Stars to Watch 2015: Lauren Staniec

CPE0215_stars_Staniec_LaurenSustainability Coordinator and Enhancement Project Manager, Pyramid Management Group

 Most Proud Of: Destiny USA, Pyramid Management Group’s 2.4 million-square-foot shopping and entertainment destination in Syracuse, N.Y., is the largest LEED Gold-certified retail commercial building in the world, and Staniec was instrumental in obtaining the title. She also considers serving as a speaker at several sessions at last year’s GreenBuild conference one of the highlights of her career, as well as helping to forge a relationship between Pyramid and the USGBC. “That they feel like they can call on us to share our experiences—good, bad or ugly—has been really great,” Staniec added.

Secrets to Success: Putting in the hours. “You can’t punch a clock. You’ve got to get in early, and leaving at 5:00 is not the way that you get noticed.”

Greatest Challenges: Convincing the green-shy to take the next step in sustainability. “Sustainability is still new to a lot of people. Appealing to some of the larger retailers and having them be OK with a lease requirement of becoming LEED certified, helping them go through the process when maybe they might not want to, that’s been one challenge.”

Best Advice Received: “Never, never, never give up.” She takes her cue from Winston Churchill: “You always have to look for another avenue. Just never accepting no, finding another way, finding another path.”

Advice to Others: Don’t reject an idea out of hand on a client’s behalf. “You should always ask the question. Even if it seems unreasonable, ask the question. Things that might seem unreasonable to you may not necessarily seem unreasonable to others.”

—Barbra Murray

CPE selected 17 individuals and teams as the 2015 Stars to Watch. Details on their accomplishments appear in the February 2015 issue.