Meet Suzi Davison, youngest Certified Passive House Consultant in the US

We just learned that our cadre of newly minted Passivhaus consultants at NK includes USA’s youngest CPHC: our own Suzi Davison, age 23.

Imagine Housing. “The challenge is remembering that it’s not just another building. How do you create a beautiful and healthy place for residents, on a small budget? That’s why I’m so excited about Passivhaus.”

While Passivhaus buildings are known for slashing utility and maintenance bills, they also deliver superior thermal comfort and interior air quality to occupants.

“For so many affordable housing clients who are dealing with health issues, living somewhere with stable temperatures and clean air is a great place to start,” Suzi said. “When people think of affordable housing, they might think of slum lords and dilapidated buildings, not ‘clean’ or ‘healthy’ buildings. I want to change that stigma by creating beautiful, hopeful places.”

The Passive House exam was tough. Like many CPHCs, Suzi took it twice.

“The first one was horrible,” Suzi laughed. “But the second time was much better. It’s very challenging, and kind of humbling to know that you’re not going to finish the exam. I was initially in the college mode of memorizing and regurgitating. I wasn’t getting to the deeper level. It’s really fascinating, but you have to nerd out to understand. You have to enjoy it to really get it. Otherwise your body says, ‘no!’”

Suzi and others held study sessions to prep the office for the second exam. Knowing what to expect, they focused on deeper exploration of the many equations that underpin Passivhaus design.

“We had a group that was really dedicated, and NK provided the study snacks, so that was helpful, too,” she winked.

She’ll have the chance to apply her Passivhaus knowledge soon.

“It’s exciting that I can take the lead and have that confidence,” she said. “Regardless of how young I am, I know what I’m doing and have shown the dedication to earn this designation. I hope I can make lots of buildings better through Passivhaus!”