Shari Bjork of MNCREW passed away at age 51 on July 17, 2021, after a courageous three-year battle with cancer. Throughout her battle, she carried a smile that not only kept her own spirits up, but ours as well. We will cherish her memory.
Shari was a super star in commercial real estate and made her mark both in our profession and the broader community. After accumulating experience at Shea Inc. and Ellerbe Becket, in early 2004 she started the design firm Studio Hive (now part of DLR Group) with Shawn Gaither and Janice Linster. Most recently, she was a Principal and Workplace Leader at DLR Group.
She continued her commitment to the industry and her community through her leadership in MNCREW, serving as a board member for several years and as chapter president in 2017. Shari was also a graduate of the inaugural CREW Network Leadership Certificate Program in 2016.
“I had the unique pleasure of being paired with Shari as her mentor in the inaugural CREW Network Leadership Certificate program. Shari and I had a lot in common to share with each other! Starting and running a firm, caring for one’s employees and clients, trying to do the right thing even when it caused a hardship for yourself – we’d both been through all of that. Shari was thinking about “what comes next” for her practice and had opportunities to join forces with several firms. I last saw her when I was in Minneapolis for the AIA Women’s Leadership Summit in September 2019. Shari was firmly established with DLR Group; she gave me a tour of her office and we went to lunch. I was so pleased to hear about her positive experiences since joining DLR. Despite her cancer diagnosis, her smile, sparkling eyes, and positive attitude radiated.” – Judy Nitsch
“I was always in awe of her ability to engage on so many levels. When she was MNCREW president, she was also working on selling her company and leading the sale of WRTC, which was a HUGE undertaking! Her strength and leadership have always been inspiring to me. I am so grateful for the opportunity to have served alongside her on the MNCREW board.” -Deb Barnes
“I loved her energy and her matter-of-fact way of getting things done. We had great adventures together as we traveled as delegates to the CREW Network summits and conventions. She knew where art museums were in every city – and good restaurants! It’s hard to imagine MNCREW without Shari – we are miles ahead of where we would be due to her efforts, dedication and just being a lovely soul.” -Mary Jo Kelly
“I will always remember how Shari jumped right in and gave the board all she could with a cheerful demeanor and a hard-working attitude. She was creative but practical, and that allowed her to succeed and solve problems for her clients as well as our chapter. We were lucky to have the energy of her passion behind our chapter and Shari at the helm.” -Andrea Fazendin
“Shari’s passion for women in the workplace and her support of the CREW mission were inspiring. I cherish her brilliant smile, her laughter, her great ability to listen and the contemplative look when she was considering a subject matter and discussing it. It was always fun attending CREW events in various cities with Shari and that walk along the Detroit River with her is one I won’t soon forget.” -Claire Roberts
“Shari was a force of nature! She pushed the high standards and exceeded them, was a true professional. She will be missed greatly, and I am so happy to have wonderful memories of her to hang onto.” -Ericka Miller
Please join MNCREW and other industry friends and colleagues in honoring and continuing Shari’s legacy by contributing to CREW Network Foundation's established scholarship endowment. Your generous gift will help us support future generations of female leaders and advance women in the industry.
In addition, Judy Nitsch will match every $100 memorial gift made to CREW Network Foundation in honor of Shari, up to a total of $10,000.
Please help pay it forward for other women in CRE, just like Shari would have wanted us to!
CREW Network Foundation is the only nonprofit dedicating its resources solely to advancing women in commercial real estate globally. No other organization is making such a significant impact on the commercial real estate industry.
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Scholarship Endowment - Shari Bjork Memorial Gift
CREW Network Foundation
1201 Wakarusa Dr Ste D
Lawrence, KS 66049 USA