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Karen Bischoff

Director of property and risk

Sunny Hills Services

300 Sunny Hills Drive, San Anselmo 94960

415-457-3200 x117

www.sunnyhillsservices.org

See profiles of the other 2017 North Bay Facilities Manager Awards-winners.


“Facility management will continue to evolve as managers are expected to create better and smarter work environments by utilizing new technology, sustainable products, energy management, etc.”

Professional background: My entire career has been working for non – profits. I started at Sunny Hills in 1997 as an Event Coordinator in the fundraising department. In 2008 I was asked to help project manage a large renovation of several of our school buildings which led to my being named Director of Property & Risk.

Education: B.A. in communication studies

Staff: One maintenance lead and one janitor.

Describe the facilities you oversee: Sunny Hills’s campus is 25 acres with four school buildings, a commercial kitchen, one residential cottage and an Administration building totaling 33,000 sf of space. We also have playing fields, a swimming pool and lot of open space.

Tell us a little bit about yourself: I live in San Rafael and am happily married.

What do you see as the role of the facilities managers within your organization?

To maintain a safe and comfortable environment for our clients, staff and visitors.

What is the achievement you are most proud of?

Our school operates year-round and many of our major projects involve tight time frames. If we can finish a project on time and on budget, before the kids return, I am always proud. I have dedicated staff who consistently work hard on a daily basis to maintain our facility. We all work as a team and strive to maintain the property in the best state possible. I am happiest when there are few surprises and we are able to accomplish the most utilizing our limited resources wisely.

What is your biggest challenge today?

Working with a limited budget and resources. Our campus was built in 1965 and needs constant upgrades to its utility systems, equipment, buildings, you name it.

What is the next major project either underway or on the horizon?

We recently completed a capital project assessment and have plans to tackle inspecting and/or replacing most of our underground site utilities in the next few years.

This summer we plan to replace two roofs on our school buildings thanks to two generous foundation grants we received this month. We also plan to expand our leased office space in Santa Rosa in the fall to accommodate our new substance use disorder programs for youth.

What product or service would/or is helping you do your job more effectively?

Recently services designed to help with energy management have been extremely helpful. For example, we took advantage of PG & E’s energy efficiency program for schools and were able to replace or retro fit energy wasting light fixtures in five buildings for free.

Most admired businessperson outside your organization: I have admired Nancy Lublin for several years and follow her career. She used a $5,000 inheritance to start Dress for Success at the age of 23 and then went on to transform DoSomething.org into one of the largest youth organizations in the world.

Current reading: “The Japanese Lover” by Isabel Allende

Most want to meet: Malala Yousafzai

Stress relievers: A day at the beach, dinner with friends, reading a great book.

Favorite hobbies: Travel, gardening.

Words that best describe you: My friends say that I am resourceful, honest, loyal, persistent, and supportive.

Karen Bischoff

Director of property and risk

Sunny Hills Services

300 Sunny Hills Drive, San Anselmo 94960

415-457-3200 x117

www.sunnyhillsservices.org

See profiles of the other 2017 North Bay Facilities Manager Awards-winners.