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Webinar: Re-Occupying Buildings During COVID-19


This webinar, presented on Wednesday, May 13th, 2020, featured a panel of facilities and automation experts to discuss what strategies they and their organizations were implementing to ensure the safe return to facilities in the coming months.

The expert panelists in this webinar include:

Doug Palmer

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Hines, Orange County
General Engineering Manager

Doug Palmer has spent 28 years in various facilities management roles where he has become an expert on energy management systems, property acquisition and disposition, and talent development. Doug started off his career as a Facility Engineer for Costco Wholesale, where he worked for 10 years. He then spent the next 7 years as a business owner and developer of specialized water recovery and filtration systems used in the oil and restaurant industries.

For the last 18 years, Doug has been a leader in commercial property operations and management in Southern California, the majority of which he has spent as a Regional Certified Engineering Manager for Hines Real Estate Investment Trust. Palmer is currently serving on the R2O (Return to Office) task force for Hines which is focused on returning tenants safely to their buildings worldwide.

David Handwork

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Arkansas State University
Assistant Vice Chancellor of Facilities

David Handwork was named the Arkansas State University Assistant Vice Chancellor of Facilities in May of 2016.  Prior, he worked in the position of Director of Planning Design and Construction (Apr ‘11 to Sept ‘15) and the Director of Engineering Services (Sept ‘01 to Apr ‘11).  Under David’s leadership, the campus energy management controls were consolidated under a single system, with all new installations and programming managed with A-State staff.  Another key accomplishment is the installation of a district chilled water system from scratch.  As director of Planning Design and Construction, David managed over $160 million of new construction and renovations from 2012 to 2015, including the 132,000 gross square feet of Humanities and Social Sciences Building, and 119,000 gross square feet of football stadium and indoor practice facility expansion. 

David’s 25 years of professional experience includes major capital construction management in higher education and food processing, engineering design, and management of multiple teams of professionals.  His professional leadership in ASHRAE, APPA, CAPPA, and other organizations is a testament of commitment to advancing and promoting the field of facilities management. 

Handwork is a Registered Professional Engineer, earning a bachelor’s degree in Agricultural Engineering from Arkansas State University, and a master’s degree in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Arkansas.

Beyond David’s professional accomplishments, he is most proud of and dedicated to his family comprised of his wife of 29 years Jada, and two sons, Spencer and Wesley, pursuing professional medical and public service careers to serve mankind.

Ron Zimmer

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Continental Automated Buildings Association
President & CEO

Mr. Zimmer joined CABA in 1997 working with industry leaders who promote integrated systems and home/building automation throughout the world. CABA’s members include manufacturers, dealers, installers, service providers, energy utilities, builders, consultants, research organizations, publishers, educational institutions, governments, associations, and content providers.

In addition to working closely with the CABA Board of Directors, Ron is actively involved with a number of industry committees/councils including the CABA Intelligent Buildings Council, CABA Connected Home Council, and the Automation Federation Board of Directors. He is also on the Advisory Board for IBcon, an intelligent buildings conference hosted by Realcomm. He is also on the Advisory Board of the International Federation for High Rise Structures 2019 Conference in Singapore. During an AHR Expo, Ron was recently appointed to the 2018 ControlTrends Hall of Fame. In June 2019, he was recognized with the Top 50 Most Impactful Smart Cities Leaders Award.

He was instrumental in establishing the CABA XML and Web Services Committee (oBIX), which now resides with OASIS. He was also on the transition team that integrated the Internet Home Alliance into CABA, which became CABA’s Connected Home Research Council.

Ron is a Certified Association Executive with over 30 years of Association Management experience.  He has authored a number of articles and documents including, “Smart Communities: A Concept Paper,” and he regularly makes presentations on integrated buildings and home/building automation at many international industry events.

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