May 2019

Chapter Newsletter

May 2019

President's Message

Robert Teed, Chapter President

Robert Teed
VP, Real Estate and Workplace 

Dear Northern California Chapter Members,

I am honored to assume the role of chapter president as of April 1, 2019 for the 2019/2020 term. Thanks to the leadership of our immediate past president John Lucas, and Jay Sholl before him, as well as our outgoing Leadership team and committee members, our chapter is healthy in all respects. Most importantly, we have a highly engaged membership, for which I have each of you to thank (all 900 of you)! We are also very fortunate to have a generous sponsorship community, which helps to ensure the chapter is positioned to deliver meaningful programs and events that in turn drive member engagement. And, we have a dedicated Chapter Leadership Team working with amazing committee members across all nine of our committees/SIGs, all of whom volunteer their time in the pursuit of making the Northern California Chapter one of the most impressive and progressive of the 42 chapters across the globe.

During 2019/2020, we will stay true to our Vision that, worldwide, companies and individuals consider CoreNet Global an indispensable resource. We will also stay true to our Mission to connect corporate real estate and workplace-oriented professionals, to promote personal excellence and to add value to each individual and their respective enterprises. We will fulfill both our vision and mission by delivering best-in-class learning and networking programs, and by continuing to deliver our renown special events such as our Annual CRE Awards, Economic Forecast, Golf Tournament, Day on the Bay, Sponsor Appreciation Event and Holiday Party.

Additionally, during 2019/2020, our Chapter Leadership we will focus on several strategic imperatives:

  • Re-frame our efforts to include the broader topic of ‘workplace’
  • Prioritize Diversity & Inclusion across all aspects of our chapter
  • Increase attractiveness and stickiness for those who are Early-in-Career
  • Improve/modernize our approach to Social Media and communications in general
  • Focus on better understanding (and delivering) the value our members seek from our chapter
  • Develop Small/Smaller programs and look to expand methods of program and content delivery

Our industry is changing quickly, especially in Northern California, as the themes of ‘diversity, inclusion & belonging’, ‘employee experience’ and ‘digital transformation’ each move to the forefront of many of our companies and agencies. By focusing on our strategic imperatives, we are positioning our chapter to continue to be highly relevant to our members and their respective enterprises. Additionally, our industry is poised to change further as solutions such as ‘workplace as a service’ and as investments in ‘prop-tech’ begin to show up in meaningful ways. As a region, Northern California remains the center of innovation across the globe, and our chapter has both the opportunity and the obligation to be a thought-leader on those things that are born here that impact or influence ‘place’.

In addition to our chapter, we are also part of a global network of more than 11,000 members across 42 chapters globally, and with some of the best learning programs around. I personally leverage our global network often in my ‘day job’ and I know many of you do, too. So, I would end on the adage of think global, because we are, but act local by being part of our very, very special Northern California chapter.

I look forward to seeing you throughout the year, and I appreciate deeply the trust you place in me as your chapter president.


Robert Teed
Vice President Real Estate and Workplace, ServiceNow
President CoreNet Global Northern California Chapter


Chapter News and Updates

Chapter Meeting Recaps

February Chapter Meeting // Thursday, February 21 // Santa Clara
What Makes Commercial Real Estate a Top Target for Hackers - and What You Can Do About It

CoreNet members and guest got a huge wake-up call at the February 21st Chapter Meeting on Cybersecurity titled: What Makes Commercial Real Estate a Top Target for Hackers - and What You Can Do About It. Held at Oracle’s Agnews Campus in Santa Clara, the event drew a crowd of over 150 people and featured a fascinating, albeit frightening, look at this critical topic.

