Paul Konove, founder
The interest and commitment I have to the environment started shortly after I earned my degree in engineering from the University of Rhode Island. My initial work involved taking bay water research samples in Rhode Island, and assisting in the development of a computer program to analyze the results. The work contributed information to support the theory that cleaning up the bay was critical for the important local clam harvesting businesses in the bay and assisted in showing that heated water that might be added to the bay by a planned (at that time) nuclear power plant would negatively impact the bay’s ecosystem.
In 1976 I started my career in construction as a carpenter in western Massachusetts. I was immediately drawn to the passive solar field that blossomed at that time. Upon moving to North Carolina in the late 1970’s, within a short period of time, I had the opportunity to build several solar designed homes and to be a founding member of the worker co-op design and construction firm Space Builders. About the same time, I co-founded the Solar Greenhouse Employment Project a tax-exempt foundation supported effort that educated and trained people throughout the Southeast in a variety of solar construction projects.
As founder of Carolina Country Builders in 1985, I wanted to continue the work I have been involved with since my first years in North Carolina, that is running a business that focused on building projects that utilized renewable energy and enabled me to continue teaching and training both the general public and construction professionals in environmentally appropriate building techniques. Fortunately, since Carolina Country Builders was established, I have been able to continue these activities around the state of North Carolina, including chairing the North Carolina Solar Energy Association (1986-87 – now the NC Sustainable Energy Association – NCSEA) and co-founding the NC Solar Center (established at NC State University). I have assisted in organizing numerous NCSEA solar and green building tours around the state of North Carolina, and presented in the triangle region green building seminars to tour attendees in 1998, and 2000.
In 2001 I developed and presented a two-day solar home design and construction seminar for consumers, architects and builders for the N.C. Solar Center. I have also had the opportunity to participate in the Sustainable Buildings Industry Council’s (SBIC) Green Building Guidelines Seminars as an instructor in numerous locations mostly in the eastern US including at the Sara Susanka Not So Big Show House at the 2005 International Builders Show in Orlando, Fla. In more recent years, I have participated on multiple levels with the High Performance Building Council of the Durham, Orange, and Chatham County Home Builders Association.
Within the last 10 years my buisness focus has been on designing and building both new homes and renovations within the Orange, Chatham, and Durham NC area, using up-to-date green building construction materials and methods.