Lyoung Member Spotlight

03 Nov, 2013

Past President Spotlight: Lauren Myers Young

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Lauren_Myers_YoungWith over 15 years of experience in business development, marketing and public relations in the architecture / engineering / construction industry, Lauren Myers Young has been involved in all aspects of marketing and business development. She has a thorough understanding of marketing and business development functions in the institutional, corporate and multi-family housing sectors. In addition, she possesses a strategic understanding of the AEC market and key issues that drive the commercial real estate industry. Lauren’s job responsibilities have included targeting and meeting with new clients, maintaining current relationships and overseeing the preparation of proposals, presentations and marketing materials. Currently she serves as the Business Development Associate at BKV Group, a full-service architectural, interior design, engineering and construction admiration firm. With offices in DC, Chicago and Minneapolis, she was brought on to help grow a new, local office. Her former employers include RTKL Associates, Inc. and Little Diversified Architectural Consulting.

How has SMPS helped shape your career? My SMPS connections have helped me find the best pursuit teammates and potential target clients. The society’s educational programs have further developed my marketing skills to help me be better at my job.

How did you get started in the A/E/C industry? After graduating with a master degree in public relations, I took the first job that came my way: a marketing coordinator at GIS, a mapping and surveying company in Gainesville, FL. They said I could write their newsletters and press releases, but it was primarily a proposal writing position because there was never enough time for additional PR! When I relocated to DC a year later, Alison Carney told me to attend the SMPS End of Year bash. Rose Dela Vega was among the many great people I met, and she immediately hired me to work for her at RTKL.

Mentor(s) you most admired and why? I have been incredibly fortunate to mentor under two fabulous women, both of whom have greatly influenced my career. Rose DelaVega hired me as a very green marketing coordinator at RTKL. She was tough, but fair, and an incredible leader both in her role as a VP at RTKL and within the AEC community. Rose placed a high level of importance on teaching and encouraging the younger generation of professionals. There is a large network of “Rosettes” and “Rosebuds”, a nickname for her many mentees, that still draw upon her lessons in our day-to-day work. Rose encouraged me to always take interviews, as a way of expanding my network and knowing my value, and actually pushed me to take another job as a way of growing my career and branching out of the marketing coordinator role.

Carol Rickard-Brideau, Partner at Little Diversified Architectural Consulting, is my other mentor. She is smart, positive and a lot of fun to work with. She created an office environment that really engaged the staff, empowering everyone to tap into our strengths, and gave us tremendous credit for project wins and other office successes. Both Carol and Rose cared about the people they worked with, creating positive work environments.

Do you have any advice for the younger members in the A/E/C industry? Make industry friends and use them as your sounding board for career advice. Don’t be in too much of a hurry to take on a senior role. If you’re good - you will get there!

What would you consider your greatest achievement during your term as SMPS DC’s President? When I took over we actually had a negative balance in our bank account. With the assistance of a great board, strong programs and an appropriate event pricing structure, we ended the year in strong financial shape and were able to use some of the money to give back to the community.

Interview by: Shaylee Carmona SHW Group