November Issue of ACE Insider 
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November 2015 | Issue 7
Tribute to ACE Founder Charlie Thornton

Sixty design and construction industry leaders, led by Peter Davoren and Tom Gilbane, CEOs of Turner Construction Company and Gilbane, Inc. respectively, and other ACE leaders and friends honored Charlie Thornton at an October 29 luncheon hosted by Turner at its New York City headquarters.

The occasion celebrated ACE’s achievements over 20 years and Charlie’s inspired creation and leadership of the program. ACE CEO Jack Kalavritinos discussed the nature and reasons for ACE’s success before offering the following toast: "Thank you, Charlie, for all that you have done for ACE and all that you will continue to do.  Today’s celebration is not meant to mark a conclusion --- but a milestone in your service and commitment to ACE."

Milo Riverso, Chair of the Greater New York City ACE Mentor Board and CEO of STV Group, recounted ACE’s start-up years and the commitment of the founders, and Diana Eidenshink, ACE’s Regional Director for the Mid-Atlantic/Northeast and Charlie’s daughter, shared personal reflections about her father. ACE Chairman Tom Gilbane and Vice Chair Peter Davoren presented gifts to the honoree as expressions of thanks for Charlie’s many contributions to the program.

ACE Board Meeting Summary


Major topics addressed in the October Board meeting included:

  • The Executive Committee’s recent work to update ACE’s strategic plan. It will be distributed to affiliates in early 2016.
  • The ACE CEO’s report about activities over the past nine months, including: efforts to understand ACE and build relationships, progress on compliance matters, efforts to increase public awareness, and ways the ACE national office can help to make affiliates more effective.
  • A presentation by the Chicago Architecture Foundation (CAF) about ways that ACE and the CAF have begun collaborations, including possible use of its on-line platform “Discover Design” for the 2017 CIRT—ACE National Design Competition.
ACE Students’ Awareness of Skilled Crafts Careers

This past summer the Construction Industry Round Table (CIRT) commissioned ACE to survey ACE students about the extent of their knowledge of and interest in careers in the skilled crafts. A survey was sent to 4600 students from the classes of 2013/14 and 2014/15, most of who did not complete the program.

Two key findings stand out:

  • Students who completed ACE clearly demonstrated a greater awareness of career opportunities in the skill crafts than those who did not start or finish the program.
  • A majority of all survey respondents (645) wanted to learn more about skilled crafts careers.

An analytical summary of the survey can be viewed at:
http://www.cirt.org/resources/Documents/5A_Construction%20Careers%20Awareness.pdf. Complete survey results and a brief survey report will be sent to affiliate leaders soon.

The ACE Board has begun to discuss ways to ensure ACE participants gain additional information about career options in the construction field.

ACE Mentors Are the Tops

Building Design + Construction magazine recently named 40 industry professionals under the age of 40 to its annual list of “40 under 40.” Public service was one of the criteria for receiving this special recognition. Congratulations to the four ACE mentors who earned this award.

  • Marcia Alvarado, PE (Atkins), mentor and vice chair of the Tampa affiliate.
  • Akilah Dardeen (TriVersity Construction Group), mentor with the Indianapolis affiliate and formerly with the Washington, DC affiliate
  • Virginia Marquardt, AIA (DLR Group), Los Angeles affiliate mentor
  • Monika Thadhani, AIA (VOA), mentor with the Chicago affiliate.
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