EMPATHY YIELDS A STRONG ADVOCATE FOR OUR PUBLIC CLIENTS
Laura Leigh Barrett brings unique perspective to her role as Senior Director.
With limited time and limited funds, we see more and more public entities seeking program management firms’ guidance to oversee the entire building process. This smart move protects the owners’ interests while creating a solid investment for years to come. With the many services offered, program management firms can assist with land acquisition, feasibility studies, master planning, funding, architect and contractor selection, contract negotiations, and more, putting owners in a great position to achieve their project goals. With a few notable program management firms out there, it can be hard to distinguish the differences. At Darden, we believe one of our differentiators is our people, and when it comes to the public market, Laura Leigh Barrett brings a deeper level of understanding of the challenges our owners face.
EMPATHY YIELDS A STRONG ADVOCATE
Serving as Project Director for many of Darden & Company’s public sector projects, Laura Leigh Barrett offers guidance to the team through a unique lens, one that is sensitive to the challenges faced by public entities of high expectations and limited budgets. For years, she sat in the project management role for the Georgia State Financing and Investment Commission (GSFIC) and Technical College System of Georgia (TCSG). Time spent with these public entities shaped her view of the industry and encouraged her leap to program management. Now, she dedicates her talents to helping public entities create the most value possible within their means by being a good steward of every dollar spent while maximizing program potential. Having managed millions of dollars of work throughout her career, she knows the capabilities of the contractors and architects in the market. She readily assists with vendor selection in a way that directly aligns with the project’s needs while inspiring a greater level of collaboration across the entire team through her long-standing relationships. As an owner advocate, she negotiates favorable contracts and outlines realistic budgets and schedules, which mitigate the risks associated with this type of work. And because she believes in the mission that public entities set forth, Laura Leigh works relentlessly to keep the project on-track from a budget and schedule perspective. Knowing first-hand the importance of the close-out process and successful hand-over to the facilities maintenance staff, she follows punchlist procedures and promotes thorough documentation and training.
Every step of the way, Laura Leigh advocates for the owner in a way that creates immediate and long-term value because she realizes that the chance to build or renovate in the public market seldom presents itself. And when it does, owners need to make the most of it.