The Snug Planet team
Who We Are
The Snug team is a small, highly-trained group of home performance professionals. We focus on customer satisfaction and keeping our staff trained, certified and educated on the latest in home performance. We are a locally-owned business that depends on your good word for our next job.
After receiving a degree in Biology from Harvard University, Jon earned a PhD from UNC Chapel Hill in Landscape Ecology. Following years of conducting ecological research, he realized using his scientific background to improve building efficiency would be the most direct way to mitigate the impacts of climate change. Jon left the field of ecology and moved to Ithaca with a singular goal. He started Snug Planet in 2006, a contracting company whose mission is to “reduce building energy use in ways that make sense for people and the Planet.” Jon holds multiple certifications from the Building Performance Institute and has published numerous articles on energy effieciency and green building.
For over ten years, Snug Planet has transformed nearly one thousand homes and commercial buildings to be more comfortable. By air sealing, insulating and installing high-efficiency heating systems, Snug Planet is saving Tompkins County residents thousands of dollars on fuel and electricity, dollars that remain in our local community. Snug Planet uses the most environmentally-friendly products available and follows the highest building science practices.
Elisabeth graduated from Wake Forest University with a Bachelor’s Degree Early Childhood Education. She was the director of education at-a-hands on inquiry based science center. Elisabeth spent a decade in the classroom and 15 years homeschooling. Essentially, she is an educator wherever she goes and approaches each day with a sense of playfulness and positivity from a place of “how can we be better and learn more”.
Maria is Snug Planet’s secret weapon for cutting through NYSERDA’s red tape. She utilizes her organizational skills and meticulousness honed from her Masters in Elementary Education, Bachelor’s in Math, and years of teaching and homeschooling to help people navigate the NYSERDA paperwork process to get the most financial assistance available to them. Maria also brings an educator’s care to her process of helping customers throughout their whole Snug experience. She has a magical approach, perhaps gleaned from her love of Harry Potter.
Myron can build, fix, grow, install, and operate anything... he is truly a master of all trades. Raised in DeRuyter, NY, he grew up dairy farming and developed an affinity for the environment at a young age. So he studied Environmental Science, became a Naturalist, and honed his extensive experience with graze dairy farming, commercial landscaping & construction. Today he brings to Snug fantastic leadership skills as well as a wealth of knowledge and experience in carpentry, plumbing, green building and insulation.
Sarah received a degree in Environmental Science from Ithaca College and fell in love with Ithaca and energy conservation. She has been trained and certified as a Building Analyst through the Building Performance Institute and was also trained and certified as a Home Comfort & Energy Conservation specialist through Dr. Energy Saver. She began her path to being a Building Analyst on the jobsite, working directly with the crew, so that she could develop a holistic approach to the science of each project. Sarah has conducted hundreds of energy audits in the last three years… probably in your neighborhood! She finds it most gratifying to witness her customers not only be satisfied, but astounded at the level of improvement in their homes.
Born in Burma, Wailin came to the US when he was 16. His first stop was Iowa, but that only lasted 3 months because in Ithaca, he found a strong Asian community and the BOCES carpentry program. He has studied European masonry techniques in the Netherlands, speaks three languages (Burmese, Thai and English), likes to work on homes, and is saving up to go back home to Burma, build a general store, and live above it.
Meredith was raised in Upstate New York and has degrees in both Sociology and Fine Woodworking. After years of traveling around the country building furniture and constructing houses with AmeriCorps, she has returned to the Ithaca area and is raising her family and bees! Meredith loves working with her hands, and Snug is so fortunate to have her skills be put to such good use in homes around our community. Plus, she’s the champion of fitting into small crawlspaces!
Daniel graduated from Universal Technical Institute with a degree in Basic Automotive. Another Snug that comes from a line of local farmers, he was raised on the family farm and grew up around animals. As a father of two young children, he's happy to be making a daily difference for the future of our planet and enjoys making homes more snug for other families.
Susan, born and raised in the Finger Lakes, is happy to be able to make an environmental impact in her own backyard. She has a BS in Science communication from Cornell and a Masters in environmental Education from NYU. Susan is a trained Energy Educator who enjoys helping homeowners make small changes that provide big energy savings in their homes. She also helps the Snug office run like clockwork thanks to her tech savviness and graphic design skills.
Maya was born in the first passive solar-heated home on Long Island, built by her grandfather. This instilled in her a life-long respect for conservation and innovation. After achieving a B.A. in Psychology from UC Santa Cruz, she wore many hats before moving to Trumansburg to raise her children close to nature. She is a published author and has written two books along with numerous articles for magazines focusing on creating with rescued materials. She brings this passion for reuse to her position thoughtfully sourcing materials for Snug.
Rusty is our go to guy for installing and maintaining water heaters and heat pump mini-splits. He grew up 10 miles from the Arch in St. Louis and worked there in the automotive industry until 5 years ago, when left city life for the country. Rusty relocated to the Fingerlakes at Pine Meadow Angus Farm, where he raises 100% grass fed beef in his (not so) spare time. Snug Planet is lucky to have him also keeping our vehicles running smoothly and our shop ship shape.
James "Sebby" Friedborn
James, also fondly referred to as Sebby, grew up right here in Ithaca. While studying Carpentry at Alfred State College, he’d often join our crew during summers. Once he graduated, Snug Planet was fortunate to have him come on board full time. Now our customers can reap the benefits of his skills and sharp eye all year round. Bonus: Sebby’s smile is contagious and his ability to work in hot places (think attics in the July) is amazing!