SYDNEY – The Board of Trustees convened for the second time in 2017, just prior to the Australia Conference. This meeting marked a few significant changes to the Board.
The first change was the introduction of a new Trustee, Charu Thapar, Managing Director – Property & Asset Management Services for JLL, in Mumbai, India. Thapar manages a 2,500-person team and a portfolio of more than 275 properties, in one of the world’s most populous and rapidly urbanizing nations. Her experience is expected to add a vital component to the leadership of the Council, as its global mission embraces the skyline-shaping trends in developing nations.
The second was the changeover of Chairman duties from David Malott, Founder & CEO, AI., who had held the position from 2014 to 2017, to Steve Watts, Partner, alinea Consulting. The formal “passing of the gavel” took place later in front of the entire Conference audience at the second plenary on Oct. 31, but the critical dialogue around the new role happened at the Trustees Meeting. Watts presented for 10 minutes on his intended approach to the Chairmanship, including his three core points of “Progress the Trajectory,” “Strengthen the Brand,” and “Future-Proof the Organization.” Under these, sub-goals included increasing chapter activity, engaging more students and young professionals, collaborating further with other non-profit bodies, and increasing the ownership and mind-share the Council claims, especially in the face of worldwide news events about tall buildings. In addition to this, Watts presented on proposed changes to the organizational structure of the Council that he envisaged would help support the core goals.
Executive Director Antony Wood briefed the Trustees on the Council’s 2017 initiatives and its financial projections for the next year, as well as an update on plans for the 2018 and 2019 conferences. The 2018 Conference will take place in Dubai, UAE and Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, on the theme of “Polycentric Cities,” in some ways a continuation of the “Connecting the City” theme of the 2017 Conference, Wood said. Some key details were already confirmed and would be announced at the launch session at the end of the current conference. The 2019 Conference will take place in Chicago, to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the Council. But before either of these, the expanded Awards program will culminate in Chicago in late May 2018, featuring a new two-day program and a new category, the Construction Award.
Next, each of the Trustees elaborated on their own activities within their respective disciplines and regions, and described their contributions to supporting participation in CTBUH initiatives, conferences and membership. Watts then outlined the expectations of Trustees for the coming year.
The Trustees’ Meeting concluded just in time for the Trustees to proceed to the Leaders’ Meeting – but not before a celebratory glass of champagne was raised in honor of outgoing Chairman David Malott.