Bridging the Gap Between Vision and Implementation

For Louise Gibson, this year’s Honorary Life Membership Award recipient, the best part of the land development industry is its people.

“They are relationship-people who want to work together towards finding solutions.”

Louise, who started her career as a planner with the Province of Alberta and City of Edmonton, would later join Carma Developers (subsequently Brookfield Residential) in 1998 – where she was instrumental in the visioning, master planning and development of Terwillegar Towne, Summerside, and The Orchards.

She credits the industry’s close-knit culture as part of her success.

“Whether it’s the builder, the contractors, the consultants or the competition – they help you to be successful in your business,” she said.

She joined the industry because she was interested in bridging the gap between high-level policy and implementation.

And when a job offer from Carma’s president, Doug Kelly, came knocking – she took it.

“As the planner working on Carma’s Terwillegar Towne, Doug said that he felt I knew that development better than anyone else,” she recalled.

“So, I took the job, and had an opportunity to build something. Planners don’t always get to do that.”

When asked about a fond memory in her career, she recalled a pontoon boat at Summerside.

“When we had our opening for Summerside, we brought in a pontoon boat and let guests see the community from the lake,” she recalled. “This grand opening was a highlight of my career. Summerside was the first project I planned from its beginning. I saw it through to construction and near completion.”

She said that all the people who helped – private and public planners, engineers, contractors, councillors, and residents – attended the event. It was a testimony to the many people that come together to make a project happen.

On November 5, come celebrate Louise and her achievements at the 23rd Annual Spirit Awards.