NAA Announces 2008 Paragon Awards

By Anuradha Kher, Online News EditorOrlando, Fla.–The National Apartment Association Education Institute (NAAEI) recently recognized outstanding property management at its 2008 Paragon awards ceremony in Orlando, Fla. NAA Chairman of the Board Michael Tompkins, CPM, CCIM, presented national honors to the Apartment Leasing Professional of the Year, Apartment Manager of the Year, Apartment Maintenance Technician of the Year and professional designate (all pictured). Thomas Feldman, NALP, of the Burlington, Mass.-based The Dolben Co. was named National Apartment Leasing Professional of the Year. “Feldman and his colleagues represent the best and the brightest in the apartment industry,” says NAAEI President Alexandra Jackiw, CAPS, CPM. “With just five years of experience in apartment leasing, Feldman has taken leasing to another level by introducing a new approach to leasing, while making a positive impact on his community and maintaining lasting connections with his residents.”The NAAEI also presented Kelly LaGuardia, CAM, who trains new hires for High Point, N.C.-based Apartment Dynamics and is the property takeover specialist for all their acquisitions, with the Certified Apartment Manager of the Year award. “Kelly has shown a willingness and dedication to her education, philanthropy and customer service, setting a standard for her colleagues and her residents,” says Jackiw. In addition, LaGuardia serves on the Triad Apartment Association’s Education and Government Affairs committees, the Legislative Task Force, and as facilitator at the National Brainstorming Conference in her home state. She has earned the National Apartment Leasing Professional (NALP), Certified Apartment Manager (CAM) through NAAEI, North Carolina Brokers License, CPO license and is a Notary Public.Tami Fossum, CAPS, the regional asset manager of Blue Ridge Property Management based in High Point, N.C., was awarded Professional Designate of the Year. “Fossum has shown exemplary skills in developing company training programs in addition to her active participation in her local apartment association’s committee activities,” Jackiw says. “Fossum is a proven role model and industry resource, so much so that she has been referred to as the ‘Wonder Woman’ of property management.”Fossum holds her Certified Apartment Property Supervisor (CAPS) designation through NAAEI and Housing Credit Certified Professional (HCCP) designation through the National Association of Home Builders. Fossum is also an NAAEI faculty member and NAA Lyceum candidate.Mark Lawrence, CAMT, director of maintenance for Chestnut Hill Realty (CHR), has been awarded Certified Apartment Maintenance Technician of the Year.Jackiw says, “Mark’s experience and enthusiasm for community maintenance and customer service standards not only make him a valued asset to his community and his team, based in Chestnut Hill, Mass., but he continues to set an important example for others in apartment maintenance.” Lawrence sets the performance standards for maintenance staff at all of Chestnut Hill Realty’s residential communities. In his 23 years with CHR, he has moved up through the ranks and, in 2007, was named director of maintenance with Lawrence and his team responsible for 3,700 units.Lawrence co-authored CHR’s first maintenance policy and procedures manual and has developed a range of training modules for both new and existing maintenance staff. He chairs CHR’s cross-divisional maintenance subcommittee, the goal of which is to foster teamwork and find more efficient ways of doing things. He was recognized in 2007 with the Rental Housing Association’s Certified Apartment Maintenance Technician Award.Last but not least, the title of 2008 Apartment Community of the Year went to GRIGIO Tempe Town Lake, Gray Development Group, Tempe, Ariz. This 522-unit community was also recently singled out for awards by the Arizona Multihousing Association (AMA). it is managed by Gray Clow Residential LLC. Caption: Pictured from l. to r. are: Michael Tompkins, CPM, CCIM, NAA Chairman of the Board; Tami Fossum, CAPS (Professional Designate of the Year); Kelly LaGuardia, NALP, CAM (Certified Apartment Manager of the Year); Mark Lawrence, CAMT (Certified Apartment Maintenance Technician of the Year); and Thomas Feldman, NALP (National Apartment Leasing Professional of the Year).