Texas Association of Builders (TAB) is proud to announce the 2019 Excellence under 45 Award winners. This award acknowledges and honors the exceptional young professionals (YP) that have committed their time, efforts and careers to the Texas building industry. Adam Aschmann, Megan Kiella, Chris Lyons and James Rodriguez are to be showcased as future leaders of the industry across the state of Texas. Each will be recognized during the Star Awards cocktail reception and presentations that will be held on August 8 during the Sunbelt Builders Show™ at the Gaylord Texan in Grapevine, Texas. Their unmatched enthusiasm and love for building proves that the future of the residential homebuilding industry is in good hands.
Adam Aschmann, Vice President and General Counsel, Tilson Home Corporation
Megan Kiella, Vice President, Kiella Homebuilders
Chris Lyons, President, HOME By Lyons
James Rodriguez, Executive Vice President, Fox Energy Specialists
The awards program was created and developed by the TAB Young Professionals Council. To be nominated for this award, each young professional must be employed by an active member of TAB and be between the ages 21 and 45. The awards program provides industry education and networking for professional growth in the residential building industry, and helps program participants become better, more knowledgeable, and more productive employees.
Aschmann grew up in the plumbing industry, working for his father’s plumbing company in upstate New York. This provided him the opportunity to work on new construction and development sites where he found fulfillment in putting together pieces that would ultimately have an impact on someone. Through his professional growth and serving on numerous Greater Houston Builders Association and TAB committees and councils, Aschmann became a founding member of the NAHB Young Professionals Committee and in 2017 served as NAHB’s Young Professionals Chairman. As part of his responsibilities, he helped develop a nationwide strategic plan to help encourage, retain and promote young professionals in the homebuilding industry. This included a national awards program, developing toolkits for student chapters and those interested in establishing YP committees at their local, and various grassroots outreach programs.
Kiella is a natural-born leader. She has worn and continues to wear many hats in her professional career. Kiella has been a small business manager, licensed Realtor, banker, past president of the Temple Area Builders Association and director or chairman of several committees for the past six years. She’s also a wife and mother, community volunteer and fundraiser extraordinaire. Kiella is passionate about supporting the next generation of builders as she’s created a TABA Young Professionals group with a mission to mentor local high school trade schools and fundraise to help grow their programs.
Lyons grew up in the homebuilding industry as his dad is a 30-year custom homebuilder. Watching his dad build homes and develop long-lasting relationships with the homeowners made him want to continue the Lyons tradition of building quality homes. He also manages a 57-agent real estate office, Lyons Realty, and launched a NEST Insurance Agency in 2007. Lyons gives back to the Texas Panhandle Builders Association as he continues to serve on numerous committees and executive boards. In addition, he finds time to serve on state association committees and councils as well as the Board of Directors for the Amarillo Association of REALTORS and West Texas A&M University Alumni.
Like the previous three award winners, Rodriguez grew up in the industry as his family owned a housing consulting business. After working on the political front lines in Washington D.C., Rodriguez developed an interest in public policy and politics. That experience and passion paid off during the economic downfall in 2008 when he had to secure new government contracts from Texas’ Gulf Coast region to the Panhandle. At the state level, Rodriguez is active on the YP Council, Board of Directors, Government Relations, Code and Standards, Sunbelt Builders Show™ and Membership Committees as well as the Texas Builders Foundation Board of Trustees. He has also served on the Greater Fort Worth BA’s YP Council since its establishment in 2014 and remains active on the GFWBA Board of Directors.