2014 Winner: The Smooth Operator

The most improved building across multiple sustainability categories achieved solely through improved operations and maintenance and/or retrocommissioning.

Who led the charge



Gary Sechler
Engineering Manager,     Winthrop Management


Gary Sechler innovates with Rebates at the US Steel Tower. In over 15 years of leading the Engineering team at the US Steel Tower, Gary Sechler has become known as a man of practicality, well-versed in management, utility purchasing, and a tenant liaison for engineering. Building on a Bachelor of Science in Industrial Engineering from North Carolina State University, Sechler developed his management skills through his work at several companies in Pittsburgh and North Carolina, and by staying active in the Building Owners and Managers Association of Pittsburgh.

Steel has a New Reputation in the Burgh, Pittsburgh, PA Commercial Office - 3,041,000 sq. ft.

Holding the title as the tallest skyscraper in Pittsburgh for 44 years, the US Steel Tower had long been known as an energy hog. Spurred on by energy efficiency rebates offered through Pennsylvania’s Act 129, Gary’s engineering team worked with consultants from Enerlogics to complete 11 lighting retrofit projects and 3 metering and controls projects one after another between 2010 and 2012. Rebates totaled over $700,000 for these energy efficiency projects, with ongoing savings from cutting energy consumption by nearly 30%. US Steel’s retrofits have demonstrated and driven the success of Act 129 and the Watt Choice rebate program in Pittsburgh.

Gary and his team reduced energy use at the US Steel Tower by over 11 million kiloWatt hours -- equivalent to lightning striking 53,000 times. 

Todd Johnson | Assistant Chief Engineer, Winthrop Management
Isaac Smith | Pittsburgh 2030 District Resource Specialist, Green Building Alliance


"The collective and holistic benefit these energy efficiency projects presented, not only to the building but also to all involved parties was truly amazing. This project was a quadruple win, advantageous for the building owners, tenants, utility company and most importantly the environment."

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