Boston, MA The New England Chapter of CoreNet Global has named the 2020-2021 winners of its annual Awards of Excellence, representing the best of the Boston region in corporate real estate leadership. The project winners include projects over the last two years to account for the postponed awards program in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Winners will be formally presented with their awards at the organization’s return to a live, in-person Awards of Excellence Gala on October 28th, at the Westin Boston Seaport District.
Leadership Award Winners
Global Corporate End User Leadership: Kurt Ochalla, Biogen head of global real estate
Ochalla is a dynamic real estate leader for one of the world’s premier life science companies, overseeing Biogen’s real estate function covering 4.5 million s/f in over 40 countries. With a degree in civil and environmental engineering, an MBA in real estate finance, a 24-year career in the United States Army Reserves as Lieutenant Colonel plus an MCR and SLCRE from CoreNet Global and 25 years of diverse global real estate industry expertise, Ochalla is tailor made for the global stage. He has led real estate portfolios for boutique firms as well as such global powerhouses as Deloitte, Philips, Trip Advisor, and Nuance Communications. Despite his significant Biogen obligations and demanding global role, Ochalla finds time to serve his local community, including recently on the Newton Needham Regional chamber of commerce and Needham board of assessors. He also leads major fundraising for the charity America’s VetDogs, something that combines his passion for dogs and his fellow military service men and women.
Americas Corporate End User Leadership: Rich Bettina, senior director of leasing, Fresenius Medical Care North America
As Fresenius’ senior director of leasing for North America since 2018, Bettina is responsible for over 3,000 clinic and office sites and for negotiating 380 lease transactions annually. He manages 20 employees who direct and manage office lease renewals, site consolidations and all aspects of dispositions throughout North America. Bettina works directly with eight general managers and 40 regional vice presidents to cover over 30 million s/f across 3,500 locations. Executive leadership relies on Bettina to not only manage costs and align with business goals but also scale for growth, improve processes, develop integrated teams, and drive new initiatives successfully. Bettina graduated from Northeastern University and holds an MBA in strategic business management from Pace University. An active member of CoreNet New England, he serves on the board of directors and as a real advantage committee member and liaison to the board.
Americas Service Provider Leadership: Christopher Petryshin, partner and managing director, VVA Project & Cost Managers
Petryshin serves as the managing director for VVA’s New England region, in addition to providing oversight for the company’s national offices and strategic accounts. With over 25 years in the industry, Petryshin’s team-oriented approach and broad range of managerial, creative and technical talents help clients maximize the value of their project management partnership and troubleshoot operational and construction issues associated with complex relocation and construction projects. His key competencies include strategic planning, capital and project budgeting, scheduling, implementation, cost control, relationship management and international operations, culminating in millions of square feet and billions of dollars in project value for sectors including law firms, airlines, financial institutions, tech companies, product manufacturing companies, publishing companies and academia. Outside of work, Petryshin is also very active in his community on several boards aimed at providing mentorship to underprivileged and at-risk youth. He translates that same spirit of mentorship to his work in CoreNet to develop the chapter’s University Relations and Young Leader Development Programs.
Young Leader Award: Kristin Enright, manager, real estate and construction at Thermo Fisher Scientific
Enright is a leader and trusted partner who consistently delivers results. In her role at Thermo Fisher Scientific, she oversees diverse transactions for a large and complex portfolio while balancing the need to support mergers and acquisitions activity, construction and other initiatives as needed, such as authoring a comprehensive digital CRE playbook. As an innovative thinker, Enright engages cross-functional teams, benchmarks with her peers, and stays connected to vendors and partners to understand industry trends, including through her active participation in CoreNet New England. Enright is also involved in her community, helping collect donations for the Boys and Girls Clubs of Boston, running marathons for charity and other charitable efforts both at Thermo Fisher and in her personal life.
Volunteer Hall of Fame: Aurora Cammarata, director of business development and marketing, Trapani + Associates Architects
Cammarata is a real estate veteran with years of experience developing new client relationships and project opportunities for architectural, engineering, construction and project management firms with a mission to create and maintain positive long-term business relationships. A former member of the board of directors of the CoreNet Global New England Chapter, she led efforts to recreate the Awards of Excellence Gala for more than 10 years. She continues to represent the chapter on the Eastern Regional Symposium Executive Committee after 10 years and is a regular participant in the chapter’s University Initiative. She also leads the CREST Internship relationship through her participation in the Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Committee. Aurora has always taken an interest in developing young professionals. In addition to her CoreNet involvement, Cammarata is a founding advisor of WELL, Women’s Exchange for Leadership and Living. She is a frequent speaker at industry events on networking, business development, the consultative sales process and authentic leadership.
