Building  Owners  and  Managers  Association  International

Building Owners and Managers Association International

2016 Board of Governors Highlights

Board of Governors Highlights: BOMA Goes Interactive

By Jessica Bates

This year’s Board of Governors meeting at the 2016 BOMA International Conference & Expo was a little different from previous years. The nearly 300 members of BOMA leadership in attendance were able to give real-time feedback on BOMA’s goals and strategies with live polling through the BOMA 2016 conference mobile app. This new approach was designed to make the proceedings more interactive and allow the meeting to serve as a weathervane.

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William Carleton accepts a Lifetime Membership.

Attendees represented BOMA local associations from across the United States and the world—including delegates from far-flung BOMA China and BOMA Japan. Outgoing BOMA International Chair and Chief Elected Officer Kent Gibson, BOMA Fellow, kicked off the meeting, taking care of some items of business, including approving Lifetime Membership for William E. Carleton, BOMA Fellow, RPA, a longtime member of BOMA/Columbus. He then handed it off to newly elected 2016-2017 Chair and Chief Elected Officer Brian Harnetiaux and 2016-2017 Chair-Elect Rob Brierley. Harnetiaux and Brierley lead those in attendance through a series of polling questions designed to evaluate the effectiveness of BOMA International’s offerings and help steer the organization to best meet the needs of its members. Attendees were asked to rate a wide range of different initiatives and offerings based on how valuable they are to their local associations.

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2016-2017 Chair Brian Harnetiaux and 2016-2017 Chair-Elect Rob Brierley

BOMA International’s federal advocacy was the highest rated program for the crowd, with more than 80 percent describing it as “very valuable” or “valuable.” This strongly positive response may be reflective of BOMA’s long string of valuable legislative victories—including, most recently, the permanent extension of the 15-year depreciation on qualified leasehold improvements and a two-year extension of the energy efficiency tax deduction for commercial buildings.  

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Certain responses seemed to reflect shifts in the broader industry. BOMA International has developed a wide range of resources for the fast-growing industrial sector, including the Industrial Experience Exchange Report (Industrial EER) and the Industrial Real Estate education track at the annual conference. These industrial real estate initiatives polled well, with the majority (over 60 percent) of the audience describing them as valuable or very valuable to their local associations. Likewise, asset management resources and programming polled similarly well among those gathered.

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Representatives from top-performing local associations in The Home Depot membership rebate program.

The majority of those polled also considered BOMA’s member benefit program with The Home Depot, which provides members with a two percent annual rebate on purchases, to be quite valuable. That value was on full display later in the proceedings when BOMA International Senior Vice President Pat Areno and The Home Depot’s National Pro Manager Earl Madison shared the latest figures from the program. Since 2012, they reported, $6 million has been given back to BOMA members through rebates, and $125,000 has been shared with BOMA local associations through the revenue sharing program.  Areno and Madison handed out the awards for top performing BOMA local associations within the program. BOMA/Orange County took the top honors with $9.7 million in local sales.

Similarly, the crowd supported the collaboration between BOMA International and BOMI International. BOMA and BOMI debuted one such collaborative effort at the conference—an asset management certificate program that will be modified for future use in additional settings. BOMI International Chair Dave Fagone, RPA, gave a presentation to the Board of Governors, highlighting a number of recent accomplishments, including the new High-Performance Sustainable Building Program, which will be offered through BOMA local associations.

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Audience members submit their responses to the survey questions during Board of Governors.

In addition to ranking current BOMA initiatives, Harnetiaux and Brierley also asked the crowd to rate five key focuses that the executive committee had identified as priorities for the upcoming budget. The areas included increasing C-suite outreach, reimagining education offerings, reinforcing BOMA’s value proposition, creating an impactful communications plan and building BOMA’s capacity for research. Those polled indicated that all five should be included within the budget. Harnetiaux and Brierley concluded the polling with a lively interactive discussion with those in attendance on what priorities might be missing from the list and how BOMA International and local associations can continue to work together.

Following the budget discussion, BOMA Canada Chair Don Fairgrieve-Park gave his presentation on the work that his organization has been doing over the past year, particularly its recent global outreach. BOMA Canada and BOMA International signed a memorandum of understanding during the conference to encourage the global expansion of BOMA BEST®, BOMA Canada’s flagship environmental program.

