It’s the People Who Make the Place / Emily Mendez

Emily Mendez is the Director of Sustainability for GFF, where she leads our internal committee comprised of sustainability representatives across all market sectors. Emily is a graduate of Texas Tech University, with experience in institutional, faith-based, corporate, and residential design. She is a Registered Interior Designer in the State of Texas, a LEED AP, and a Fitwel Ambassador. She is also an Associate Member of the American Institute of Architects (AIA) and is the 2022 Chair of the AIA Dallas Committee on the Environment.

Emily’s work on sustainability in the built environment began with a simple desire to better understand the materials she selects for interiors projects. She then dove deeper into how all building design decisions affect people and the planet – particularly decisions that impact carbon emissions. Her current efforts center around education: providing awareness and advocacy on a variety of sustainability-related issues and opportunities both to our staff and our clients.

Emily is the co-author of GFF’s Black & Gold List, which is a GFF initiative to source exterior and interior materials that promote environmental and human health throughout the life of a project – from initial manufacturing to end of life cycle. GFF encourages the selection of materials that are responsibly sourced, low in harmful chemical content, and contribute to reduced carbon emissions.

For more information on our Sustainability practices please contact:

Director of Sustainability
Interior Design Leader


Adaptive Reuse in an Environmentally Conscious Work Environment

Most people in the real estate industry have heard about Adaptive Reuse and it is important to remember the potential value it can bring to the table, particularly for the workplace. Unlike their counterparts on the east and west coasts, developers in Texas are typically not challenged to find available land for ground-up construction. However,…

Can We Go Beyond Sustainability?

“So deep is the environmental crisis; so urgent is the demand for change, that architecture must become not only a profession … but a form of public service.” First Lady Claudia “Lady Bird” Johnson, addressing the 1968 AIA convention. The words above still ring true and speak to the impact our design decisions have on…
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Should We Be Specifying Antimicrobials?

Research has shown that while antimicrobials do have some positive attributes, such as their ability to be used as a preservative in building materials, their presence in the built environment may create more harm than good. These days, the emergence of COVID-19 has made this question a more immediate concern. As states and local municipalities…