About Us


Tom Darden

Executive Director

Tom Darden is the Executive Director of the Make It Right Foundation, the organization founded by actor Brad Pitt to build 150 affordable, green, high design homes in New Orleans’ Lower 9th Ward, a neighborhood devastated by Hurricane Katrina.  Darden oversees a staff of 33 full-time employees including engineers, builders, landscape architects, homeownership counselors and community organizers.  Darden has worked with the Make It Right Board to raise over $27 million from more than 31,000 donors, managed the design process with 21 architectural firms and completed thirteen LEED Platinum homes.  Under Darden’s leadership, the Make It Right neighborhood has become the largest, greenest development of single family LEED Platinum homes in America, according to the US Green Building Council.  Darden was recently named Louisiana’s 2009 Young Entrepreneur of the Year by the Small Business Administration. 

As Make It Right’s first volunteer in December of 2006, Darden conducted initial due diligence efforts on the feasibility of Pitt’s concept for building green, affordable housing on a large scale in the Lower 9th Ward of New Orleans. Darden’s report evolved into the strategic plan for Make It Right.  Prior to joining Make It Right, Darden worked as a development consultant in Washington, D.C., evaluating former manufacturing and mining sites in the D.C. metropolitan market, including the site where the largest dinosaur bone unearthed on the east coast of North America was discovered. Darden’s efforts made it possible to reclaim the mine and preserve the archeologically significant site.  In addition, Darden helped establish a start-up telecommunications company and founded Arbor Equity, a real estate firm in Raleigh, N.C. committed to sustainable development.

Darden received a B.A. with Honors from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

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Graft Atelier Hitoshi Eskew
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Thumbnail Architecture in Times of Need: Make It Right Rebuilding New Orleans‚ Lower Ninth Ward
The first book to document the progress of the Make It Right Foundation‚ efforts to rebuild in New Orleans‚ Lower 9th Ward after Hurricane Katrina is now available. Read More
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