The Society of Marketing Professionals (SMPS) awarded Janki DePalma, LEED AP, CPSM, Kirksey's Senior Associate and Director of Business Development, with the Chapter President of the Year (CPY) Award at its 2023 National Amplify A|E|C Conference. The award was announced at a ceremony in Austin on Aug. 19, 2023.

This award recognizes an SMPS Chapter President who has demonstrated excellence in leadership while serving the chapter and its members. It is based on the following factors: leadership, chapter management, society awareness, membership, and chapter programs/events. The nomination process includes both self and peer nominations and must be submitted by a current SMPS member.

"Janki is a bright star in our Kirksey Austin office who is engrained in the Austin community and a leader for the future of our industry," said David Dalton, Kirksey Austin Vice President. "We're grateful to have her leadership and ability to make lasting connections as part of our team. We are very excited for her and all that she's accomplished."

Janki has been an SMPS member for over 20 years and has been a board member of SMPS Austin for five years. SMPS is the leading professional development organization for architecture, engineering, and construction business leaders. She is currently the Immediate Past President, leading the chapter's Mentor Protégée program and co-chairing Drinks with Developers, which began during her presidency.

"SMPS is more than a professional organization – they are my 'people' reminding me that I wasn't alone, what I did had value, and that we are all leaders," said Janki. "I am blessed to know so many talented people nationwide, all connected through this common thread. I've never seen a group that is filled with such vibrant, generous, and talented individuals. It's hard to put into words how much this award means to me; I'm humbled and grateful."

One of the things she is most proud of with SMPS is her involvement with its "I Belong" campaign, which was a continuation of the Board's commitment to diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging championed by the work of SMPS National. She also worked tirelessly to ensure 100% of program panels featured women or speakers of color and ended her term as President with a 95% member retention rate. In addition, she is proud of her work which added $70,000 in annual and event sponsorship revenue.
Janki joined Kirksey as Director of Business Development in 2021 and brought with her more than 20 years of experience in the industry. She is a connector at heart who loves bringing people together. She advocates for the client experience and uses her belief in connection, authenticity, and empathy to drive her work. Janki's involvement in the industry and community connects Kirksey's Austin office to the people and ideas that make the city and surrounding area unique. She has developed local and national contacts through her leadership roles in ULI, CREW, AIA, ACE Mentors, as well as SMPS. Janki is currently a board member of the Austin chapters of AIA and ACE Mentors.

She frequently contributes to thought-leadership panels and publications regarding client and business development. She is also one of 38 to recently graduate from the Leadership Austin Essential program, strengthening her understanding of the issues impacting the city of Austin.