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Curiosity, Humor, & Flexibility — A Great Combo: Brandon Ivy, LEED Green Associate

After you learn more about Brandon Ivy’s diverse career choices and outside interests/pursuits, you’ll see that it’s not surprising that he finally pursued a career in building maintenance. For almost nine (9) years, he has served as Chief Engineer of Highland Oaks, a 62-acre office park with five (5) buildings totaling 576,000 square feet. In addition to the challenges of typical multi-story office buildings with minimal outdoor space, Brandon’s responsibilities also include a large, park-like campus with beautiful shared outdoor areas.

Brandon’s working career began when he joined the Air Force out of high school to work on jets as an F-16 mechanic. Once discharged in 1989, he started in General Maintenance at a downtown Tampa office building and earned his CFC license from Tampa Bay Tech. In 2000, he returned to jet maintenance and went to school to get his FCC A&P license. Five years later, he returned to building maintenance, where he has enjoyed a total of 25 eventful years.

With characteristic humor, Brandon listed “beer” first among his interests/hobbies. Other interests/hobbies included riding a Ninja (“those days are long gone!”), playing baseball through age 35 (2nd/3rd baseman), certified scuba diver since 2014, and collector of old stuff.  He owns and maintains a ’67 Firebird 400, a 68 GMC Fleetside pickup, a 1987 Sea Ray Pachanga, and a 1995 Corvette.

What Brandon’s work experience in jet and building maintenance and his diverse hobbies and interests have in common, is that they required both broad-ranging and detailed/specialized expertise. Most likely, he sense of humor and positive attitude contributed to his success also.

1. How long have you been with Cushman & Wakefield and the Highlands Oaks properties?

I’ve been at Highland Oaks since November of 2010 – staying when Cushman & Wakefield came in August, 2015.

2.What is your biggest ongoing challenge as an engineer?

There are literally dozens of directions one can take on a single day and priorities change by the minute.

3.It’s hurricane season. How does this impact your workload and priorities?

Hurricane season takes a lot of preparation, a lot of work! My #1 priority has been addressing those pesky wall and window leaks. A1 Orange is our “go-to” waterproofing company – they are very good at what they do.

4.With 25 years in building maintenance, what do you enjoy most about your work?

I’ve been probably the luckiest engineer in the business. I’ve worked at places that have exposed me to many different kinds of equipment and have worked with so many good people.

5.There is a shortage of property engineers as Baby Boomers are retiring. What are the most important criteria needed by individuals interested in this field?

It’s seems to be common knowledge as to why it’s a challenge with today’s younger people. The following seems simple but…

  1. Show up every day and don’t be surprised that you have perform your duties.
  2. The need to be flexible. Tasks and duties change daily.
  3. You must be a responsible Self-Starter.

 If you have all 3 of these skills, you are 3/4 of the way there!

Brandon was born in Taipei, Taiwan and lived in the Far East until he was 16, and then he lived full-time in the USA.  His wife is a Property Manager in downtown Tampa. “Nope, we do not talk shop at home!” His favorite sports’ teams are Tampa Bay Lightning, the St. Louis Cardinals, and Florida State. He is “starting to like the UGA Bull Dogs more.” His favorite two charities are Wounded Warrior Project and Disabled American Veterans.

Let’s Prepare District 5 Students For Back-to-School!

Join A1 Orange in Supporting

District 5 Commissioner Regina Hill’s

Back-to-School Celebration!

 

Do you remember how much fun it was to get new school supplies and clothes for back to school — how it helped build excitement and set the tone for a great school year?

Once again, A1 Orange is asking for your donations of socks and underwear as part of Regina Hill’s effort to help prepare area students for a great academic year 2019-20. Most people prefer to make monetary donations and A1 Orange team members shop for the items — or you can bring your donations of socks and underwear (sizes below) to our office at 1345 Long Street, Orlando.

Together, last year we raised over $4,000 in addition to donated items! The picture at right shows families “shopping” for back-to-school items from the donated goods.

Want to make a monetary donation?

Please make your check payable to A1 Orange Exterior Building Services, noting in the memo area “Back-to-School Drive.” You can either:

  • Mail your check to A1 Orange, PO Box 555704, Orlando, FL 32855, OR
  • Drop it off at 1345 Long Street, Orlando, 9 am- 4:30 pm, Monday to Friday.
  • Make a donation through Zelle via your banking app: Click “Quick Pay with Zelle” and “Add Recipient” cmack@a1orange.com. (This goes directly into an A1 Orange bank account.)

Please make cash/check donations between now and Friday, July 26.

Do you prefer to purchase socks and/or underwear to donate?

Consider colorful solid or print underwear, sizes needed range from 4T to adult — male and female. (There is usually a shortage of adult-size items for high school students.) You may:

  • Bring these items to 1345 Long Street, Orlando, 9 am- 4:30 pm, Monday to Friday.
  • Please drop off your donated items to A1 Orange between now and Friday, August 2, so that we have time to sort them.

Professionalism On-the-Job and In the Saddle: Sheryl Frick, RPA

Nearly every property manager can identify with the image of a hero riding in to save the day as they “rescue” tenants from everyday property issues large and small. Tampa area Property Manager, Sheryl Frick with Ryan Companies US, literally rides a horse as a volunteer of the Pasco County Sheriff’s Mounted Posse. She joined the Posse when her son left for college, combining her passion for horses with a desire to give more time to community service.

The Posse’s two main priorities are participating in search and rescue activities and community outreach events. In order to perform these tasks, volunteers must commit to ongoing training with the Posse — Sheryl logged 150+ hours in 2018. She especially enjoys participating in community events and outreach, helping to strengthen the connection between area law enforcement and its citizens.

“Everybody loves the horses and will come up to the horse and talk to the deputy and posse members. Our goal is to help people feel more comfortable with law enforcement officers by interacting with them in a relaxed environment.”

The connections between Sheryl’s volunteer role and her “day” job as a property manager are pretty strong. Property managers require ongoing training to maintain certifications such as Sheryl’s RPA and must build strong relationships with their tenants to boost satisfaction and retention. We asked Sheryl to share some of her experience as a property manager.

1. How long have you been a property manager and how did you get started in this line of work? 

It’s hard to believe that it’s been 28 years since I graduated from the University of Florida with a degree in anthropology! I gravitated towards real estate because it seemed interesting, and have had a number of jobs with great companies.

2. What skills are most important to somebody considering a career in property management?

You have be able to multi-task — to manage dozens of different projects at the same time, creatively find solutions to problems, and be comfortable with a varied day which could change substantially from your plans as tenant/property needs arise. You must be a people person and able to operate with flexibility between the lease and practice.

3. Working with A1 Orange, can you tell us about how you solved a very unique pressure cleaning challenge?

One of our properties in beautifully situated on a small pond, but the water-facing side had access issues. A1 Orange was the only company willing to provide service from a boat in the pond, and it has worked out beautifully.

4. Being a property manager is a pretty intense job — how do you relax?

Caring for my horses is a great stress reliever and very calming. Combining community service with my love of horses has been awesome!

5. Speaking of community service, Ryan Companies is pretty big on giving back — can you share a few recent projects you’ve participated in?

We cook dinners for the Ronald McDonald House quarterly, work on Habitat for Humanity projects, and volunteer with Feeding Tampa Bay.

Sheryl is currently a Real Estate Manager with Ryan Companies US, Inc., and previously was with Healthcare Trust of America, Inc., USAA/ABM/Transwestern, and Songy Partners. She has extensive experience with hi-rise and construction management and has won six BOMA TOBY Awards.

 

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