FirstService Residential, the leading manager of residential communities in North America, announced the promotion of Kelly Dougherty to president of FirstService Energy. FirstService Energy is the company’s energy management and sustainability advisory subsidiary that is leading environmental change by improving energy efficiency and reducing water consumption, ultimately with the goal of reducing operating costs and harmful carbon emissions across FirstService Residential’s extensive property management portfolio.
Since launching in the New York market in 2009, FirstService Energy has been extending its services to FirstService Residential clients in markets across the U.S. and Canada. The continuation of this portfolio- wide expansion, led by Dougherty, will bring the benefits of the company’s sustainability advisory services to positively impact more than 1.7 million residential homes across 8,500 residential communities as well as the company’s own corporate locations.
Residential properties are a critical element in the transition to a lower-carbon future. Buildings are responsible for 40% of global energy consumption and about one-third of global greenhouse gas emissions. “In addition to fulfilling our social responsibility to safeguard the environment, the extensive scale and geographic distribution of our portfolio presents us with a compelling opportunity to have a significant impact on reducing energy costs, consumption and carbon emissions across North America,” explains David Diestel, CEO of FirstService Residential. “As local and federal laws aimed at reducing carbon emissions and improving efficiency become increasingly stringent, there’s a growing need for th board members and building owners we serve to have clear, transparent and actionable data in order to make important, often costly, decisions on the right efficiency projects to undertake for the betterment of their communities and the world around us.”
“Kelly has been an integral part of FirstService Energy’s continued growth and is a key partner to numerous governmental agencies that seek her expertise on sustainable practices for residential buildings,” said FirstService Energy Principal Tal Eyal. “Her tenacity, passion for the environment, and commitment to service excellence is apparent in every project she leads and every client she works with.”
As an industry thought leader, Dougherty serves as an advisor to organizations and regulatory bodies on emission reduction regulations, strategies, and goals. Her active involvement in the energy industry enables her to keep FirstService Residential’s property managers, clients and building staff informed on the latest technologies, regulatory requirements, and incentive programs, and helps to ensure buildings are operating in the most efficient manner. Dougherty joined the company in 2016 as director of energy management and was promoted to vice president in 2020.
Dougherty is a certified LEED Green Associate, and an expert on infrastructure resiliency development and energy reduction planning. Under her guidance, the energy team provides resources to help clients optimize available energy incentives. For example, the team obtained $16.8 million in incentives for New York clients in 2021 for projects ranging from carbon studies, installing electric vehicle (EV) charging stations and LED lighting retrofits, to steam trap replacements, elevator upgrades and water facility enhancements.
Dougherty is a member of the NYSERDA Electrification Advisory Board, a member of the New York State Public Service Commission’s Energy Efficiency and Building Electrification Performance Management and Improvement Strategic Advisory Board, and a member of the NYC Local Law 97 Communications Working Group. She also assisted AIA New York and the Center for Architecture in developing a education program for Registered Architects on best practices for complying with NYC Local Law 97. Dougherty was named a 2020 GlobeSt ‘Women of Influence’ for her work identifying and implementing energy conservation measures for FirstService Residential properties. She holds a master’s degree in sustainability management from Columbia University and a bachelor’s degree in labor and employee relations from Rutgers University.
“Over the last six years, I’ve gained valuable insights from assisting a wide range of buildings — from century-old walk-ups to brand new supertalls,” said Dougherty. “In our work with owners, boards, and property managers, we sometimes encounter challenges associated with energy reduction, but in nearly all cases, these challenges can be mitigated with sufficient forethought and planning. With legislative pressure to reduce emissions increasing, I’m excited to begin my new role as president and to continue helping properties across North America improve their efficiency and reduce carbon.”