The 34th Annual Chicago Commercial Real Estate Awards (CREA) Dinner held on May 19 brought together hundreds of Chicago’s top architects, brokers, developers, property managers, interior contractors and design professionals to both celebrate the outstanding achievements in all facets of the industry and to support the Greater Chicago Food Depository (GCFD). Thanks to the generosity of attendees and sponsors, the CREA raised $1.1M to fight hunger and its root causes in Chicago and Cook County.


Associated Bank has been a proud supporter of the event for over 12 years and this year continued to be the proud presenting sponsor.


As part of the event, Associated also sponsored the Gamechanger Award. This award was presented to Elzie Higginbottom, a developer, contractor, entrepreneur, philanthropist and civic activist. Higginbottom has been an active member of Chicago’s real estate community for over 50 years, he is the founder and chairman of East Lake, Chicago’s largest black-owned development and management firm, and the founder of Burling Builders, a full-service general contracting company.


Greg Warsek, senior regional manager, Commercial Real Estate (CRE), Associated Bank, additionally supports the event as a member of the CREA Event Steering Committee since 2008. He also serves on the Blue-Ribbon Panel of CRE professionals that select the finalists from the various submissions.


For more information on the event and photos from this year’s event can be found here.