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Rowlett Lecture

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2019 World-renowned developer Hines featured at the Rowlett Lecture

Building Teams, Making Places, and Creating Value encapsulates the theme of the 2019 Rowlett Lecture, held at the Annenberg Conference Center at Texas A&M University on February 8, 2019 in conjunction with the 4th Annual AGGIE Leadership in Community Development Conference. Leaders from Hines, the well-known international real estate investment and development firm based in Houston, presented their insights about how a company can continuously produce work of enduring value over 60 years. Speeches by Tom Owens, ’73, Senior Managing Director and Chief Risk Officer, Jerold P. Lea, Hon. AIA, LEED* AP and Executive Vice President of Conceptual Construction, and Charlie Kunz, Innovation Officer, introduced an audience of students, faculty, and professionals to the principles and concepts upon which Hines has achieved success.

“Land and property development is the decisive moment in the creation of enduring value”, explained Dr. Mark J. Clayton, Director of the CRS Center, in opening remarks, suggesting that the lecture would be valuable to all students in the College of Architecture.

Mr. Owens began the presentation by stating that “Our vision is to be the best real estate investor, partner and manager in the world.” He explained how Hines is a fully integrated development business tuned directly to the needs of the tenants and users of its real estate. Thinking outside the box is a key to creating enduring value and beating the competition.

Mr. Lea continued the lecture with a focus on the Conceptual Construction Group. Attributing the idea to Gerald Hines, Mr. Lea said that “Every building we build … has to set the quality benchmark of all the buildings in that city.” He further pointed out the importance of design, stating that successful design equals success for the owner. Thorough fundamental analysis should not only address first cost, operating cost, and life cycle cost, but also marketability and sustainability. In recent years, occupant experience has become of paramount importance – the building has its biggest impact through employee recruiting, employee productivity, and employee retention.

Hines maintains its leadership through innovation to respond to the constant of change. Mr. Charlie Kuntz explained his role in tracking and examining the viability of innovative design, building, and real estate technology. In the real estate industry, one must be constantly innovating to respond to constantly changing needs and opportunities.

Mr. Bill Peel, ‘ 74, Outstanding Alumni of the College of Architecture and Executive Director of Innovation and Strategic Planning at the Mays Business School, moderated a subsequent question and answer session.

Dr. Jorge Vanegas, Dean of the College of Architecture, complimented the speakers for offering inspiration to the college community and thanked the guests for sharing the Hines pursuit of excellence and enduring value and offering.

The Rowlett Lecture is presented every year by the CRS Center in honor of John Rowlett, who was, along with Bill Caudill, Wallie Scott, and William M. Peña, a founder of the CRS firm.



2012 "Lake|Flato: Landscape Centric Design & Prefabrication" (Icon 3.2 MB)

On April 13, 2012 the CRS Center at the Texas A&M College of Architecture presented the eleventh in a series of Rowlett Lectures of distinguished design and construction firms titled: Lake|Flato: Landscape Centric Design & Prefabrication.

Since founding Lake|Flato Architects with David Lake in 1984, the San Antonio – based firm has received nearly 100 national and state architectural awards. In 2004, the American Institute of Architects awarded Lake|Flato the prestigious Firm Award, the highest honor an American architecture firm can receive. Lake|Flato has had five projects awarded the Top Ten Green Project Award by The American Institute of Architects Committee on the Environment, the premier award for sustainable design. His recently completed nature center in East Texas, Shangri La Botanical Gardens, received a Platinum LEED certification, one of only 50 projects in the world to achieve this level of sustainability.


Gerald Hines


Tom Owens


Jerry Lea


Charlie Kuntz