June 2020

Chapter Newsletter

June 2020


President's Message

Andrea Tobias, Chapter President

Andrea Tobias
Associate Vice President
HGA Architects and Engineers

Dear Northern California Chapter Members,

It’s an absolute honor to serve as your chapter president for the 2020/2021 term. I would have never guessed that I would begin my term in the middle of a pandemic, and I think it’s safe to say that none of us were prepared for what has unfolded since the beginning of the year. What I am prepared for -- however different and difficult the conditions -- is helping ensure the Northern California chapter continues to serve our members with a strong community and robust network, meaningful education, and research and support that is appropriate for the times.

Over the years, our Chapter has become a leading example of “stronger together”. It’s this core value more than any other that binds me to our unique and special community. In past upheavals, we had planned for the possibility of decreased engagement. However, looking back at historical data, it’s been just the opposite. As times got tough, our sponsors tended to continue to invest, member engagement remained high and we stood strong, together. I see of some of those same signals today, for which I am grateful.

I am, however, mindful that our current environment is far different than anything that’s come before it. This pandemic is like nothing we have faced before. There are no best practices nor lessons learned we can look to for guidance. As a chapter, we are pivoting quickly, finding new and different ways to deliver member and sponsor value, all while there remains a multitude of unknowns.

Relative to COVID-19, I am so proud of how our leadership team has responded. Days before I was handed the gavel on April 1st my predecessor, Robert Teed, leapt into action creating the COVID-19 Special Interest Group (SIG). It was the first time in our chapter history that we formed a SIG in response to a crisis. Soon after we held our first virtual chapter meeting entitled Life after COVID: A Macro View of the Economy after the COVID Crisis. The Women of CoreNet produced Return-to-Office: CRE Leaders Sharing Experiences from Around the Globe, and we launched our first Pop-Up event Welcome Back to the Office: Re-entry to the Workplace. All these programs were outstanding interactive sessions that engaged the audience and set records for attendance.

You have my commitment that we will remain creative, flexible and fluid in how we deliver value, while never straying from our Mission and Vision and our Strategic Plan.

I am humbled to be working with some of the best and brightest that is our 2020/2021 Board and our Committee Leadership. This is the right team at the right time, and I couldn’t ask for better partners in this journey! I encourage you to visit our website to get to know these impressive individuals.

In closing, I want to thank our immediate past president Robert Teed, and to Robert’s predecessor John Lucas, for ensuring we have a healthy and resilient chapter. Robert and I were 100% aligned on the chapter’s Strategic Themes he introduced during his term, and I am embracing those for my term as well. These include: 1) Equity & Inclusion; 2) Increased connection to our members by offering best-in-class learning and networking opportunities; 3) Reaching those Early-in-Career and preparing them for future leadership in the organization, and; 4) Improving Communications thru social media and content creation.

We will not allow the COVID-19 crisis to tear at the fabric that makes our Chapter exceptional. Things may look and feel different (even strange) at times, but we will press forward and we will remain stronger together.

“When I was a child and I would see scary things in the news, my mother would say to me, 'Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping.'" – Fred Rogers (Mister Rogers Neighborhood)

Wishing You and Yours Health and Well-being,
Andrea Tobias


Featured Member Profile

Julia Campbell

Julia Campbell is an architect and workplace specialist who is passionate about design and loves to nurture talent.  Recently, after many years working for large design firms, she joined her long time friend Cecilia Quezada as Partner of San Francisco-based Quezada Architecture, an award winning woman and minority owned firm renowned for its diverse portfolio and strong focus on design.  “I am so excited about this next chapter in my life and career,” said Campbell, “I find it inspiring to run this amazing boutique firm with a staff of 25 celebrating our 25th year in business.  We have a rich history, a global reach and we are charting an extremely bright future!”

What excites Campbell most about design is how it affects all aspects of the human condition, how light and space and materials impact people on both an emotional and an intellectual level.  Early in her career she chose interiors because she found the work fulfilling. “I have loved specializing in interior architecture and specifically workplace design,” she said. “This context allows me to help clients test new and innovative ideas quickly and make an immediate positive impact on how people work, and in turn how they live their lives.”  

Naturally, Campbell has turned her attention to helping lead the industry’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic.  She is deeply involved in creating solutions to meet each of her client’s individual needs and to contributing to global thought leadership on the subject.  “We are considering the immediate, short-term and long-term impacts on architecture and interiors: how we will interact with each other and maintain culture when we come back to the office (or not),” she said. “A crisis forces design to pivot dramatically and make creative leaps forward.”  

Relative to CoreNet, Campbell serves on the Chapter Leadership Council and is in her fourth year as Co-Chair of the Chapter Programs Committee. She joined CoreNet in 2010 and credits the organization with helping her develop a network of wonderful friends and connections and ultimately assisting with her career advancement.  “I value the community of incredible professionals supporting each other and providing a strong network within our industry,” she said. I love my work with the Programs Committee too!  We are always looking to provide challenging, thought-provoking topics and amazing speakers.  The organization has constantly encouraged me to lead programs that challenge the status quo.”

Committed to helping develop the next generation, Campbell considers mentorship and supporting people in their professional evolution the most rewarding aspects of her career.  “My greatest successes come from seeing untapped potential and nurturing talent,” she said. “Connecting people and ideas brings me a great deal of joy.”  One of the top pieces of advice she has for young professionals is to build relationships instead of just projects. “So much of my work has been with the same people over the years,” she shared. “If you consider your client’s point-of-view and their business, you will continue to work with them and build life-long friendships."

