Stirling exec receives award
New Orleans Lewis Stirling, executive VP/partner of Stirling Properties, was presented with the 2009 Renovator’s Award this month at the Garden District Association’s 70th Annual Membership Meeting on behalf of Stirling Forterra, LLC.
The award was for the renovation of the former Bultman Funeral Home into the new Border’s bookstore located on Saint Charles Avenue in New Orleans.
The Garden District Association is a nonprofit, neighborhood organization dedicated to improving the Garden District of New Orleans.
The redevelopment of a once historic funeral home into a 24,000-sq.-ft. Border’s bookstore involved close attention to historical preservation. “The building could have been demolished, but through working closely with the Preservation Resource Center and the Historic Districts and Landmark Commission, Stirling Properties was able to preserve and revitalize a true icon of New Orleans,” Stirling said.
Covington, La.-based Stirling Properties is a regional real estate firm whose portfolio includes 12 million sq. ft. of managed property and 14 million sq. ft. of properties for sale or lease.
It will all be over soon
This is the week. Target’s annual meeting is scheduled for Thursday, which means a resolution is at hand in the proxy battle over whether four existing board members should retain their seats or be replaced by an alternate slate of directors, as proposed by Bill Ackman with Pershing Square Capital Management. What began as a fairly civil matter has in recent weeks has become less so, with both sides making their case in strongly worded statements that has put Target on the defensive as it attempts to counter Ackman’s charges regarding board members qualifications, their business acumen and the company’s interpretation of corporate governance.
Most recently, Pershing Square accused Target of failing to comply with its own governance guidelines, and, as evidence of that assertion, cited an article from 1984 in the Harvard Business Review in which Kenneth Dayton, one of the company’s founding family members, said board members should resign after 12 years of service or when they reach 65. According to Pershing Square, Target nominees Solomon Trujillo and Anne Mulcahy should step down immediately because of a change in their employment status. Target contends the move is another attempt at misdirection by Pershing Square and said Ackman didn’t read the company’s corporate governance documents and further accused him of shameful attacks on board members.
The back and forth between the two sides for the past several months has been confusing to say the least, with shareholders challenged to separate fact from fiction and ask themselves whether Ackman represents change they can believe in. Target has issued 10 press releases on the subject since the beginning of March, and while Ackman has distributed nearly as many, he has been more aggressive in the use of national media and the Internet, appearing on CNBC and orchestrating Web cast meetings.
Borders names two new IT execs
ANN ARBOR, Mich. Borders Group announced two appointments within its Information Technology group: Scott Laverty, CIO, and Paul Devitt, director, e-commerce Systems.
Prior to joining Borders Group, Laverty was a partner with IBM for two years where he was the SAP retail practice leader for the United States and directed programs for leading cosmetic and optical retailers. From 2001 through 2006, he was a senior manager with Deloitte Consulting where he was the North American Oracle Retail practice leader, which included project management for a variety of retailers, including a leading bookseller, home building and supplies retailer, furniture merchant and an office supplies and services retailer, among others.
At Borders, Laverty is responsible for the overall vision, strategic direction and tactical execution of all information technology systems and solutions that support the company’s business operations, which include approximately 1,000 Borders and Waldenbooks stores, the Borders.com e-commerce site, and the company’s distribution facilities and corporate headquarters.
Before joining Borders Group, Devitt was senior manager of e-commerce technologies at Circuit City for three years, where he managed Web development, contact center infrastructure and cross-channel integration for circuitcity.com. From 2001 through 2006, Devitt worked for Capital One in a variety of management roles including leading IT teams within operations, risk management and information security.
At Borders, Devitt oversees the design, architecture and implementation efforts for the company’s e-commerce systems ensuring that they are aligned with the organization’s business priorities and meet key functional, technical, cost and operational requirements.