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LEADERSHIP LUNCH: Risky Business - What Marketing Leaders Need to Know to Position Their Firms in the High-Risk A/E/C Environment

The design and construction industry is hugely complex and inherently uncertain. Projects are unique in terms of program, site, budget, schedule, and client goals. Identification, assessment, prioritization, and management of risk is often overlooked by leaders in our industry, opening firms to professional liability. Contracts are the cornerstone of our business, so better understanding of contractual liabilities, legal exposure created under contract, and knowledge of what to do when contract disputes arise, can help limit this exposure. This panel discussion will educate marketing leaders on risk and help them become better champions for risk management best practice.

After attending this presentation, participants will be able to...

  • Identify common A/E/C contractual mistakes
  • Understand rules of thumb for limiting liability
  • Become knowledgeable about risk mitigation resources available to all firms
  • Summarize A/E/C staff responsibilities in the risk management process


Karolyn Gardner

Vice President and Executive Director of Contracts


Ms. Gardner provides the overall leadership and oversight for Dewberry’s client contract reviews, subcontract management, and proposal pricing support as well as developing and streamlining processes and procedures for the firm’s risk management and corporate governance. Ms. Gardner’s experience spans both the public- and private-sectors identifying and managing risks for a wide range of services, such as engineering, training, security, construction, design-build, consulting, environmental remediation, information technology, and facilities management.


Joseph Dennis

General Council


Joseph Dennis is Arup General Counsel for the Americas region. He is responsible for managing Arup’s legal portfolio throughout the United States. In addition to implementing the firm’s risk management program, Joseph interacts with outside counsel and insurance carriers; implements firm-wide seminars on contract review and best practices; and reviews client generated design services and construction division contracts.


Michael De Chiara

Co-Founding Partner

Zetlin & De Chiara

Known for strategic thinking, Michael De Chiara is one of the pre-eminent construction lawyers in the country. He is highly regarded in the area of construction contract negotiation and drafting, and has drafted owner-contractor agreements for construction budgets up to $850 million on behalf of New York City’s most prominent real estate owners. Michael serves as the General Counsel for the American Institute of Architects, New York State and the American Council of Engineering Companies of New York.


Kyle Fisher

Associate Principal


Kyle Fisher is currently an associate principal at Arup. She is the Marketing and Business Development Leader for Arup’s New York office and serves as the knowledge manager and systems and data leader for the Americas region. Based in New York, she guides the group’s marketing, business development, and communications team, with a focus on strategic positioning and facilitating best practice. With over 18 years of experience on the A/E/C industry, she has worked in marketing and business development in both the United States and China. Kyle is a CPSM and holds a BA from Brown University and a MArch from Rice University.

Maximize Your Exposure: Sponsor This Event

Download information on sponsoring this event here (.pdf). Contact Brian C. Ferry at to become a sponsor today.


Contact Rhonda Cardone, SMPS-NY Director of Leadership, at for questions about this event.

When & Where

  • 10/24/2017
  • 12:00 pm - 2:00 pm

  • iGuzzini Showroom
  • 60 Madison Avenue, 2nd Floor
  • New York, NY 10010
  • MAP

Registration & Pricing

  • $60.00   SMPS or AIA Member Registration
  • $80.00   Non-Member Registration
  • register now!