2021 GAHBA Installation and Awards Ceremony

The Greater Atlanta Home Builders Association (GAHBA) introduced and installed its newly elected officers and board members during the annual Installation & Awards Ceremony on Thursday, January 21, at the Hyatt Regency Atlanta Perimeter at Villa Christina. During the ceremony, Ken Warlick of Harrison Homes (pictured left), was installed as the 2021 GAHBA President, and was sworn in by GAHBA Executive Officer Corey Deal.

Ken has been around construction his entire life with his father working as a lumber salesman for 48 years. He has previously served the GAHBA in many capacities including the Dekalb/Rockdale Chapter President in 2018 and 2019, his active participation in the Government Affairs Committee, and his service on the Exec Committee these last 2 years. He won the spike award in 2018 for bringing in the most new members in a calendar year in addition to being one of the original Pinnacle Builder members in Atlanta achieved through 90% of his subcontractors being HBA members.

In addition to installing the 2021 board members, the GAHBA’s award winners for 2020 were also recognized during the ceremony:

Builder of the Year: Adams Homes

The Builder of the Year Award is presented each year to a member of the GAHBA who has both demonstrated a commitment to professional excellence while also making significant contributions to furthering the goals and mission of the association. This company has been a member of the association for nearly 15 years. In recent years, under the leadership of their Regional Manager, current GAHBA board member and former North Fulton Chapter President in 2019 and 2020, this builder company has been an active member across our association. Bill Lisecki, Adams Homes Regional Manager, has been a strong advocate for the Greater Atlanta Home Builders Association specifically regarding membership. Through his commitment to the association, he has managed to recruit thirty-three new members and was awarded the membership spike award for 2019. Adams Homes has been a loyal supporter of the Professional Women in Building Council as a Silver Sponsor and their Sales Manager, Judy Mapp, currently serves on the PWB board of directors. From the beginning, Adams Homes has participated in the annual Parade of Homes and in 2020 they entered nine beautiful homes into the Parade of Homes.

Associates of the Year: McMichael & Gray Attorneys at Law, O’Kelley & Sorohan Attorneys at Law

The Associate of the Year recognizes an associate member for their accomplishments in the areas of service to the industry and the GAHBA, professional excellence and community involvement, furthering the mission and goals of the association. Our first Associate of the Year is McMichael & Gray Attorneys at Law. Their core values include “go the extra mile”, “put people first” and “serve our community”. They have demonstrated each of these values as a member of the GAHBA. They have been a devoted member since 2009 and a corporate sponsor since its inception in 2017. Their current Director of Client Relations & Marketing served as the 2020 Atlanta Sales & Marketing Council Chairman and lead her council to not skip a beat during the turmoil that was 2020. They we able to successfully host SMC’s 40th annual OBIE Awards and Silent Auction/ Holiday Party which raised $11,000 for HomeAid Atlanta – the largest amount in recent years. This firm is an avid supporter and volunteer of HomeAid Atlanta – seeking out multiple Care Day projects and Essentials Drive volunteer opportunities. McMichael & Gray and their entire team have contributed countless hours and resources to our organization over the years.

Our second Associate of the Year is O’Kelley & Sorohan Attorneys at Law, actively serving, participating, and contributing time and resources to the various events and activities that take place through the GAHBA each year. They have been a dedicated member and sponsor for over 15 years and a corporate sponsor since 2019. Encouraging their employees to give back to their community and serve in various rolls is important to this firm – One of their attorneys is a past SMC chairman, and currently serves on the Home Builders Association of Georgia and GAHBA Board of Directors as well as the newly established Associates Council. Another attorney currently serves as Treasurer on the HomeAid Atlanta Board of Directors and has served on the Atlanta Sales & Marketing Council for the past two years as the OBIE Committee Co-Chair. Over the years, they have always been a reliable silent auction donor and supporter of HomeAid. Always eager to assist and support in any capacity.

Lewis Cenker Award: Michael Turner of Installation Made Easy

Established in 1984, the Lewis Cenker Award is the GAHBA’s most prestigious award honoring an individual’s lifetime achievements and their contributions to the advancement of the housing industry. This award is named in memory of one of the industry’s icons – Mr. Lewis Cenker who was President of the Association in 1960 & the only member of the GAHBA to serve as President of the National Association of Home Builders. Mike Turner built his first home when he was 9 years old. He has served his industry and professional associations, locally and nationally, for several decades. His involvement spans 30+ years from the team member originator of the GAHBA Homeowners Handbook to charter member and past chairman of the Atlanta and NAHB Remodelers Council. He is named Life Director both at NAHB and here at the GAHBA, a past president of the GAHBA as well as a current Remodelers Council board member. He has also worked on multiple Habitat for Humanity projects and has participated in numerous HomeAid Atlanta Care Day projects. Best described as genuine and loyal, our Lewis Cenker award winner has made a positive difference at the local, state and national levels of the housing industry and his contributions will be felt for generations to come.

