Oceania Biophilia Summit 2019 Speakers


CEO International Living Future Institute
Author of ‘Creating Biophilic Buildings

Amanda Sturgeon, FAIA is the founder and driving force behind ILFI’s Biophilic Design Initiative and is a sought-after expert in biophilic design around the world. Amanda is an award-winning architect who enjoyed a successful 15-year career working to harmonize the relationship between people and nature on projects such as Islandwood on Bainbridge Island, Washington. In 2013 she was elected as a Fellow of the American Institute of Architects (AIA) in recognition for her extensive advocacy and volunteer service to the green building movement, for which she has been a visionary leader. She was named one of the top ten most powerful women in sustainability in 2015 as a recipient of the Women in Sustainability Leadership Award. Amanda grew up in the United Kingdom, became a citizen of Australia, and now lives on Bainbridge Island, Washington, with her nature-loving family.



Environmentally Responsible Designer, Artist

David Trubridge is New Zealand's best known furniture/lighting designer: his work, which is all manufactured by his own company in Hawkes Bay, is sold and exhibited all around the world. His designs have featured in countless international publications, including the most influential, as an instigator of the trend of 'raw sophistication' and as an exemplar of environmentally responsible design. In 2008 the French magazine Express listed him as one of the top 15 designers in the world, and in 2012 the Pompidou Centre in Paris purchased his 'Icarus' installation for its permanent collection. In 2019 he was recognised in the Queen’s Birthday honours list as an Officer of the New Zealand Order of Merit for services to design.



Archeologist, Writer and Conservationist

Leslie Van Gelder, Ph.D. is an archaeologist, writer, and conservationist based in Glenorchy, New Zealand. She is the author of multiple books largely centered around the theme of sense of place. Her archaeological work on Upper Paleolithic finger flutings has been the subject of a TEDx talk, two documentaries, multiple papers in both academic and popular presses and is featured in the 2019 Massey Lectures in Canada. She is a professor of Global Education at Walden University, is the Executive Officer of the Whakatipu Wildlife Trust and chairs the Glenorchy Heritage and Museum Group.



Executive Director Living Future Institute Australia

Stephen is a UK-registered architect and Australian-educated Project Manager with an MA in Sustainability & Design. He has been in the building industry for 18 years, working across multiple sectors and scales to advance towards a better environment. Stephen co-founded not-for-profit environmental building and research organisation Architecture for Change in 2011, has taught at various levels from Master’s Degree level to unemployed people looking to enter the industry. He is the current Executive Director, Projects of the not-for-profit Living Future Institute of Australia, and the Living Building Challenge Manager for Frasers Property Australia on the Burwood Brickworks retail centre.