BOMA/Chicago Announces Winners of Inaugural Gold Circle Awards and 'The Office Building of the Year' (TOBY) Awards

Jan 29, 2010, 11:33 ET from Building Owners and Managers Association of Chicago

CHICAGO, Jan. 29 /PRNewswire/ -- The Building Owners and Managers Association of Chicago (BOMA/Chicago) announced the winners of its first-ever Gold Circle Awards and its annual "The Office Building of the Year" (TOBY) Awards last night at the BOMA/Chicago Gold Circle Awards Gala held at the Palmer House Hilton.

The Gold Circle Awards were created to honor individual excellence within Chicago's commercial real estate community in six categories, including Property Management Professional of the Year, Building Engineer of the Year, Security Professional of the Year, Emerging Leader of the Year, Affiliate Member of the Year and the Board of Directors Award.

Nominated by an executive within their organization, applicants were required to complete an extensive award application and submit two letters of recommendation. The finalists were evaluated by a panel of local real estate leaders based on a wide range of criteria including the applicants' professional accomplishments, positive impact on Chicago's commercial real estate community and involvement in BOMA/Chicago. The awards were extremely competitive, with more than thirty applications received in the Gold Circle Award's first year.

The 2010 Gold Circle Award winners include:

  • Property Management Professional of the Year: Laura Bossert, general manager of 737 North Michigan, was nominated by Katherine Scott of U.S. Equities Realty for the renovation of 737 North Michigan's exterior entrance and lobby. The renovations were the central components of the building's successful repositioning campaign. The Property Management Professional of the Year Award recognizes excellence in property management for professionals charged with managing the day-to-day operations and maintenance of BOMA/Chicago member buildings.
  • Building Engineer of the Year: Matt McManus, chief engineer at University Center, located at 525 South State Street, was nominated by Bill Vail of U.S. Equities Student Housing for spearheading a variety of sustainability initiatives, including utilizing low-VOC paint and recycled carpeting throughout the building. McManus also upgraded University Center's lighting system with motion sensors to increase the overall energy efficiency of the building. The Building Engineer of the Year Award honors operational excellence of engineering professionals overseeing the systems and infrastructure of Chicago's commercial buildings.
  • Security Professional of the Year: Keith Kambic, director of security at Willis Tower, was honored for overseeing a dramatic overhaul of security and life safety at the building. Kambic's security program reduced annual operating costs by more than $1.5 million dollars through staff reductions and the implementation of advanced technology and procedures. Kambic was nominated by Dean Johnson of U.S. Equities Realty for the Security Professional of the Year Award, which recognizes excellence in building security management.
  • Emerging Leader of the Year: Mason Taylor, assistant general manager of 353 North Clark, was named Emerging Leader of the Year, an award recognizing leadership achievement by BOMA/Chicago's building and affiliate members with less than five years of experience in the commercial real estate industry. Taylor was nominated by Lori Olson of Jones Lang LaSalle for his success recruiting sponsors of the Emerging Leaders Committee and its members. During the past year, Taylor's efforts have secured more than $10,000 in contributions to support BOMA/Chicago's Emerging Leaders.
  • Affiliate Member of the Year: Bobby Graham of Facility Solutions Group was recognized for his exemplary service to BOMA/Chicago as an active affiliate member. Graham was nominated by Robert Six of Zeller Realty for his efforts to promote affiliate members as a valuable resource to BOMA/Chicago building members.
  • Board of Directors Award: Janice Goldsmith, senior vice president of Zeller Realty Group, was honored with the Board of Directors Award for her extraordinary contributions to BOMA/Chicago and its members through her long-term service as the vice chair of the Codes Committee. Goldsmith led BOMA/Chicago's efforts to update elevator safety and inspection protocols for the City of Chicago and spearheaded the development of new self-certification processes for routine building inspections.

"BOMA/Chicago's members and member buildings continue to set the highest standards of achievement for the regional and national commercial real estate community," said Michael Cornicelli, executive vice president of BOMA/Chicago. "These individuals and property management teams comprise the best-of-the-best in our industry, and we are grateful for their leadership and unwavering commitment to excellence."

BOMA/Chicago also honored local TOBY winners for excellence in office building management and sustainability initiatives based on building size and facility type. The following buildings were recognized in eight respective categories for their achievements:

  • 100,000 – 249,000 Square Feet Category: 20 North Michigan, managed by U.S. Equities Realty and owned by 12 North Venture, LLC.
  • 250,000 – 499,000 Square Feet Category: 550 West Washington, managed by Jones Lang LaSalle and owned by Beacon Capital Partners.
  • 500,000 – One Million Square Feet Category: 191 West Wacker, managed by Manulife Financial and owned by John Hancock Life Insurance Company.
  • Over One Million Square Feet Category: The Aon Center, managed by Jones Lang LaSalle and owned by Piedmont Office Realty Trust.
  • Government Building Category: The Ralph H. Metcalfe Federal Building, located at 77 West Jackson Boulevard. The building is owned and managed by the General Services Administration.
  • Renovated Building Category: 11 South LaSalle, managed by CB Richard Ellis, Inc. and owned by Prime LaSalle/Madison Partners, LLC.
  • Earth Award  Category: 350 West Mart Center, managed by Merchandise Mart Properties, Inc. and owned by Vornado Realty Trust.
  • Historical Building Category: 680 North Lake Shore, managed and owned by Golub Realty Services, LLC.

TOBY Award nominees were required to submit a detailed application and undergo an extensive building inspection process by a team of TOBY judges. In addition, the building's management team was interviewed by a judging panel regarding its tenant relations programs, work order systems, emergency preparedness and security standards, budgeting, recordkeeping and staff experience and training.  

The Chicago TOBY Award winners will compete in the north central regional TOBY competition, which includes local TOBY winners from Illinois, Michigan, Indiana, Ohio and Kentucky. Regional competition winners will qualify to compete in the international TOBY awards later this year, considered by many in the industry to be one of the highest honors the commercial real estate industry can bestow.

About BOMA/Chicago

Now in its 107th year and the oldest BOMA Association in the world, BOMA/Chicago represents the interests of the people and companies that own, operate, manage and service Chicago's commercial buildings. BOMA/Chicago members make up 81 percent of downtown's total rentable building area and nearly 90 percent of rentable space in Class A buildings downtown. These valuable assets are the core of one of the world's greatest business districts. By advocating the interests of the owners of these valuable assets, BOMA/Chicago also supports the businesses that are housed in them--businesses that require quality office space and quality service.


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SOURCE Building Owners and Managers Association of Chicago