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Bio - Academic

Russell Richman has deep roots in the Department of Civil Engineering at the University of Toronto. Russell started his academic career in the prestigious Engineering Science option in the Faculty of Applied Science and Engineering at U of T in 1995.

After being wowed by Professor M.P. Collins in a first year civil engineering course, Russell followed his calling and transfered into the Department of Civil Engineering. His dreams of becoming a structural engineer were shattered in his third year of studies upon taking a little known course entitled "Building Science", delivered by Professor Kim Pressnail. Upon completing this course, Russell found his true passion - Building Science.

Russell spent the summer between third and fourth year initiating his bachelor's thesis under the supervision of Professor Pressnail. His thesis focussed on an innovative way to manipulate the indoor environment of house museums in order to minimize deterioration of both the building envelope and the artifacts within it.

Following completion of his undergraduate degree in Civil Engineering (1999), Russell decided to continue his studies under the supervision of Professor Pressnail during his masters. His masters thesis focussed on air flow in and through buildings continuing the work of well known building scientist Joe Lstiburek (

Following his four year stint as a consulting engineer at Yolles Partnership, Russell started his doctoral studies in 2003, again in the Department of Civil Engineering and again under the supervision of Professor Pressnail. Russell's work documented the creation and validation of a near passive solar air collecting curtain wall system.

During the 4.5 years taken to attain his Ph.D., Russell studied a variety of building science themes relating to sustainable and low-energy buildings. By the end of his studies, Russell gathered expertise in these areas with a unique ability to bridge academic gaps with practical experience. In addition to his Ph.D. dissertation, Russell was co-creator of the Build Better Now and Gemini House initiatives.

For more detailed information on Russell's academic history, PDF fileplease refer to his current CV. (update!!!)