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Media Advisory
For Immediate Release:
11/14/2012 12:00 AM
Susan Hines
Director, Public Relations and Information
2012 Design-Build Conference and Expo Highlights Team-Wide Integration on Projects

Nearly 1,700 owners and A/E/C professionals attend conference devoted to all aspects of design-build project delivery.

The Design-Build Institute of America, the only organization that defines, teaches and promotes best practices in design-build project delivery, hosted another near record-breaking Design-Build Conference and Expo in New Orleans, La. Themed Design-Build Unmasked: Rebuilding Through Integration, the meeting not only recognized how far the city has come since Hurricanes Rita and Katrina devastated the city but also acknowledged the role design-build project delivery has played in the rebuilding effort, including the Storm Surge Barrier Protection project that protected New Orleans from Isaac’s steady deluge just a few months ago.

In addition to continuing education sessions on design-build best practices and lessons learned, attendees wandered a packed expo hall and attended a series of networking events designed to broaden the reach of owners and design and construction practitioners.

Integration was also a major theme of the Annual Members and Credential Holders Luncheon, which took place prior to the Opening Keynote address on Wednesday, November 7. This meeting of over 500 DBIA members and DBIA™ credential holders provided an opportunity for DBIA leadership to unveil the organization’s 2013-2015 Strategic Direction and receive feedback from a diverse group of members representing owners, architects, engineers, general and specialty contractors, attorneys, legal professionals, academia and students. (Full details of the 2013-2015 DBIA Strategic Direction are available on this website.)

Describing the process of developing the strategic goals and plan, 2012 DBIA Board Chair Robert Nartonis, Senior Vice President, M.A. Mortenson Company, noted that the board had engaged the regions as well as various design-build thoughts leaders in the process of refining DBIA’s to the next several years. “In all conversations, one fundamental truth surfaced again and again,” he observed. “The belief that — even in the midst of emerging technologies and practices — design-build remains the original and optimal integrated project delivery method. This belief served as the foundation for DBIA’s vision, mission and values and led us to the development of three-year strategic goals that will define us as a high performance organization.”

Members and credential holders were asked to review the strategic direction in light of their own position within the organization and the industry at large. They discussed the plan over lunch and provided both written and oral feedback to the Board of Directors that will be used to validate the direction and, Nartonis added, will allow the board to “adjust [its] flight plan accordingly.

In her State of the Association address, DBIA Executive Director and CEO Lisa Washington, CAE, reviewed statistics showing the rapid expansion of design-build over the last several years. Despite the slow growth of the national economy, design-build has continued to expand. Key to that expansion is DBIA’s emphasis on education in best practices for practitioners and owners. “We are helping owners understand that design-build is about the ‘people’ as much as the ‘process,’” she told the audience. “Ordinary people can do extraordinary things when teamwork and collaboration exists, and when contracts are written to promote positive behavior.”
Washington made clear that achieving its aggressive strategic goals requires the organization to more appropriately target resources, reshape programs and services and transform other critical aspects of DBIA operations. “We are asking for your help as we restructure our committees to align with our strategic goals,” she noted, directing attention to DBIA’s Call for Industry Experts, issued just prior to the conference. DBIA members can express interest through November 26 via the online application process on this site.

Members also approved the 2013 Board of Directors. Over the course of 2013, the Board will be chaired by Barbara Wagner, LEED AP, Senior Vice President, Clark Construction Western Region. Jim Whitaker, AIA, DBIA, Principal and Senior Vice President, HKS, will serve as Vice Chair and, taking on the role of Treasurer, is Peter Kinsley, DBIA, Vice President and Water Division Leader, Haskell. The meeting concluded with DBIA credential holders approving the appointment of Jeffrey L. Gagne, PE, DBIA, Vice President, STV, and current Vice Chair of the Design-Build Certification Board, to replace Certification Board Chair David Bloxom, DBIA, President, Speed Fab-Crete Corporation in 2013.