2020 Best Workplace Award Winners
Best New Small Workplace: Pipefitters Local 537 (submitted by SGA)
Pipefitters Local 537 in Dorchester, Mass. have been proudly providing world-class training for their members since their founding in 1911. The pipefitting, steamfitting and refrigeration craft have evolved as technology has advanced, but their 1950s building was hindering their capability to serve their member’s current training needs. Pipefitter’s vision was to create a 100-year state-of-the-art training facility for their union members, which incorporated the latest technology as well as the flexibility to evolve with the times as their profession is ever progressing. The new building provides ample training space, brings all departments under one roof, and engages with the local community by strategically placing the welding shop along the glass façade at the front sidewalk and adding large-scale graphics and branding in the lobby. The many specialty spaces support their equipment, training, and classroom requirements, including an 8,000 s/f welding workshop complete with classrooms and high-tech lab spaces. The multi-use building also features an auditorium to accommodate over 500 union members.
Best New Large Workplace: Akamai Technologies Global Headquarters (submitted by Sasaki Associates)
The new global headquarters for Akamai aimed at transforming the company at several levels, including bringing together six different locations under one roof to reduce square footage, encourage collaboration and better connect HQ employees to Akamai’s global workforce. The WELL certified workplace reimagined the open office concept to better separate collaborative spaces from the heads-down areas staff need for focus. The space also helps the company connect to its clients and to the surrounding neighborhood by creating a visitor experience and making a striking mark as a brand on the physical landscape.
2021 Best Workplace Award Winners
Best New Small Workplace: Timberland (submitted by IA Interior Architects, JLL & Timberline Construction)
Iconic outdoor lifestyle brand Timberland reinvigorated its global headquarters in Stratham, N.H. with a nature-focused renovation of its 20,000 s/f Central Plaza amenity center. The environmental transformation aligns with Timberland’s purpose and creative vision, creating a collaborative, energetic and progressive environment that exemplifies the culture of Timberland. The new space supports Timberland’s commitment to creating a net positive environmental impact by 2030, incorporating a number of wellness and sustainable philosophies. In addition, the project furthers Timberland’s mission of building an inclusive workspace, investing in design education to help manifest future thinking relative to product designs, while supporting communities and people of color. By updating and creating a more welcoming, collaborative environment, Timberland achieves multiple overarching goals of their company’s mission.
Best New Large Workplace: Boston Dynamics (submitted by J. Calnan & Associates)
The main objective of building a new corporate headquarters and test lab facility for Boston Dynamics was to support the world-renowned robotics engineering firm’s rapidly growing engineering, research and development, and customer support teams while not losing sight of what’s at the core of their culture – collaboration, wellness and connectivity. The 180,000 s/f facility provides physical activity opportunities, views to the outdoors, and daylighting throughout the entire workplace. Spanning three levels, the “building within a building” retained 96% of the interior building structure, contributing to reductions in demolition and construction waste, energy use, greenhouse gas emissions, and the environmental impact associated with the use of new construction materials. With an innovative mix of fabrication, engineering, test labs, demonstration areas, office and meeting spaces, kitchens, a fitness room, mother’s and quiet rooms, and a multifunctional town hall at its center, the new headquarters remains true to Boston Dynamics’ values of interconnectivity and openness.
Best New Workplace Outside of New England: National Grid Hanson (Submitted by IA Interior Architects)
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As a utility and part of the fabric of Brooklyn and NYC at large, National Grid plays a significant role in the lives of its users, initiating and establishing sustainable practices. The company’s connection to location and community is expressed and celebrated throughout its new workplace at 2 Hanson Place. Led by its New England-based team, the project redesigned the National Grid workplace to focus on mobility, flexibility, community and wellness, marking a radical shift for employees. The design features 100% unassigned seating, three times more collaboration space than the previous location, technology-enabled collaboration zones and demountable walls for flexibility. As a result, the new workplace allows more employee movement, provides more options for both focused and collaborative work and drives a shared, entrepreneurial work environment.