the Bringing Efficiency to Research (BETR) Grants effort aimed at connecting efficient resource use with the receipt of research funding from sponsors.  BETR Grants is presently the focus of the I2SL University Alliance Group that Kathy chairs.

Timothy Lockhart is a certified industrial hygienist and certified hazardous materials manager with a Bachelor of Science in environmental chemistry and toxicology and a Master’s of Science in industrial hygiene from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. Currently employed as an industrial hygienist for CU Boulder, Mr. Lockhart is responsible for a variety of programs, ranging from indoor air quality to employee exposure assessments, hazardous exhaust ventilation, and employee trainings. Prior to joining the EH&S team at CU Boulder, Mr. Lockhart was a consulting industrial hygienist for seven years and helped manage health and safety risks for various industrial and corporate clients. As a consultant, Mr. Lockhart developed and implemented EH&S programs and corresponding audits, conducted indoor air quality investigations, and implemented various strategies to help protect worker health and safety. Mr. Lockhart's understanding of federal and state regulations and current technology has allowed him to provide cost savings for clients, while ensuring sound health and safety solutions.

Jason Schlosser is the Assistant Director of Facilities Operations, and holds a bachelor degree in Environmental, Population and Organismic Biology as well as a bachelor degree in Kinesiology and Applied Physiology from the University of Colorado, Boulder.  Mr. Schlosser brings a range of experience to his position, having worked in private industry and higher education as an HVAC/Controls technician for 9 years, 4 years as a work management process analyst and 11 years of supervision and leadership. Mr. Schlosser is responsible for ensuring the mission critical programs of the campus continue to operate uninterrupted and as efficiently as possible.  Laboratories consume the greatest amount of resources, both in terms of labor and material, making our research facilities a key strategic focus for the organization to leverage resources in order to maintain our asset values.


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