On the personal front, Campbell, who originally hails from London, England, now lives in the heart of San Francisco. She runs a busy household with her husband Philip, a former architect, turned creative games designer and professor and their three children Charlotte (21), Alexander (19), and Lily (16) as well as two Wheaten Terriers and two cats!  “I recently built a house in with a meadow on the roof where our pack of animals gather,” she said. “It took five years to build and was a labor of love.”  While passionate about traveling, biking, and anything active, she now (during the COVID-19 era), spends more time baking and watching Netflix. She and her family also enjoy being active in their community.  “As a family we are really involved with the Salesian Boys and Girls Club and we love to design and build the sets for theater productions,” she said. “I have also served on the Board of the Museum of the African Diaspora and I am passionate about diversity and giving everyone equal opportunities, especially in a creative field.”


Chapter News and Updates

CoreNet Apprentice Program Update

Join ServiceNow as a 2020 CoreNet Apprentice Program Host! The CoreNet Apprentice Program (CAP) connects CoreNet member companies with top tier talent from schools throughout the Bay Area including, UC Berkeley, Stanford and more! To learn more please email Nick DeMartini at nick.dematini@cbre.com or Jackie Teer at Jacqueline.Teer@cushwake.com


Women of CoreNet Update

Women of CoreNet Co-Chairs Nancy Morse, Laurie Orlov and Soraya Farrah hosted a highly relevant panel entitled Return-to-Office: CRE Leaders Sharing Experiences From Around the Globe.

Held on April 30th, this engagement was well moderated by Nancy Morse (Newmark Knight Frank), and featured panelists Sandy Heistand (Dolby Laboratories), Barbara Donaldson (Synopsys), LindaMarie Santiago (VMware), and Roy Abernathy (Newmark Knight Frank). These corporate real estate experts shared insights, strategies and knowledge gained from the front lines - as they have already implemented returns to office in other parts of the globe. The audience was engaged using real time polls and a chat-based Q & A.

Each panelist shared what they have learned from early experience approaching this monumental and unprecedented task. Click here for full recap.

Some Topics Included:

-Global Return to Work focused on Asia
-Impact on real estate portfolios, maintaining culture, efficiency working from home
-How roles and responsibilities differ between government, landlord, and tenants / employers and how this affects compliance
-Phasing of return to office / re-boarding, entry requirements, testing, workplace planning - workstation, conference room, amenity space utilization, public space and elevator protocols
-New protocols for technology, emerging technologies, longer term home set up, PPE and cleaning, food service, transportation considerations
-Crisis Management, change management, communication and training strategies, playbooks, and signage
-Taking local and regional differences into consideration
-Plans to report, respond and dial back should a case occur on premise, or should flare ups occur in general public
-Taking employees differing circumstances into account - personal health (psychological, emotional and physical), child care, parent or other family care


What is your professional area of focus?
11% Architecture
14% Broker
14% Construction & Project Management
27% End User
11% Furniture
24% Other

When you return to the office, what is the most important thing to you?
10% personal workspace
15% travel on public and employer provided transportation
62% public and collaborative areas
13% locations necessity to conduct business off-site (vendor offices)

When will you feel comfortable going back to the office?
32% going back the day the office opens
15% wait a couple weeks
20% wait a month
34% a couple of months

Thank you to our moderator, our panelists and our audience for their questions! If you were unable to attend and wish to know more of what was discussed, please feel free to contact CoreNet NorCal and they can put you in touch with any of the Women of CoreNet Co-Chairs Nancy Morse, Soraya Farrah and Lori Orlov.


2020 Annual Golf Tournament Update

Chapter Postpones Annual Golf Tournament

After careful consideration from the CoreNet Leadership and Special Event Committee, a decision was made to postpone our Annual Golf Tournament originally scheduled for June 15. We have reserved a new date at Sequoyah Country Club, September 28, 2020, in hopes that at that time we can safely gather in some capacity.

Our Chapter continues to endeavor to bring value and community to our membership via all available means and are working diligently to reorganize and reschedule events. While we so greatly value being together and honoring our traditions we continue our commitment, first and foremost, to respect your well-being and to the health of our community as we make these decisions.
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CoreNet Membership Survey Update

In Q1 of 2020, pre-COVID, the Chapter surveyed our members to better understand our membership demographics and priorities. The data is helpful in shaping our chapter's programing, activities, and priorities in the year ahead.


Get Involved with a CoreNet Northern California Committee

Get more involved in CoreNet NorCal! One of the best ways to increase your involvement and really get to know other members of CoreNet NorCal is by joining a committee. Through the efforts of the CoreNet Northern California Chapter committees, we create and organize the events, meetings, programs and publications that you enjoy.

If you are interested in joining a committee, please contact our Administrative Director, Ernst Calais, at calais@adobe.com or log into www.nocal.corenetglobal.org and sign up on the volunteer portal.


Upcoming Events

Women of CoreNet // Wednesday, June 3 // Virtual
Resilience, Recovery and Recreate - Putting Your Best Assets To Work

Got change? We’ve all been faced with extraordinary change, yet some of us have been more resilient than others. Join us for a great session with Allison Tabor on Wednesday, June 3rd, as we discuss Resilience, Recovery & Recreate, Putting Your Best Assets to Work.

Together, let’s discover how we can build resilience, recover and grow in the face of so much change.

Allison Tabor, Coppia Advisory, is a pragmatic executive coach, speaker, facilitator and the author of the bestselling book, Work Your Assets Off: Stop Working So Hard in Business and Life.

Venue: Zoom
Schedule: 4:00-5:30pm PST
Cost: Free to members. All CoreNet NorCal members are welcome to register.


Featured Platinum Sponsors

DPR Colliers

2020 January Chapter Meeting



2020 Holiday Party 



2019 CRE Awards Gala



2019 Day on the Bay



CoreNet Apprentice Program



2019 Golf Tournament 

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June Chapter Meeting


July Chapter Meeting


August Chapter Meeting 

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