Panelists included:
Cynthia James, CEO, Cyberus Security
Don Goldstein CEO of 5Q Cyber LLC
Julie Bonnel-Rodgers, Attorney

Key topics included:

1. The things that makes your buildings attractive make them vulnerable
2. Key cyber-threats to corporate real estate
3. The three principals of corporate real estate cybersecurity
4. Top five rules for better cybersecurity

April Chapter Meeting // Thursday, April 18 // Sunnyvale

How Google's Workplace Team Support Their People, Culture, Values and Organizational Goals

Attendees got a rare look behind the scenes with a presentation and tour of 1212 Bordeaux, in Sunnyvale, Google’s new LEED Platinum build-to-suit. Focused on light, air and noise as driving principles, the facility serves as a living lab and houses Real Estate & Workplace Services. Design features include an expansive 40k sf floor plate, natural materials that will change over time, energy efficient building systems and a thoughtful biophilia program focused on maximizing views for every occupant. Kate North, VP Workplace Innovation, Colliers International moderated a panel of Googlers pushing the boundaries on the workplace planning, design and operations including:

  • Mary Davidge, Director of Global Design Real Estate and Workplace Services
  • Joshua Bridie, Global Design Interior Design Lead, and Workplace Services
  • Darrell Smith, Director, Bay Area Facilities
  • Rhonda Francis, Workplace operations manager
  • Josh Portner, Director, Real Estate District Development


Northern California Chapter Members Contribute to Fire Relief 

CoreNet Global Northern California Chapter members once again rallied behind the pursuit of social good by offering their registration fees from the January 2019 Chapter Holiday Party event towards the Camp Fire Relief Fund. Thanks to the success of the of the event $8,375 was contributed to the North Valley Community Foundation who assists the many community organizations serving evacuees and first responders of the Camp Fire. Thanks to all those who attended for your contribution.


Request for Committee Members

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. The CoreNet committees create and organize the events, meetings, programs and publications that you enjoy. Committees you can join are: Young Leaders, Special Events, Programs, Membership, CoreNet Apprentice Committee (CAP), Communications, and Technology. All of our committees are looking for volunteers. If you are interested in joining a committee, please contact our Administrative Director, Michelle Lagos, at or (415) 720-0366, and she will connect you with a committee.


Young Leaders Update

Lunch with a Leader // Wednesday, June 12// San Francisco
CoreNet Young Leaders are excited to announce a "Lunch with a Leader" session with Instacart's Director of Real Estate and Workplace, Warren Kleban. Please join Warren for lunch and discussion on his experiences from the early days in startup life to effecting change at dynamic and disruptive unicorns on Wednesday, June 12th at 11:45 am at Instacart's San Francisco Headquarters.

Venue: Instacart: 50 Beale Street #600, San Francisco, CA 94105
Schedule: 11:45 AM - 1:00 PM
Cost: YL Member: $20.00 

Please Note: This event has a limited capacity, must be a CoreNet Young Leader member to attend (35 years old and under). Registration closes 6/7/19.


Women of CoreNet Recap

Women of CoreNet February Program // Wednesday, February 27 // Sunnyvale

Building your Own Door: A conversation with Leaders Iris Gai, Shawn McLean-Bergel and Helen Vu

Andrea Traum, Sr. PM, Kleinfelder moderated a panel including some of our chapter’s most accomplished women including:

Iris Gai, VP Real Estate & Workplace, VMWare
Gai left academia for real estate development when she realized she gets bored easily and she wanted something she could touch. She transitioned into corporate real estate somewhat by accident when she joined Sun Microsystems purely because she had her third child and wanted to work close to home. When Sun reorganized the most desirable jobs was Workplace Manger. However, Gai, who indicated she had few if any mentors, wanted to build campuses. She followed her heart rather and learned a valuable lesson, doing what was right thing her. She shared her advice on building a great team:

Hire the right people – Most people base the decision 60% qualifications and 40% personality. She switches it.
Set up good boundaries – geographic or functional. Everyone needs to know what their job is. Then let them be the expert and decision maker within their boundaries – it unleashes creativity and leaderships. It makes her life easier because they are the ones staying up at night!
Set the tone – with clarity – morally and legally right (company, department, team, then self).

