Several real estate industry leaders were amongst the dozens of Canadians who earned prestigious honours at both the federal and provincial level this past week.
The Order of Canada and the Order of Ontario represent two of the highest honours a Canadian can receive from the federal and provincial governments. The awards are given annually to Canadians, and Ontarians, who have made extraordinary contributions to their country, province, or even local neighbourhood, with recipients ranging from human rights activists to artists to historians.
With such a diversity of honourees, the real estate industry certainly made a good showing, with seven leaders whose specialties range from architecture to development to construction being inducted into the prestigious orders.
Below are the seven real estate industry appointees.
Order of Canada Appointees
Based in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Richard Kroeker is a leading Canadian architect who’s known for incorporating both Indigenous and Western artistic elements into his work. His designs have come to life both close to home, in his home province of Nova Scotia, and around the world, including England and Botswana.
Osama El-Sayed Moselhi
Professor and Director of the Centre for Innovation in Construction and Infrastructure Engineering and Management at Concordia University, Dr. Moselhi was recognized for his groundbreaking contributions to the field of construction engineering and management. In his over 40-year career, Dr. Moselhi has worked on tall buildings, nuclear power plants, and bridges, and has served as a consultant on construction projects in Canada, the US, and the Middle East.
Government of British Columbia
Carol Anne Lee
Credited for much of the revitalization of Vancouver’s Chinatown, Carol Anne Lee has worked tirelessly to save it from death by gentrification. She is the founder of the Vancouver Chinatown Foundation, which has spearheaded a 10-storey affordable housing project, purchased and restored the May Wah Hotel and launched the Chinatown Storytelling Centre to preserve the old stories of Chinese immigrants. She is also a restauranteur, having opened the nostalgic diner, Chinatown BBQ, serving familiar food that is affordable to seniors.
Order of Ontario
John M. Beck
There’s no doubt that John M. Beck has left his stamp on Canada. As the founder of Aecon Group, John M. Beck was the driving force behind the construction of many of Canada’s most iconic landmarks like the CN Tower, the St. Lawrence Seaway, the Vancouver Skytrain, and Trudeau International Airport. He’s also an active supporter of many foundations and charities, helping to improve the lives of his fellow Canadians.
Julie Di Lorenzo/Linkedin
Julie Di Lorenzo
In an industry that lacks female leaders, Julie Di Lorenzo is a standout, heading up real estate development firm Mirabella Development Corp.. Her focus is on reinvigorating neighbourhoods with buildings that improve residents’ lives and are eco-friendly. Serving as a member of the Ontario Housing Affordability Task Force, she is helping the Government of Ontario achieve its goal of building more homes.
As President and CEO of OMERS, Blake Hutcheson is known for being the dynamic driving force behind the public pension fund as well as its real estate arm, Oxford Properties. Expertly managing over $124B in assets, Hutcheson has played a large role in creating thousands of jobs through OMERS’ real estate investments. The Government of Ontario also highlights his passion for giving back to the community, having raised millions of dollars for the less fortunate.
Shiplake Properties is one of Ontario’s most successful family-owned real estate development firms, and Michael Latner oversees its operations as CEO. He is known for having created jobs, driving innovation, and making transformational investments in local business. In his previous role at Dynacare Laboratories, he played a key part in developing Fallsview Casino.