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Donation to Heat Up St. Louis provides funds to help those in need

St. Louis, MO – Jan. 6, 2021 – The St. Louis Chapter of the International Facility Management Association (IFMA) made another donation to Heat Up St. Louis. Representing facility managers and suppliers who maintain the region’s commercial buildings, IFMA St. Louis presented a check for $1,000 to Heat Up St. Louis.

The nonprofit organization builds awareness and provides resources to help those in need, especially the elderly and disabled, and needy families with critically ill children, avoid illnesses and deaths during the area’s bitter winter season.

“We know that many in our community need support especially during these difficult times,” said Scott Held, president of IFMA St. Louis. “Unfortunately, as the need increases, we also know that the organization’s donations have decreased. This makes this year’s donations even more critical to Heat Up/Cool Down St. Louis. We know our support will make a difference in so many lives,” Held noted.

IFMA St. Louis also funds the organization’s Cool Down St. Louis, which provides services and support to keep residents cool during the hot summer months.

IFMA St. Louis has supported the weather-related assistance programs for the past seven years. The nonprofit organization helps defray the cost of energy to heat and cool residences. More than 660,000 area residents have been impacted by its services since its inception in 2000.


Recycle with a Purpose

Tired of storing those old desks, chairs, computers and more? Have waste from a construction project or equipment replacement? Don’t want to add to landfills?

There’s a solution with an even higher purpose. Our chapter has partnered with Operation Food Search to turn Furniture and Metal to Food in a unique recycling program.

Becker Iron & Metal or Warehouse of Fixtures will pick up your old furniture and metal and remove the materials that can be recycled and repurposed. A share of the proceeds then goes to Operation Food Search, an organization that helps feed 200,000 people in our region every month.

The need to feed people is great, even more so during these challenging times. Be a part of the solution. You avoid the storage fees. You save time and labor. You keep all that waste out of our landfills. And, most importantly, you help feed the hungry.

Join the fight to help your neighbors while cleaning out your facility. For more information, contact Skip Spielberg, OFS Board Member, at (314) 568-2320 or [email protected], or Erin Wright of OFS at (314) 451-1952 or [email protected].


Members Focus on Challenges of Pandemic

Whether its minimizing disruptions while trying to stay open, reviewing the HVAC systems and increasing outside air, or navigating COVID guidelines, facility managers are facing perhaps the biggest challenges in their careers. Nearly 40 members and guests joined the spirited discussion on meeting these challenges during the virtual program on Oct. 21.

The Zoom meeting demonstrated the value of membership as four panelists shared their look at several issues and the lessons they have learned during these troubling times.

Michael Wright with Ameren reviewed considerations on minimizing disruptions to facilities and sites. Chief considerations and challenges included bringing people, especially visitors, into buildings and organizing in-person meetings while providing for social distancing. FMs also need to monitor their facilities to determine where to focus cleaning and potentially sanitizing areas.

Dave Gardin with Kindred Healthcare noted that his facilities limit visiting hours from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., with one visitor allowed to stay for one hour. Masks are mandatory, with temperature checks before entering the facility. Additionally, he recommended that all visitors enter and exit one way in and out.

As for the rules, panelists agreed that employees and subcontractors must follow all safety guidelines. Failure to comply results in reprimands, and subcontractors can be banned from future work if they do not follow the guidelines.

Much attention has been placed on HVAC systems and airflow to lessen harmful particles from hanging in the air. Jeff Touchette with Jarrell Mechanical Contractors cautioned that FMs need to consider a facilities’ building automation system to help with minimizing the COVID risk. This includes looking at the filters used, along with ionization technology and UV light to further limit particles that spread the virus.

FMs also face ethical and moral issues in managing their buildings and the impact on employees. Gary Wood, with Stryker Construction noted that COVID guidelines contain major loopholes so it really challenges FMs to do everything possible to protect their facilities and employees. Quarantine rules come into question when employees may have had second- or third-hand exposure to the virus. Decisions need to be made as well when employees who may have had contact with someone with the virus can be sent to job sites.

Practical matters included buildings that simply do not have the proper equipment to circulate air efficiently and effectively. Filters need to be changed more frequently, with a recommendation to move from a quarterly to monthly change of at least a Merv 13 filter.


2020 IFMA Golf Classic - We finally Link Up!

After months of staying apart, we finally had an opportunity to gather members, industry colleagues and friends. Yes, golf in the great outdoors proved to be the best medicine to finally find a way to network, foster friendship, and share stories of surviving the pandemic in person and not on a Zoom session!

The 2020 IFMA Golf Outing at Tapawingo National Golf Club on Sept. 25 drew a crowd and certainly some laughs and stress relief for more than 200 golfers at the sold-out event. Mother Nature even understood, giving us blue skies, a calming breeze and absolutely gorgeous temperatures that hovered between 60 and 80 degrees. In short, a fantastic day and a great way to reconnect safely after so many days apart.

Our golfers found the fairways and greens up to par and beyond at Tapawingo. We had several winners and contests that showcased their skills:

Winning Teams
Woodland & Prairie Flight:             Kozeny, Kozeny and Harris – 61
Prairie & Meramec Flight:               Dragovich, Lane, Fernandez and Williams – 61
Meramec & Woodlands Flight:      Whiteside, Randazzo, Moss and Crain – 63

Closet to the Pin
Atel Khan - #6 Woodlands
Tim Stoehner - #2 Prairie
Dave Gralike - #3 Meramec

Long Drive
Lisa Prokopf - #7 Woodlands
Sandy Timme - #3 Prairie
Chrissy Rogers - #5 Meramec

Chris Kozeny - #7 Woodlands
Mitch Miller - #3 Prairie
Alex Whiteside - #5 Meramec

Skins Game ($200 per team)
Woodside, Tramelli, Fox and Baur with an Eagle on #1 Meramec
Kozeny, Kozeny and Harris with and Eagle on #9 Prairie

Raffle Winners
Todd Donald, Basket with Artic cooler and bottles of spirits (OK, booze)
Kelly Kordick, SERVPro of Oakville/Mehlville and Kevin Renaud, Kay Bee Electric - Early Bird Registration, $100 Top Golf gift cards

Golfers teed off at 9 a.m. and received a box lunch while on the course. We had to forgo the traditional networking hour after the rounds ended but everyone received Chick-fil-A sandwiches after a day on the course.

And no one went thirsty or hungry during the day with several hole sponsors manning tents that served beverages, tasty treats and more. Thanks to our networking hole sponsors:

  • ABM
  • BELFOR Property Restoration
  • BrightView Landscapes
  • Focal Point Outdoor Solutions
  • Growing Green
  • Missouri Petroleum Products
  • Woodard
  • SERVPro of Oakville/Mehlville
  • SBM

We also give a special shout-out to our generous Platinum Partner Sponsors:

  • KONE Elevator
  • Elite Cuisine
  • Kozeny Wagner
  • SERVPro of Oakville/Mehlville
  • Waste Connections

And hats off to our 2020 Golf Classic Gold Sponsors:

  • Castel Contracting
  • Kimball/Working Spaces

We could not offer this annual tournament or the chapter’s yearly activities without the financial support of these sponsors. Matt Huelsing deserves credit for his tireless efforts as our Sponsorship Chair.  

Lastly, the tournament took the hard work of so many members who volunteered their time and talent. Many special thanks to Andrew Dillard, Chair, and Vance Scherrer, Co-Chair, and the entire Golf Committee, for their perseverance during these challenging times.

Here's to next year when we meet again on the links. Let’s hope we can do so without any worries of linking up!