Press Releases


2018 Gary E. Bird Horizon Award Presented to Michael Feigin and Jeffrey Hutchens of AvalonBay Communities, Inc.

Release Date: Nov 5, 2018

Houston, TX —The Gary E. Bird Horizon Award was presented today at the 38th IRMI Construction Risk Conference (CRC) to Michael Feigin and Jeffrey Hutchens of AvalonBay Communities, Inc.

Mr. Feigin and Mr. Hutchens were honored for their innovative loss prevention program designed to eliminate construction site fires on wood frame multifamily projects. Their approach focuses on four key pillars that use a combination of innovative building processes, new technologies, and a novel wood treatment to eliminate structural fires. Although designed with wood frame structures in mind, their approach has applications for fire loss prevention and elimination beyond the wood frame construction industry.

The Gary E. Bird Horizon Award, sponsored by Travelers, is presented annually by the International Risk Management Institute, Inc. (IRMI), to recognize a demonstrated commitment to improving construction risk management through the implementation of innovative, cost-effective, and efficient risk management techniques.

“Bringing all four risk mitigation pieces together is an innovative and all-inclusive approach that goes above and beyond the immediate addressing of the issue,” said Travelers Vice President of Construction Jennifer Lee.

“This is a game changer,” said Total Facility Solutions Regional Environmental, Health, and Safety Manager T.J. Lyons. “The basics of conventional safety have been gathered in a practical approach that now seems like an obvious fix—a fix that will save the lives of sons and daughters this firm will never meet.”

The other finalists for the award were Scott Root of Kitchell for his submission, “Reimagining the Building Process,” and Neff Ortiz of Nations Roof, LLC for his submission, “Protecting Employees from Elevation Falls.”

Learn more about the Gary E. Bird Horizon Award and the winning submission. 

CRC is the only national symposium devoted exclusively to insuring, bonding, and managing the risks of construction projects.The 39th IRMI Construction Risk Conference (CRC) will be held November 10–13, 2019, in Seattle, WA. 

About IRMI: 
For more than 40 years, International Risk Management Institute, Inc. (IRMI), has been the premier authority and educator for risk management, insurance, and legal professionals. IRMI simplifies the management of risk by publishing resources for technical content and providing continuing education, certifications, and conferences.


Heidi Vincent
(800) 827–4242