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  • Writer's pictureArt of Construction

AOC Show 339: Building green with ADL Ventures

“Often we share problems…It can’t stop there, and too often it does…We have to come to the table with ‘Here’s an idea that might work.’ The moment we start thinking about the future in terms of potential solutions…those conversations start adding up. That habit makes the collaboration work better, and it will get us to a point where we can make an impact.”

This podcast episode features a conversation with Nolan Brown, the founder of ADL Ventures, about decarbonization and the challenges of implementing clean energy solutions in the construction industry. This episode is also happy to introduce Jason Blanker as the co-host! The conversation covers topics such as the role of drones in construction, the lack of adoption of innovation in the industry, and the future of technology in construction.

Nolan is a seasoned entrepreneur and research leader with 15 years of C-Suite experience in energy, buildings, and transportation sectors. A 5-time founder, he brings a wealth of innovation and strategic insight to his roles. He has driven organizations to success as a board member of building materials manufacturer and offsite leader Sto Corporation, and Lead Contractor for High Performance Computing for Manufacturing at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory. He also co-founded and served as Managing Director of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology's Fraunhofer Center for Sustainable Energy and showcased his success in implementing new technologies, notably through his $40M+ living laboratory project. His expertise spans industries including building materials, automotive, and renewable energy. As founder of ADL Ventures, he guides companies not only in upscaling and business development but also in applying for government grants that fuel innovation and growth. Watch Nolan's TedX Talk!

Jason Blenker is a cowboy and a visionary who finds the edge of the frontier a fascinating place to navigate and explore. The son of a carpenter and a home builder, he learned firsthand about building homes, businesses, and relationships from his parents whom he worked with in building a world-class, vertically integrated, offsite construction solutions company in the Midwest. After selling the business, he now guides others looking for solutions and is on the hunt for great innovation that will help address the housing affordability crisis we face today. He's on a mission to “Build Something Great®”. The first half of his career he spent focused on building great buildings – homes, apartments, commercial buildings, and off-site manufacturing where he found his true passion – building great teams and pushing innovation and automation. By focusing on culture, engaged leadership, and the team, he successfully grew a family business from 7 “employees” to over 300 “Team Members” and learned over 1 million wrong ways of doing things. He enjoys sharing stories of his bumps, bruises, and scars to help people find creative and inventive solutions to problems. When he's not working with a team, he enjoys spending time with the love of his life, Jenny, teaching and raising 3 crazy kids on a hobby farm, snocross racing, or at a rodeo. Not being much of a procrastinator, he does not believe in a bucket list that you’ll get around to one day, you should live each day to its fullest. He tries to give his free time and talent to various charities and has even been talked into riding a 2000# bull at a rodeo to help support the local food pantry (much to the dismay of his wife).

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