Research Findings and Initiatives

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Dr. Fuller presents highlights from BOMA International’s latest economic impact report.

The meeting also featured the unveiling of BOMA International’s latest economic impact study, Where America Goes to Work: The Contributions of Office Building Operations to the Economy, 2016. (Read more about the report on pages 22 and 23.) Report author Stephen S. Fuller, Ph.D., Dwight Schar faculty chair and university professor and the senior advisor and director of Special Projects for the Center for Regional Analysis at George Mason University, presented key findings from the study that revealed the significant economic contributions from the commercial office industry that are often overlooked. Analysis showed that 10.5 billion square feet of commercial office space located within the markets served by BOMA International’s U.S. local associations generated $89.1 billion in operational expenditures in 2015 and contributed nearly $235 billion to the U.S. GDP. Additionally, for each dollar laid out in building operations expenditures, the U.S. economy gained $2.64 and U.S. workers realized an increase of $0.76 in personal earnings.

The importance of this report and other research work was further underscored in a presentation by Sheldon Oppermann, Esq., chair of the BOMA International Research Committee. Oppermann discussed the accomplishments of the committee since it was formed just last fall, including releasing a white paper on workplace transformation and an accompanying checklist for industry professionals. To help guide the committee’s efforts going forward, Oppermann polled the crowd using the conference mobile app on a variety of possible research topics for the committee to explore.

The crowd was particularly interested in further research into how densification impacts building maintenance needs and property management issues, with over 80 percent indicating interest or high interest in the issue. The majority of respondents also were interested in learning more about the effects of densification on worker productivity and health and wellness. Branching out from densification, the audience was strongly interested in having the research committee explore how the Internet of Things and on-demand technologies in the office is impacting commercial real estate.

The Business of BOMA

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New officers and members of the Executive Committee are sworn in.

BOMA International Nominating Committee Chair Angelo Grima of BOMA/New York announced the slate of 2016-2017 BOMA International officers:

  • Chair and Chief Elected Officer: Brian M. Harnetiaux, Senior Vice President, Asset Management, McCarthy Cook, BOMA/Orange County
  • Chair-Elect: Robert M. Brierley, BOMA Fellow, Senior Vice President, Real Estate Management Services, Colliers International, BOMA/Boston
  • Vice Chair: Brian D. Cappelli, RPA, Vice President, Forest City Realty Trust, BOMA/Greater Cleveland
  • Secretary/Treasurer: Completing his second two-year term, Daniel W. Chancey, RPA, Senior Vice President of Asset Management, Commercial Advisors Asset Services, LLC, BOMA/Memphis

He also revealed the 2016-2018 Executive Committee members:

  • William Cates, National Accounts Team Leader at Kimberly-Clark Professional* (Associate Member)
  • Shelby J. Christensen, Senior Vice President of Real Estate Operations, Liberty Property Trust, BOMA/Philadelphia (Second term)
  • Randal
  • Froebelius, P.Eng., President and General Manager at Equity ICI Real Estate Services Inc., BOMA/Toronto
  • Richard Kenwood, CRX, CPM, CSM, RPA, FMA, General Manager at Madison Marquette, BOMA/Philadelphia
  • William F. Moebius, BOMA Fellow, RPA, CPM, CCIM, LEED AP, Senior Vice President and Regional Director of Property Management and Director of Sustainability, Peloton Commercial Real Estate, BOMA/Dallas
  • Coleen Spratt, General Manager at CommonWealth Partners, BOMA/Seattle-King County (Second term)

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Kent Gibson looks on as Keith Major accepts the Chair’s Award.

Following the swearing in of these new BOMA leaders, BOMA International’s outgoing chair delivered closing remarks. Kent Gibson thanked everyone who helped to make his year as chair productive and rewarding.  This included Keith Major of BOMA/Greater Toronto, who Gibson presented with a Chair’s Award for his wise counsel as a member of the Executive Committee and efforts in strengthening the relationship between BOMA International and BOMA Canada.  Gibson also highlighted how BOMA is ideally suited to tackle the challenges of a rapidly changing marketplace, with its wealth of resources and programs.​​