Message from the NAIOP GTA President, Michael Turner

 

Message from the NAIOP GTA President, Michael Turner

 
 
 
As it is the time of the year when many of us are scheduling or preparing for upcoming summer holidays, I felt it appropriate to take this opportunity to update you about our chapter's recent activities.
 
Unlike the unusually wet and cool Spring and this year's slow start to Summer, your NAIOP chapter has continued to hit the ground running since my last update at the beginning of the year. Our chapter continues to be recognized for many of its initiatives, none of which would be possible without the on-going engagement and support of the 75-plus volunteers we have across our organization. Some highlights from recent and upcoming activities, include:
 
Developing Talent - our industry leading Developing Leaders Program continues to grow and be engaged. The DL group is now 321 strong and has hosted seven events so far in 2013. Many DLs are now participating in our Mentorship Program - and to all Mentors, I personally thank you for your time and participation in this unique initiative.  The program is enjoying record participation this year among DLs and Mentors. Stay tuned for further updates from this cohort over the summer, and please keep an eye out for our annual Rookies & Rockstars event, scheduled for August 15th at Archeo in The Distillery Historic District. 
 
Education and Sustainability - our Education and Sustainability Committees continue to be very active. New content on the NAIOP Canada Sustainability website, managed in collaboration with NAIOP Vancouver and NAIOP Calgary, offers relevant information to our members in the areas of sustainability and green real estate - two areas that are increasingly important in corporate real estate decision making. On the Education front, the committee has offered two courses this year with another scheduled for the Fall. There is strong demand from our members for high-quality, contemporary education content and that is what we aim to supply. We will continue to add course dates as the year progresses. 
 
Celebrating Excellence - on April 3rd, 2013 we delivered our 12th Annual REX Awards Gala at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre. We enjoyed participation from 650 attendees and have received overwhelmingly positive feedback from our members and their guests at this distinguished event. It was wonderful to see so many industry colleagues at the venue and to celebrate excellence from a broad range of categories. Special mention goes to Tom McCarthy for receipt of the Lifetime Achievement Award in recognition of his many accomplishments, and to Margot Friedman for receiving the Community Service Award as small tribute to her work and dedication to Parkinson Society Canada. Many thanks also to the entire crew of REX Committee members and volunteers who made this terrific event happen.  
 
Government Relations and Advocacy - this group remains active on many files where local policy has a direct impact on our members and the commercial real estate industry. Most recently, NAIOP has taken a leadership role and is collaborating with REALpac, ICSC, BOMA Toronto and BILD in engaging government and informing decision makers about the implications of Metrolinx's proposed Parking Tax. While the entire industry is committed to assisting with responsible growth that includes transit, we need to ensure that funding proposals are equitable and appropriate in achieving the right policy objectives for our region. The proposed Parking Tax targets one industry unfairly - commercial property - and an analysis of the policy shows it will disproportionately harm certain narrow segments of owners and users in the GTA. We will continue to engage with our members with further details on this file, as consultations with government and various stakeholders continue to unfold. 
 
Programs and Networking - we have hosted 18 events so far this year, including successes and sell outs at our annual Ski Day and NAIOP's Annual Golf Classic at Angus Glen, where we hosted 296 golfers. Our members continue to value the highest quality programming in the industry, and our Board and Programs Committee are committed to making sure we always distinguish ourselves in this value-added arena for the benefit of our members. Our most recent event, titled Pulse on Toronto Planning, was held June 25th at the Arcadian Court and featured Toronto Chief Planner, Jennifer Keesmaat, and Peter Milczyn, Councilor of the City of Toronto. They provided insights and shared their perspectives on the future of the City. 
 
I would also like to take this opportunity to thank our Board members for their many hours of volunteering and leadership to make our chapter as relevant and successful as it is. It is also appropriate to thank all of our volunteers and members for your continued engagement and support - without everyone we could not enjoy the many successes we have, or look forward to more in the future.
 
Enjoy your summer holidays and please continue to participate in our many upcoming programs and events. As always, we welcome ideas and feedback that can result in improvements to our chapter and the services it provides its members.
 
 
Sincerely, 
Michael Turner, President, NAIOP Greater Toronto Chapter
 

on July 4, 2013