DLI Class of 2020 has witnessed more “firsts” than any other of its preceding classes, and this class was no different! With the world going through a pandemic, NAIOP has truly pushed through this difficult time and has done such an amazing job at ensuring normalcy for its members, but also for their Developing Leaders Institute.

Class #6 – Marketing
Given the current world events and pandemic situation, the June DLI Class was still held, but it was done so very differently than the traditional classes held before. This class was hosted and taught via ZOOM! Hayim Mizrachi, President of MDL Group, structured and organized this class to be both interactive and meaningful, ensuring that this class was a success. Prior to the class, Hayim took the time to mail out a book to each individual DLI member, for them to read in preparation to discuss during the class. “This is Marketing” by Seth Godin. Students were able to read ahead of time to ensure a better understanding of the class discussion. A huge thank you to Hayim and MDL Group for providing the class with this very useful and informative book.

Opening discussion for this class was done so by Michael Argier, Senior Development Manager at Panattoni Development. Michael discussed his opinions on the industry and impacts of Covid-19, while also providing the class with tips and insight on how to keep strong and meaningful relationships intact, while also solidifying your own personal brand and reputation.

Hayim continued to speak with and engage the class on many of the key items related to marketing, while demonstrating his own journey of personal growth and development. Offering the class real life experience and conversation provided a meaningful and relatable environment for the class to learn and apply this knowledge to their own journey. While there were too many wonderful quotes to comment on, one of important mention that Hayim taught the class was: “Be a meaningful specific, not a wandering generality.” This one quote alone can sum up a lot of the discussion for this class.

After the class concluded, there was in fact a happy hour for further networking and discussion to take place…. You guessed it! A virtual happy hour held over ZOOM. Other DLI Alumni were able to attend as well – Thank you Jarrad Katz, Executive Vice President of MDL Group and Jeff LaPour, Principal of LaPour for attending the after class happy hour!

DLI Class # 7 – Construction
This 7th class for DLI was held in person on June 8, 2020 at 8400 W. Sunset Road. After the governor allowed our community to enter Phase 1 of the re-opening, the class was excited to participate in person, while maintaining social distancing.

This class was sponsored and taught by Burke Construction and boy did they come out in force! Prepared to discuss every aspect related to construction and technology, the class was greeted by many members of the Burke Construction team including:  Kevin Burke – President & CEO, Jim Colegrove – Special Projects/Managing Partner, Dimitri Mihaloliakos – Vice President/Estimating/Principal, Thad Lawrence – Vice President/Preconstruction/Principal, Vijay Daniel – Vice President of Operations, and Stefanie Fassbender – Virtual Design & Construction Manager.

Kevin Burke started off the conversation by breaking the ice and asking the class what their positives from quarantine were, and surprisingly, most of the class is now a self-proclaimed chef and/or gardener! Kevin immediately went into the discussion of navigating the construction process. With over 36 years of experience, and as one of the most respected names in the construction industry, the class was eager to soak up and learn all of the information provided. Whether choosing a project delivery method or contract method, and everything in between, Kevin kicked off the class with valuable information to lead the DLI class into future success.

Dimitri Mihaloliakos discussed the estimating portion of construction and went over the many variables that may impact a construction budget. Whether inflation/deflation, labor availability, time, or building type, Dimitri was able to get the class thinking about their own projects and allow them to begin applying estimating concepts for their project presentations.

Next up, was Vijay Daniel. Vijay discussed many of the components of construction that comes after the contract is signed and the budgets are done. The execution of the project. How is the project managed efficiently and effectively? The importance of communication, team assembly and an initial kickoff meeting was discussed, along with procurement, submittal reviews and managing the overall project.

Jim Colegrove went further into construction as it relates to tenant improvements. Discussing the deal, negotiating process, document processing, pricing plans, permit submittals, permits, schedule and delivery. The class learned very quickly that a tenant improvement has a lot of factors and that there are many variables to be considered from start to finish.

Thad Lawrence discussed construction of the future and set the scene for what that will look like in the coming years. From advanced robotics to autonomous vehicles, everything was discussed for not only the construction process, but also for the client types we will be designing for in the future and how it is imperative to be forward thinking in your design and construction. Thad further discussed the collection of data that would streamline future construction projects and allow for more efficiency. The future of construction is coming quickly, and Burke has embraced this effort to the fullest.

Lastly, Stefanie Fassbender was up to discuss how technology is being applied to current construction projects. By utilizing BIM and virtual design and construction methods, you are able to enhance the overall project delivery and quality as well as allow for transparency from start to finish. Stephanie further discussed the numbers related to the use of technology on projects, such as: 22% of projects saw reduced project durations, 32% saw reduced document errors, 36% saw reduced rework, and 17% saw fewer claims/mitigations.

Kevin Burke ended the class discussion by discussing risk management from a developer perspective and tied in all of the above components to managing that risk. In closing, Burke Construction gifted the class with several book selections as they relate to success and personal development.

After the class concluded, there was in fact a social distancing happy hour for further networking and discussion to take place…. The happy hour was held at the same location, and the students were able to enjoy wings and networking for a short duration. Everyone was ecstatic about this introduction back into normalcy, and the social distancing was practiced and appreciated by all.


2020 DLI Class Vice President
Christina Stanfill, Director of Project Development
WORTHGROUP Architects & Designers
Cell 702.575.8024 | cstanfill@worthgroup.com