News Release

UC Davis Graduate School of Management Earns LEED Platinum Award for Green Building
First Business School Building in California and Third Nationwide to Achieve Highest Ranking

(Davis, CA) — Maurice J. Gallagher, Jr. Hall, home of the UC Davis Graduate School of Management, has earned a “platinum” certification from the U.S. Green Building Council, the first business school building in California awarded the highest green building ranking. Nationwide, only two other business school buildings have won a platinum ranking.

The platinum complex houses Gallagher Hall and the adjacent UC Davis Conference Center. The 83,000-square-foot project, completed in September 2009, was designed and built to use 30 percent less energy than a typical office building. A 102-kilowatt photovoltaic solar power array is scheduled to be installed on the complex’s rooftops this fall.

We’re thrilled with the platinum rating for Gallagher Hall, which reflects the Graduate School of Management’s and UC Davis’ culture of environmental responsibility and our collective commitment to furthering the global adoption of sustainable green building and development practices.”

–  Dean Steven C. Currall

“UC Davis is a pioneer in clean technology research and energy-efficiency solutions, and this is yet another example of how our campus both creates and adopts clean energy innovations,” Currall added.

Worldwide, only 610 buildings have earned the rigorous platinum certification since 2000, when the building council established its LEED rating system.

The Gallagher Hall/Conference Center complex is the third project at UC Davis to earn the platinum certification, more than any other University of California campus. The complex joins the UC Davis Robert Mondavi Institute for Wine and Food Science, which made history last year as the first brewery, winery and food-processing complex in the world to go platinum. In 2007, the UC Davis Tahoe Environmental Research Center in Incline Village, Nev., won platinum status.

Philanthropy played a key role in these achievements. Gallagher Hall was supported by a $10 million gift from Gallagher, a Las Vegas airline executive and alumnus, and his wife Marcia.

Marcia and I were thrilled to learn of the Platinum rating for the building. It’s the result of a team effort that reflects the School’s collaborative culture and leadership on issues of clean energy and environmental sustainability, which are very important to us.

– Maurice J. Gallagher, Jr., CEO, Allegiant Air

The Conference Center, located across from the UC Davis Robert and Margrit Mondavi Center for the Performing Arts and adjacent to the campus’ Hyatt Place hotel, hosts nearly 500 conferences annually, including last years’ Governors Global Climate Summit 3, an event that drew leaders from around the world to develop subnational collaboration on policies and strategies to reduce greenhouse gas pollution and stimulate green jobs.

The San Francisco office of Sasaki Associates, Inc., designed the $34 million Graduate School of Management and Conference Center project. Sundt Construction’s Sacramento office served as general contractor.

The platinum award adds to UC Davis’ reputation as a pioneer in sustainable building and practices. 

Other achievements include:

  • Sierra Magazine this year ranked UC Davis among the nation’s top 10 “greenest” colleges.
  • UC Davis West Village, a 130-acre development that opened its doors this fall, is the nation’s largest planned zero net energy community.
  • On an average weekday, more than 75 percent of students, faculty, staff and visitors use sustainable transportation (walking, bicycling, carpooling, riding a bus or taking a train) as their primary means of commuting to and getting around on campus.
  • Aggie Football Stadium, the nation’s first zero-waste stadium, in 2010 won first place in the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s nationwide WasteWise Game Day Challenge.
  • The campus spends more than 20 percent of its food budget in dining halls on local products, buys organic items such as poultry and grains, and sources olive oil and tomatoes from campus farms.
  • Through its Smart Lighting Initiative, the campus is striving to reduce its energy demand for lighting by 60 percent by 2015
  • And through its Climate Action Plan, the campus has reduced greenhouse gas emissions below year 2000 levels and is working to reach year 1990 levels by 2020. 

LEED, or Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design, is an internationally recognized green building certification system that provides a framework for identifying and implementing practical and measurable green building design, construction, operations and maintenance approaches. The Green Building Council is a Washington, D.C.-based nonprofit committed to achieving a sustainable future through cost-efficient and energy-saving green buildings.

According to the council, buildings are responsible for 39 percent of carbon dioxide emissions, 40 percent of energy consumption and 13 percent of water consumption nationwide. Greater building efficiency can meet 85 percent of future U.S. demand for energy, and a national commitment to green building could generate 2.5 million American jobs, according to council estimates.

About the Graduate School of Management

The UC Davis Graduate School of Management is consistently ranked among the premier business schools in the United States and internationally. The school has nearly 600 MBA students enrolled in Full-Time MBA and Working Professional MBA programs on the UC Davis campus, in Sacramento and in the San Francisco Bay Area. U.S.News & World Report ranks UC Davis among the top 6 percent of MBA programs in the nation. The Economist ranks the school’s faculty quality No. 6 in the world. Learn more at

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