Alison Punsalan awarded the John N. Gallagher Property Management Professional of the Year Award
“At the November 16 Past Presidents’ Awards Banquet, the John N. Gallagher Property Management Professional of the Year Award was presented to Alison Punsalan (Foulger-Pratt). The following are Alison’s remarks.
Thank you to PMA and the Board of Directors for this recognition. It is a bittersweet moment for me tonight, as my term on the Board ends this evening. It has been an honor to be a part of this group for the past two years – a Board that brings passion, energy and fun to the work at PMA.
Like many people here, I imagine, I sort of fell into this business. After graduation from Ohio State University with a degree in Finance, I had my eye on an exciting career in banking. Unfortunately, that summer after graduation the phone never rang.
As the summer dragged on, I soon found myself low on money. My dad convinced me that I needed to get out of the house.
So, I called a temp agency and was given an address to report to the next day. I still remember walking up to the property thinking, am I in the right place, this I not an office building? I check in at the front desk and was directed to the management office. My job was to answer phones and fill out a three-part form if anyone needed a repair. Fairly straightforward, I figured I could handle it.
Before long, the day of a busy management office took hold. A resident came in, threw her book bag in the chair and started complaining about her leaking window. The maintenance employees were in an out all day pulling keys, and the employees came by my desk and introduced themselves. I was hooked. I came back the next day and the next. It is hard to explain but looking back I just knew this was a good fit.
I didn’t last long answering phones. Before I knew it, I was a leasing agent, and from there I have been lucky enough to work in just about every role in the management track, spanning over four companies: assistant property manager, property manager, assistant regional supervisor, regional supervisor, vice president and my role today, senior vice president.
I would like to acknowledge a few important people who helped me along the way:
– Cathleen Paul, for taking a chance on a temp and hiring me as a leasing agent, I hope all of you pay it forward one day by convincing someone to work in Property Management.
– My best friend, Kathy Masterson (LCOR), PMA’s 2016 President. She hired me not once but twice and invited me to serve on the Board. She is one of the smartest people in this business, and I admire her amazing accomplishments year after year.
– Terry Phillips (Fairfield Residential), my former boss from Texas. She taught me to be tough, but also, about loyalty, execution, policy and team building.
I have been fortunate to have a long career in property management, but I have been even luckier to find a company to work for that fits my passion for this business. I would like to acknowledge my team at Foulger-Pratt who are here tonight. Through the leadership of Bryant Foulger and Cameron Pratt, we are a value-based company. All employees working at Foulger-Pratt live by six core values, and I would like to share two of them with you tonight.”