Presidential Award: Tiffany Hogan of D.R. Horton Atlanta East Division

The Presidential Award is the only award presented at the discretion of the President, making it a special acknowledgement of an individual’s commitment and service to the HBA and the home building industry. Tiffany Hogan is an active member of the GAHBA Government Affairs Committee and in 2020, served as the Dekalb/Rockdale Chapter President and will serve in that capacity again this year. While her chapter was very successful in 2020, accumulating strong participation both in-person before the pandemic and virtually once we ventured to that platform. A major contribution was stepping in to serve and lobby that our industry be deemed essential, and working with local municipalities to take all of their processes virtual in order to keep the industry moving forward. Tiffany’s professionalism, work ethic, connections, and overall willingness to serve the greater good of the industry is the reason she is receiving the 2020 Presidential Award.

Presidential Award: Corey Deal, GAHBA Executive Officer

Our second Presidential Award is presented to Corey Deal who has served as the Executive Officer of the Greater Atlanta Home Builders Association since 2017. Corey has led the GAHBA to new heights with record membership growth in a short amount of time. He has implemented many new initiatives such as the “Chapter System” and the annual Parade of Homes. Under his leadership, the GAHBA Government Affairs Committee has developed stronger relationships with the municipalities in the GAHBA 9-county footprint. This has directly led to a stronger housing market for all builders in the Greater Atlanta area.

Council Chairman of the Year: Jennifer Landers of Serenbe

The Council Chairman of the Year is presented for outstanding excellence and member service. The GAHBA has five active, dynamic councils that provide education and networking opportunities for several of the diverse special interests of its members. Jennifer Landers is a past board member of the Sales & Marketing Council but has served the past four years on the 55+ Housing Council board. She is on the Board of Directors of the Greater Atlanta Home Builders Association and was Chairman of the 55+ Housing Council for the past two years where she helped grow our Atlanta Council to one of the biggest in the nation in terms of membership and revenue. She recently started a new job as Vice President & General Manager at Serenbe.

Chapter President of the Year: Maurice Lester of JW Collection

The Chapter President of the Year is presented for outstanding excellence and member service. There are currently seven chapters representing nine counties and the City of Atlanta that all provide educational and networking opportunities specific to those nine counties. Under the leadership of Maurice Lester, the Cobb/Cherokee Chapter held a record seven meetings, 4 virtual and 3 in-person, during the most challenging year we’ve faced in recent history. The three in-person meetings included a kickoff luncheon with 70 attendees with the Chief Building Official from Cobb County, Kevin Gobble and Cherokee County, Paul Laney as guest speakers; their annual Barrels Up event at the Governors Gun Club; and THE signature event of the year which was a Builder Panel of Past Presidents to cap off the GAHBA’s 75th anniversary. The panel featured – John Wieland, David Chatham, George McClure, David Clough and Jim Chapman all sharing their veteran industry knowledge. It was Maurice’s vision and leadership that allowed these invaluable programs to come together which added tremendous value to the HBA members — especially those doing business in Cobb and Cherokee County.

Spike Award Winner: Maurice Lester of JW Collection

The Spike Award is presented to the member who has the most recorded number of new members throughout the calendar year. Maurice Lester worked hard in 2020 to recruit 7 new members. Within the HBA he has served as President of the Cobb/Cherokee Chapter and has been a huge proponent of the OBIE Awards, especially in 2020 when his company took home 5 Gold OBIE Awards and a Community of the Year. Maurice’s effort along with that of the GAHBA staff and board members is what enabled the HBA to have a solid year in 2020.

Grand Sponsor: Atlanta’s Best New Homes Show Cocktail Sponsors: BankSouth Mortgage, Brand Vaughan Lumber Supporting Sponsors: 2 – 10 Home Buyers Warranty, Arrow Exterminators, Centricity, Coastal States Bank, Construction Resources, Engel & Volkers, New American Funding, Pella Window and Door of Georgia, Pestban, Sutter, McClellan and Gilbreth.