The General Contractors Association of Ottawa (GCAO) has named Dave Burley from Defence Construction Canada (DCC) as its 2019 Integrity and Ethics Award winner.
Burley, DCC’s national service line leader, contract management and real property management services, is a rare time an owner’s representative has been named for the award, said GCAO first vice-president Bruce Norman. “Our past recipients have been great architects, construction people and suppliers, but this is one of the rare occasions where we have handed out an award to an owner/client representative,” Norman said.
He said the association received letters of recommendation recommending Burley for the award from “many industry colleagues, architects, subcontractors and general contractors.”
“Many (of) us in the Ottawa area have crossed paths with Dave in our dealings with our DCC projects,” Norman said. “He (Burley) also sits on a few industry committees where our local representatives have had exposure and further interaction. Whether dealing with Dave at DCC or on various committees, both confirm Dave’s style of management is well deserving of the award.”
Norman said Burley’s conduct when “under fire”, when conflicts or disputes arise, has proven him worthy of the award.
“David’s approach to solving issues on projects always included decisions based on facts, fairness and all parties, and high degree of integrity,” Tim Pruner of M. Sullivan and Sons said in his letter of recommendation.
Others echoed support for the nomination.
“Dave has consistently shown a strong desire to be fair, reasonable and possess a willingness to act as a true partner,” said Erin Matthews of PCL Constructors.
“It has become abundantly clear to me, from the very outset, that Dave looked and weighed all facts form the perspective of all stakeholders and advocated for a fair allocation of responsibilities and risks,” wrote Serge Massicote of Massicote Construction. “Never once (was he) advocating only from the perspective of (the) owner.”
Norman said in presenting the award that “we are in an industry that has become more challenging over the years and can be very positional based in some aspects.”
“Even with strong relationships it becomes hard to detach oneself from becoming emotionally charged when a powder keg of disagreements is lit,” he said. “What Dave has managed to display is something we all strive to emulate. Something our other clients, our members, our sub/trade supplier and consultant partners should also strive to emulate . . . and of course ourselves.”
Norman said that despite Burley’s collaborative and fair minded approach, no one should consider him to be a “pushover”.
Dave will meet dishonest or unscrupulous behaviour head-on and will not back down, even when it gets messy,” said John Moore of J.L. Richards. “So, in short, you would lose this battle with Dave – in a most inglorious way,” said Norman.
The GCAO’s Integrity and Ethics Award has been granted since 1999 and was presented at Rideau Club reception on April 3.