Corporate Sustainability Strategies (CSS) is an independent commercial real estate sustainability consulting firm, passionate about results. Services are client-centric, centered on driving enhanced financial returns by designing and implementing cost effective sustainability strategies.
Companies may have dipped their toe in the water of sustainability and have achieved an ENERGY STAR Label or perhaps even LEED certification. These are great tactical actions and provide advantages. However, Corporate Sustainability Strategies takes sustainability to the next level by developing an over-arching strategy that integrates sustainability into the way organizations do business.
Brenna S. Walraven
BOMA Fellow, BOMI-HP®, CPM® , RPA®
President & CEO
Corporate Sustainability Strategies
Brenna Walraven is an internationally recognized leader in the commercial real estate industry and sustainability sphere. She has excelled at leading large, diverse real estate organizations and has served some of the most discriminating institutional investors.
After almost 30 years in commercial real estate leadership, including 17 years with USAA Real Estate, Ms. Walraven founded Corporate Sustainability Strategies (CSS), a firm dedicated to providing best practice solutions for organizations by helping them develop and implement business-case-focused environmental, social, governance, and resilience (ESG+R) strategies for real estate operations, asset management, and investor engagement.
Ms. Walraven’s clients include both publicly and privately held real estate organizations representing approximately $320 billion in Assets under Management (AuM) globally and include assets in most property types and include debt investments.
Ms. Walraven has served in various executive-level roles, including Head of Property Operations and Portfolio Manager, providing strategic leadership for national, multi-sector real estate portfolios. In these roles, she regularly engaged with investors, joint venture partners, and development partners, and oversaw property management, leasing, national accounts’ procurement, sustainability, risk management, and insurance for assets in every sector (office, industrial, retail, hotel, multifamily, mixed-use, healthcare, storage, and development).
Ms. Walraven served on former California Governor Schwarzenegger’s Real Estate Leadership Council and has testified before the United States Congress on issues of energy efficiency and sustainability. Ms. Walraven is former chair and chief elected officer for Building Owners and Managers Association (BOMA) International, the first woman to serve as chair in the association’s 100-plus-year history. She is a founding leader and developer of BOMA’s Energy Efficiency Program (BEEP®), which has trained over 36,000 real estate professionals. She also was part of the development of the BOMI International, Property and Facility Management Education, High-Performance Sustainable Buildings (BOMI-HP®) designation program, serving as an executive editor and instructor.
As part of her leadership within BOMA International, Ms. Walraven partnered with Clinton Climate Initiative in 2007 to help develop a private sector approach to energy performance contracting (EPC) where retrofits are paid for over time out of savings generated by large building retrofit projects. She also led the redevelopment and launch of the BOMA Energy Performance Contract (BEPC) model with refined tools, case studies, and implementation partners.
To date, results include 28 ENERGY STAR Partner of the Year Awards and client savings of over $50 million in operating costs. Also, led by Ms. Walraven’s expertise, several clients have had consistent top-performance recognition with GRESB (formerly known as Global Real Estate Sustainability Benchmark). Multiple portfolios have been awarded GRESB’s Green Star (top performance recognition) and have ranked in the top five performers, with multiple clients achieving the #1 ranking as GRESB Sector Leader for leadership in sustainability strategy, management, and execution.
In addition to serving on several Advisory Boards, being an accomplished author, a sought-after speaker, and an instructor for over 25 years, Ms. Walraven thoroughly enjoys helping organizations and teams pursue excellence and do well by doing good. She is a BOMA Fellow, and she holds a B.A. in Economics and MBA, with an emphasis in finance and real estate, from University of Southern California.
Building Owners and Managers Association (BOMA) International
- Former Chair & Chief Elected Officer – 1st woman in 100-plus-year history of organization
- Executive Editor & Subject Matter Expert, BOMA Green Lease Guide 2018
- BOMA Fellow
- Founding Member & Former Chair, BOMA Energy Efficiency Program (BEEP®)
- Developed BEEP, BEEP 2.0, BEEP for Industrial, BEEP Plus: Renewables & Clean Technologies, and BEEP Plus: Advanced Metering & Monitoring
- Founding Member & Chair, BOMA Energy Performance Contract (BEPC) Model Task Force
- Developed BEPC and created industry toolkit
- Founding Member, Sustainability Task Force
- 2022 Chairman’s Award – for visionary leadership, accomplishments, and support for both BOMA and real estate industry
BOMI International, Property and Facility Management Education
- Executive Editor & Subject Matter Expert in development of BOMI High-Performance Sustainable Buildings (BOMI-HP®) curriculum and instruction
Department of Energy, Better Buildings Steering Committee
- Member (2008 to present)
- Chair (2008-2009)
Real Estate Roundtable
- Member, SPAC (2000 to present)
- Vice Chair, Sustainability Policy Advisory Council (SPAC) (2009-2011)
- Board Member (2007-2008)
Real Estate Forum’s 65th Anniversary
- Honoree for Next Generation of Leaders
Health & Wellness
- Fitwel Ambassador – ambassadors are well-versed in evidence-based connection between design and health (2018 to present)
- Chapman University
- Columbia University
- New York University, School of Professional Studies, Schack Institute of Real Estate
- California State University, Fullerton
Advisory Boards, Affiliations, and Memberships
- American Society of Adaptation Professionals
- Black Bear Energy, Advisory Board
- Blue Box, Advisory Board
- BOMA International, Fellow
- BOMA Orange County, Advisory Board Chair
- BOMI International, RPA® and BOMI-HP®
- Buildings, Advisory Board
- California State University, Fullerton, Real Estate Land Use Institute, Advisory Board
- Department of Energy, Better Buildings Steering Committee
- Fitwel, Ambassador
- Genea, Advisory Board
- GRESB, Benchmarking Committee for North America
- Green Seal, Board of Directors
- Institute of Real Estate Management (IREM), CPM®
- Real Estate Roundtable, Sustainability Policy Advisory Council (SPAC)
- Urban Land Institute (ULI), Responsible Property Investing Council
- US Green Building Council (USGBC), Member
- Waypoint, Advisory Board
University of Southern California (USC)
- Master of Business Administration (MBA), Finance & Real Estate
- Bachelor of Arts, Economics
Brenna participates in a variety of industry-related panel discussions and speaking engagements. She participated in the Sustainability Accounting Standards Board (SASB) real estate industry working group to develop sustainability disclosure.