Spotlight Projects

  • Green, Orange and Blue!

    Jul 13, 2021

    F&S Joins the Green Sports Alliance

    What is the Green Sports Alliance?

    Founded in 2010, the Green Sports Alliance (GSA) is the leading environmentally focused organization in the sporting world that promotes and supports healthy and sustainable communities where we live, work and play. The GSA is a vehicle in the sports greening movement as it continues to expand. Their efforts include but are not limited to encouraging sport communities to improve operational performance measurement, track sustainability efforts, and increase diversity and leadership in promoting greater access to sports for all.

    The GSA drives change through three pillars: leveraging the power of sport to drive meaningful impact, inspiring professional sports leagues to join their cause, and using the Green Sports Alliance Foundation to advance social and environmental responsibility.

    The GSA has premium partners, including several Big Ten Conference members: Indiana University Hoosiers, Penn State Nittany Lions, Ohio State University Buckeyes, University of Iowa Hawkeyes, University of Michigan Wolverines, and University of Minnesota Golden Gophers. The University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign has now joined our peers as the latest Big Ten school to participate in the alliance!

    What will this look like moving forward?

    Betsy Liggett, coordinator for Special Programs in Environmental Compliance, shared with what this partnership means for F&S and why it’s important: “Facilities & Services is excited to join Green Sports Alliance this year. We are eager to partner with the environmentally focused organization, and its national team members, to continue encouraging our campus community to be resilient environmental stewards through sustainable energy, food, procurement, transportation, venue, waste, and water programs. Joining the Green Sports Alliance at F&S also supports the Illinois Climate Action Plan 2020 and strengthens campus sustainability efforts.”

    The University of Illinois has successfully implemented numerous sustainable practices, construction projects, and operational initiatives as a part of the Illinois Climate Action Plan (iCAP), and this is another step toward meeting iCAP goals. We are hopeful that this initial membership in the GSA through F&S will lead to a long-term relationship with the green sports movement and our campus community.

    SAVE THE DATE: GSA will be presenting at the virtual October 20, 2021 Illinois Green Infrastructure & Erosion Control Conference. This conference is hosted by the Champaign County Stormwater Partnership which the University of Illinois, Facilities & Services is a member. Check for registration details at CHAMPAIGN COUNTY STORMWATER PARTNERSHIP - Home (




  • The Art of the Project Manager

    Jul 09, 2021

    The Art of the Project Manager
    By Jenna Fesemyer

    It’s all about the process for Clarence Odom, associate director of Capital Programs, project management. For almost five years at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, Odom has been doing what he loves: taking projects “cradle to grave,” as it’s called in the industry.edit_DSC1415

    For Odom, a Mississippi native, it all started after he left the Marine Corps. After studying architecture for his bachelor’s degree, Odom went back to school to get a master’s degree in construction management, as he was fascinated with the process of where the hammer meets the nail. Odom worked for the City of New Orleans for 20 years as a project manager, working on re-building and boarding up the destroyed schools and city buildings from the wrath of hurricane Katrina. From New Orleans, he then found his way to the rural life of central Illinois in F&S Capital Programs.

    Odom now oversees two senior project managers and 10 other project managers as they work to design with architects, manage construction, and monitor the designing process of university buildings and facilities. All of which is worth it to him when he sees the joy and excitement in people’s eyes when they see the final project. His main priority continues to stay aligned with the F&S strategic plan: Delivering projects on schedule and on budget to a happy customer.

    As a response to the COVID-19 pandemic, Capital Programs experienced a lot of paused or delayed projects, especially as it was increasingly difficult to receive materials from overseas. The adjustments of the price of steel and wood due to inflation continues to make designing and construction an every day challenge.

    What’s Odom’s secret to balancing the lingering projects from COVID and launching new construction? “Be passionate about it – you have to really love what you’re doing when you’re in the construction industry. We make sure that Illinois students get the best experience possible by being good stewards, process-driven, consistent, and asking ourselves how we can do it better.”


  • Professionally Impressed

    Jun 22, 2021

    By Ted Metz
    I am Ted Metz, a sculptor from Alabama, and I was on campus June 2 to install a sculpture at the newly renovated Medical Sciences Building. For the past two years I have been in contact with project managers who have arranged for placement of my sculpture, called "STRUCTURAL MECHANICS," and the design and construction of the pedestal. As the final installation date was set, the ironworkers shop, the electricians shop and others were brought in to secure the site and actually install the sculpture with my guidance.

    I am writing because I was so impressed with the quality of professionalism I experienced. Todd Hawkins, Erik "Cable" Davis, Brett Balsamello, Will Corum and Mark Stine all worked together in harmony, exhibiting respect for me, the task at hand, and each other. I suspect that this sculpture installation was just another "work order" of many they probably do each day. From my brief experience with them I observed  their pride in the work itself. I believe they are a well-oiled machine of intelligent craftsmen. 

    The Art Itself

    The cast bronze portion is immediately recognizable as being a realistic figurative hand. Also immediately recognizable is the stainless steel portion which highlights the skeletal structure of the bones within the hand. The bones are accurately represented but they are formed with the negative space within the stainless plate. I think this sculpture is simultaneously realistic figurative and figurative abstract. It attempts to show the hand as we are familiar and also an X-ray view of the interior.  Bones form the structure within us and they are also the mechanical apparatus which allows us to move. "STRUCTURAL MECHANICS then seems a fitting sculpture for this building site."

    On Campus Again


    I recently retired from 42 years of teaching sculpture at the University of Montevallo in Alabama. While on the faculty I became aware of the different strata of employees within the university community such as the administration, staff, faculty, maintenance, and many others. In order to achieve a sound education for the students it took all of us doing our best to make a quality education happen. It is indeed a team effort and everyone involved needs to be reminded of that from time to time.

    I have always sought friendships with like-minded people and I have found these folks primarily in the physical plant shops where skilled craftsmen and women apply their knowledge and solve simple and complex problems on a daily basis. These trades, these shops, these men and women keep the campus afloat and moving forward. I have a tremendous respect for all the traditional trades.