GTECHer Spotlight: Brian Verdi
By: Sara Innamorato
Get to know…Brian Verdi
Role at GTECH: Research Intern for Knots on Lots
Alma Mater: Washington and Jefferson College – Cell/Molecular Biology
Current Education Endeavor: part-time Duquesne University student in the Environmental Science and Management Master’s Program
Favorite Burrito Topping: Guacamole
I started volunteering with GTECH because of the many outstanding projects they help accomplish in Pittsburgh. I plan to provide whatever assistance I can to help this organization continues to enhance and strengthen the local community.
While working full time as a microbiologist in Uptown and attending classes for his master’s program at Duquesne – Brian still finds time to continue to volunteer with GTECH where he uses his molecular biology background for good. Not only has he helped us conduct research for our Healthy Homes Incentive Program to explore how energy efficiency is linked to human health, but also he is an avid home brewer who donates his brews for charity events.
Presently Brian works with GTECH on the Knots of Lots project, for which he has written clear and informative material that will explain why knotweed is a problem, what innovative methods GTECH wishes to use and how the local community can help.
Last time he was in our office, he had the opportunity to apply some of his research and try his hand at making biochar out of his well-researched invasive. Right now the project is in its experimental phase, but Brian wants to monitor the the progress and see the results of this initial trial – specially the effect it can have on soil on vacant lots.
Mostly, he is looking forward to educating more people in Pittsburgh on the benefits of biochar for planting, gardening and soil health. Although he won’t be using it in any of his home brews, Brian does believe if more people knew about the many benefits of biochar it would become a more widely used product.
Connect with Brian