Dear GTC IFMA members,

I love this time of year.  It brings back good memories. My past year’s reflections include many happy ones associated with GTC IFMA. There’s an element of pride in those memories as well.

We amped up our philanthropic events; a better-than-ever March Madness contest, a gourmet meal at Ronald McDonald House (with an ice cream truck!), and a “Yappy Hour” to benefit the SPCA. We’ll wrap up the year with our annual Toys-for-Tots drive.  I’m humbled by the generosity of our members and the coordination efforts of our Community Outreach Committee, co-chaired by Kellie Renzi and Ed Boyle, and mentored by Mark Cimerro.

We’ve had several great speakers at our luncheon meetings. What pleases me most is that the speaker recommendations have come directly from our membership.  It tells me that indeed, we are “extremely engaged” and thinking about how we can further the profession of Facility Management.  It takes a village (Networking & Events, Programs, and Membership) to coordinate meaningful programs and tours.  Jeremy Logue, Tyler Holmes, Tyner Tew, and Trisha DeMilia have done a great job.

Educational pursuits?  We’ve got it covered…GTC sponsored two educational sessions, enabling members to earn credit toward their FMP designation.  Past President and IFMA Fellow, Buck Fisher taught the classes, coordinated by Randal Goller and Robert Sunukjian (both serve on our Professional Development Committee).  This committee also provided an increased number of scholarships to WWP, Facility Fusion, and Advocacy Day this year.

We work to educate more than just our current members.  With this year’s proceeds from the Michael Bradley Memorial IFMA Foundation Golf Tournament, we provided a scholarship for Devin Shackleford to pursue his Construction Management degree at Kennesaw State.  The golf tournament is one of our best-attended events of the year; many thanks to Todd Taintor and Buck Fisher for leading the charge.

A special highlight for this year was World Workplace in Charlotte.  Connie Drake, Laura Shaw and a host of others contributed many hours of work and coordination to help make this event the huge success that it was for The Carolinas.

None of this could happen without the support of our sponsors…the funding that they provide has helped us accomplish these achievements.  Please think of them as your “go to” resources as you specify your 2019 projects.

I’d like to especially thank our current board; Haley Hough, Angel Bond, Justin Barber, and Robert Sunukjian.  I’m grateful for their leadership (often behind-the-scenes) and efforts to make our chapter a great one!  And speaking of behind-the-scenes, another hearty thank you goes out to our administrative staff, Candi McDowell and Tamara Tinker.  Their hard work allows the board to concentrate on our Facility Management-related mission.

We’ve accomplished so much and there’s much more to come. We recently signed a contract for a new luncheon meeting location-or should I say “new/old”?!  Beginning in January 2019, we’re moving back to PNC Area for our meetings…both parties are very excited to be partnering with each other again. We’ve lined up several tours, engaged several luncheon speakers, and are planning another Professionals Only presentation.  We’re going to have another great year!  Happy Holidays!

Cris Karasek
President 2018-2019