DBIA Honors Three Industry Leaders with 2023 Distinguished Leadership Awards

Three Winners Include Industry Practitioner, Owner and Young Professional

The Design-Build Institute of America (DBIA) is honored to announce Linnell Stanhope, DBIA; Kathy Tuznik, DBIA; and Nick Ulliman, PE, MBA, DBIA, as the winners of the 2023 Distinguished Leadership Awards. Awardees were nominated by their peers and judged on their achievements in furthering the understanding and use of the design-build project delivery method.

Design-build has shifted from an alternative approach to a mainstream delivery method –– approaching one-half of all construction spending –– thanks to the dedication of leaders like Stanhope, Tuznik and Ulliman. Distinguished Leadership Award winners are committed to advocating for Design-Build Done Right® and promoting design-build as a procurement approach of choice.

Meet the 2023 Distinguished Leadership Award Winners

Linnell Stanhope, DBIA –– Industry Practitioner

Linnell Stanhope has been a driving force in promoting, educating and influencing the adoption of design-build practices across the Midwest, Mid-Atlantic and Southeast regions. With Crowder Construction since 2007 and CAS Construction before that, Stanhope is unwavering in her dedication to design-build for the past three decades. In 2010, she worked with DBIA to develop and enact North Carolina Legislation enabling design-build. Stanhope was awarded the prestigious Select Society of Sanitary Sludge Shovelers (5S) award in 2019 from NC One Water, honoring her contributions to the industry. As a founding member of the DBIA Carolinas Chapter and the DBIA Central Virginia Chapter, she has played a crucial part in influencing the future of design-build in these regions and continues to serve on the Boards and Committees of DBIA National and Local Chapters.

Kathy Tuznik, DBIA –– Owner

As a lawyer, Kathy Tuznik has advocated for drafting fair and reasonable legal terms to ensure successful design-build programs. Tuznik is the Senior Deputy General Counsel at the NYC Department of Design and Construction. She was instrumental in crafting new processes for procuring and awarding design-build contracts and helped produce a design-build agreement that embodies DBIA’s principles, now widely used in New York City. Her leadership helped the city embrace the use of design-build and created a seismic shift in the city’s ability to deliver projects. Tuznik is a foremost contributor to the development and implementation of NYC’s multi-billion-dollar design-build Borough-Based Jail (BBJ) program, the largest vertical program of its kind in the country. She continues to be the ultimate team player in her multidimensional role as legal counsel, facilitator and advisor for NYC’s design-build projects.

Nick Ulliman, PE, MBA, DBIA –– Young Professional

Nick Ulliman is a true design-build and DBIA advocate. As a Senior Project Manager at Ulliman Schutte Construction, his work has earned him several awards, including the Kentucky Society of Professional Engineers (KSPE) award for Outstanding Contributions in Construction. He successfully managed the Louisville MSD Southwestern Parkway CSO Storage Basin Project, which won DBIA’s 2019 Design-Build National Award of Excellence in the category of Water/Wastewater. Ulliman understands the mindset shift needed to make project collaboration successful and establishes a collaborative environment with his team by engaging all project members to find creative solutions throughout design and construction. He demands quality products and value-driven solutions and negotiates with the intent of fair outcomes for all parties.

The Distinguished Leadership Award winners will be honored at the 2023 Design-Build Conference & Expo Awards Dinner & Ceremony on Nov. 2, along with the nation’s best design-build projects and teams, this year’s class of DBIA Fellows and the Brunelleschi Lifetime Achievement Award winner William G. “Bill” Hasbrook.

The Design-Build Institute of America is the nation’s expert on design-build project delivery. Our members – including architects, engineers, owners, contractors, manufacturers and more – are shaping the future, one successful collaboration at a time by practicing Design-Build Done Right®.

The Design-Build Institute of America
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