Builders Without Borders Conference, 1999

bwbblackrange2.jpg (7197 bytes) On the weekend of Dec. 3-6, 1999 a group of natural builders met at the Blackrange Lodge in Kingston, New Mexico, hosted by Catherine Waneck, to begin the process of creating a new organization called Builders Without Borders. Its aim is to reach out to others around the world and work together to create a sustainable future. For a complete report on all the exciting things that happened during the conference and its ongoing activities, please go to

Below are photos of the participants, including short audioclips of who they are and what they do.
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Catherine Wanek, Kingston, New Mexico, is fascinated with building with straw bales, and has produced several videos on the subject. She also publishes The Last Straw newsletter which comes out quarterly. Her e-mail address is

About the Building Without Borders Conference
How Catherine got started with straw bales
About Blackrange Lodge

bwbsteve.jpg (5043 bytes) Steve MacDonald from Gila, New Mexico, has built a dozen homes with straw bales and has co-authored the book Build It With Bales. He also worked on a straw bale project in Mongolia. His e-mail address is


Steve on his work in Mongolia

bwbjoe.jpg (5092 bytes) Joe Kennedy from Truth or Consequences, New Mexico, is a natural building architect and has given conferences around the world. His e-mail address is

He is now teaching (2002) at New College of California's EcoDwelling Program in Santa Rosa. It is a three-semester program. For more information go to


Joe on his work in Africa

bwbbob.jpg (4653 bytes) Bob Bolles is a co-director of Sustainability International based in San Diego, California. He is a design and building consultant. His e-mail address is


Bob on what he likes to do

bwbalfred.jpg (4834 bytes) Alfred von Bachmayr from Santa Fe, New Mexico, is an architect and has been involved in natural building since the mid-70s. He also worked on natural building projects in Fiji. His e-mail address is


Alfred on his work in Fiji

bwbjeff.jpg (4688 bytes) Jeff Ruppert from Boulder, Colorado is a civil engineer fascinated with natural building and has been designing and building straw bale houses for the past four years. His e-mail address is


bwbsarah.jpg (4895 bytes) Sarah Francis from Boulder, Colorado is an interior designer using natural building materials. Her e-mail address is



bwblucialuciano.jpg (5365 bytes) Lucia Battegazzore and Luciano Davyt are from Montevideo, Uruguay and work with the Ecovillage Network of the Americas.  Their e-mail address is

Lucia on what she wants to do in Uruguay

Luciano on an ecovillage in Uruguay

bwbrobert.jpg (5436 bytes) Robert Andrews from Pueblo, Colorado is a straw bale house designer. His website has designs for 50 straw bale houses.

His e-mail address is


bwbderek.jpg (4884 bytes) Derek Roth works in the Language Learning Center of the University of New Mexico in Albuquerque and devotes his energy to exploring ways to conserve our precious resources.


Derek on retrofitting existing structures

Other Participants

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