Helen Vu, Director, Global Strategic Portfolio Planning, Google
Vu shared a valuable lesson about continuing to follow her “NorthStar” and about being patient. She made a move earlier in her career which she realized was irrational in hindsight. She saw that people being hired into the finance organization got promoted and she was getting passed over. She got frustrated and chased a new job with a bigger title and more money. Lured away by what the new company promised, she quit and accepted the new position. However, what was promised by her new employer never materialized. So, she boomeranged back to her old company. At first, she reported, it felt like she was groveling. Later she realized they needed her just as much as she needed them. Vu told a fun story involving Gai. Many years ago, Gai interviewed her and rejected her. She indicated that Gai asked her, “Why do you want to be here? You don’t want this job, you want my job.” Driving home that day Vu realized she was right! She referred attendees to a Financial Times article titled Why Do So Many Incompetent Men Win at Work? Her advice for women is “go for it!” “Show up with energy and enthusiasm even if you don’t have the entire skill set.

Shawn McLean-Bergel, Founder & Principal, McLean Bergel Design
McLean-Bergel indicated one of her biggest lessons has been letting go of perfectionism. She said she needed to do a lot of work on herself and has become much better at accepting that no one is perfect, including her. A native of Canada, she wound up in the Bay Area by fluke.


Annual Golf Tournament

June 17 2019, Sequoyah Country Club in Oakland
CoreNet’s Annual Golf Tournament is on June 17th at the historic and serene Sequoyah Country Club in the Oakland Hills. The hilly terrain and undulating greens challenge even the more experienced golfer, and the course has no parallel fairways or no like holes. The course is a demanding par 70 for men and par 72 for women, with one of the highest slopes of any layout in California. Players team in foursomes to cover the more than 6,000 yard, 18-hole course. More than 30 sponsors participate to make this event possible and provide an amazing array of activities, prizes and giveaways, food, beverages, golf carts, and other amenities for a full day of fun at every turn.


Upcoming Events

May Chapter Meeting // Thursday, May 16 // San Francisco
Moms, Men, and Millennials: Insight for the 21st Century World of Work

The need to attract and retain the best and brightest talent in today’s shifting climate is key to staying competitive. With 64 million Millennials expected to become parents in the next decade, leaders are asking themselves, "How do we support working mothers? How can men be part of the solution? And, what do Millennials really want?" Lisen Stromberg, workplace culture innovation expert and author of Work Pause Thrive: How to Pause for Parenthood Without Killing Your Career, will discuss the keys to creating highly inclusive, highly productive workplaces where moms, men, and Millennials can thrive.

Twitter: 1 10th Street, 2nd Floor, San Francisco, CA 94103
Schedule: 3:30p: Registration // 4:00p: Program // 5:30p: Reception
Cost: Member: $35.00 // Non-Member End User: $60.00 // Non-Member Service Provider: $85.00


June Chapter Meeting // Thursday, June 20 // Sunnyvale
LinkedIn Workplace Design Lab

Join us for our June event with Jim Morgensen and the LinkedIn Design + Build team for an interesting discussion on how LinkedIn designs and delivers space, using the findings the team develops in its Sunnyvale Workplace Design Lab. We anticipate a lively discussion regarding tying workplace design to employee engagement and productivity, as well as the methods and technology that LinkedIn uses to test different elements in workspace. We will be touring the Workplace Design Lab as well as nearby LinkedIn spaces: the 880 W. Maude facility that aims to be the first building in LinkedIn's global portfolio to achieve Net Zero Energy (NZE) certification; the 605 W. Maude facility designed as an engineering R&D facility; and for those interested, the company’s newest Global Security Operations Center.

Venue: LinkedIn: 845 W. Maude Avenue, Sunnyvale, CA 94085
Schedule: 3:30p: Registration // 4:00p: Program // 5:30p: Reception
Cost: Member: $35.00 // Non-Member End User: $60.00 // Non-Member Service Provider: $85.00


Featured Platinum Sponsors

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March Chapter Meeting



April Chapter Meeting 

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Golf Tournament Registration Opens May 13!