Dr Steffie Broer
Steffie is the founding director of Bright Green Futures. She has lived in communities in Spain, Chile, Germany, the UK and Sweden and led several eco-construction projects in Germany, Portugal, Spain and the UK. Steffie’s first self-build memories are laying blocks with her newborn baby Isham on her back. Isham’s first memories are watching diggers and smiling at builders from the baby bouncer in the entrance of their temporary trailer home.
Steffie founded Bright Green Futures after 8 years of working as an advisor for Sustainable Energy Solutions at ESD (now Verco) and completing a Masters with Distinction in Applied Energy and Buildings (Cranfield University) and a Doctorate in Engineering at UCL’s Centre for Urban Sustainability and Resilience, where she studied eco-self-build communities around the world to find out what really works, what delivers true benefits to self-builders and what makes a significant contribution towards solving climate change.
She won an award for her publication on how to achieve low carbon livelihoods in new build housing communities, and since no one was making them happen, she thought it might as well be her. Steffie loves a challenge. When someone says: “this can’t be done” she loves going for it and creating the world she is passionate about. In recognition of her achievements Steffie won the 2016 South West Energy Efficiency Champion of the Year Award.
For more information about Steffie, please see her personal website: steffiebroer.com.
Dr Larch Maxey
Larch is also a director of Bright Green Futures. Larch has an unrivalled combination of practical and academic experience of building and living in sustainable communities. He has leading edge expertise in sustainable transport, wellbeing, legal structures, food growing and how peaceful community living can really really work for everyone. Since 1988 Larch has co-founded over twenty sustainability social enterprises, including the pioneering Lammas Ecovillage whilst teaching, researching and practicing sustainability and writing over 50 academic and popular publications. His co-edited books include The Sustainable University (Routledge/Earthscan) and Low Impact Development: The Future in Our Hands which sold out within 8 months and is now available as a free download.
Larch has held lectureships and post-doctoral research posts with Swansea University, the Centre for Alternative Technology and Plymouth University.
In 2012 he co-founded the Network of Wellbeing (www.networkofwellbeing.org) and remains its community projects manager. He was a director of the ELC (www.ecologicalland.coop) from 2009-2014 and its Chair from 2012-2014. Larch has built and lived in several low impact homes and is delighted to be pursuing his passion for affordable, low impact homes within integrated sustainable communities by working with Bright Green Futures.
Martin is Bright Green Futures’ business, project and operations manager. Graduating from Bolton University (2001) with a Bsc/BA Hons in Business Studies and Urban Cultural Studies, he has a lifelong interest in how the global economy impacts society.
Martin was previously a director for Ecomotive, a social enterprise that was borne from the same project as Bright Green Futures, The Yard in Bristol. When he’s not managing the team and projects for Bright Green Futures he works as a consultant for start-ups, sharing Steffie’s entrepreneurial mindset and enthusiasm for creating unique team cultures.
Pablo is a marketing and communications assistant at Bright Green Futures. His role involves working on a variety of projects and tasks, specifically harnessing his writing and design skills. Pablo graduated from Oxford Brookes University in 2016 with a Master’s in City and Regional Planning, specialising in urban design. He has experience assisting the delivery of regeneration projects with Fareham Borough Council and has worked with his hometown community to help develop their neighbourhood plan.
Since moving to Bristol in the summer of 2017 he developed a particular interest in self-build, co-housing and sustainable design, having become disillusioned with traditional housing provision in the UK. Growing up in generation rent he wants to create sustainable and affordable housing opportunities, and raise living standards and expectations. Pablo believes Bright Green Futures’ eco self-build communities can set a leading example and pave the way for future housing developments to follow in their footsteps.
Laura is Bright Green Futures’ customer champion and events manager. She has ten years experience of organising international conferences and fundraising events. Her passion for sustainable communities began as a child when her parents and their friends took on an unloved Victorian mansion to live and work in. She relished participating in the community events and working for the wedding company that was started there. Living with Steffie in The Yard and The Courtyard consolidated her passion for eco self-build communities. She believes comfortable, supportive housing and community is a human right. She is a founding member of the Fishponds Co-Build and operations manager at Dovetail Design and Build. She was a co-founder of Wellbeing at Hamilton House.
Caroline is developing Bright Green Futures’ company structure and growth plan. She is lucky enough to live in Bristol’s original self-build community, The Yard, a major inspiration for Bright Green Futures. During her 3-year tenure as Chair of AVAG, The Yard developer, she re-secured the stalled European funding and kick-started the development of the community hub, Wild Goose Space, and its adjoining offices and flats. She remains a Director of The Yard’s Estate Management group.
For fifteen years Caroline worked as a Development Consultant for ten public/voluntary sector clients, including Bristol City Council, The Beckley Foundation, The Kingswood Foundation, and St Pauls Unlimited. Briefs included business planning, fundraising, organisational capacity building, event management, training delivery and partnership development.
Caroline is very proud to have spent five years as Chief Executive Officer of Transform Drug Policy Foundation and, before that, five years as Community Affairs Executive and Director/Producer at HTV (where she gave Sacha Baron Cohen – aka Ali G – his first job in TV!).
She is also proud to be a mum, yoga teacher and founder of Bristol Health and Nutrition.