Commercial Environments

George DePalma

George J. DePalma

George is the founder of the DePalma Group. Since 1977, George has led the firm in commercial office design, development, innovative facility planning, and strategic, effective management solutions for clients nationwide. Many of the firm’s original clients are with the team today. George manages the financial and business operations of the firm.

“I believe in providing our clients with services that are thoughtful, responsible, responsive, and imaginative – on time and within established budgets. It’s not about me, and it’s not about winning design awards…it’s about solving our clients’ space and operational problems”

Elsa DePalma

Elsa S. DePalma, FRDI, IIDA, ICSC
Vice President

Elsa founded the DePalma Group Retail Design Division in 1979. A specialist in retail planning and design, she directs the firm’s projects in the retail group. Elsa’s expertise takes the firm into all segments of retail and hospitality environments including hard and soft goods stores, showrooms, shopping centers, airport shops, and auto dealerships. She shares in the firm’s management and in the marketing of the company’s services. Elsa takes a hands-on approach, working with clients on branding, image development and retail positioning strategies.

“We continually keep a pulse on the consumer and the constantly changing retail world so that we provide our retail clients with environments that “sell”, and help our developer clients create environments that attract tenants.”

Neil Beaufait

Neil Beaufait, AIA, LEED AP

Neil has been a registered Architect since 1980. He is the Architect of Record for all of the DePalma Groups’s projects. Neil is a Chicago Certified Architect, and is a registered Energy Professional for the City of Chicago. Neil oversees the accuracy of the documentation process and is responsible for drawing quality control and permit acquisition.

“One can never pay too much attention to the details…or put too much effort into getting it right - the first time.”

Al Zimmerman

Allan Zimmerman
Project Principal

Al has over 30 years experience in master planning, interior design, project operation and management. He works with commercial client building owners and managers through all phases of projects - from inception and identification of objectives, through budgeting and appropriation of funds, design, documentation and implementation.

“Collecting complete and accurate data, establishing solid tracking systems and constant communication are the components that insure our projects run smoothly.”

Mike Jung

Michael Jung
Project Princpal, Tenant Development/Services Coordinator

Mike has been developing innovative tenant development and planning solutions for over 30 years. Mike is directly involved with building managers and leasing agents, and establishes strong client relationships by providing responsive, efficient communications and professional, personalized service. He manages the entire process of each project, assuring that the goals and objectives are realized on time and on budget.

“Good design starts with understanding the requirements and establishing a solid plan…everything else then falls into place.”

Karen Renzi

Karen Renzi
Project Design Director

Karen has over 30 years experience as an interior designer and project director. Her portfolio of work includes projects in commercial, retail and residential design. Karen directs the design efforts of the company, assuring that the design solutions are creative, problem solving, budget conscious and aesthetically appropriate. She also contributes to the marketing and promotion of the firm.

“The most enjoyable and the most necessary part of my job is facilitating the interaction between clients and all the professional team members that contribute to the success of the project.”

Mike Patete

Michael Patete
Project Principal

Mike has over 20 years experience working with building owners and managers and corporate clients. He oversees the project documentation and construction for tenant work and build-outs. Mike is responsible for the smooth operation of projects and is directly involved in design, budgeting, scheduling, project management, and construction.

“Most projects have similar components – understanding the
specific requirements of each job, and each client is always my
number one concern.”

Brenda Zaczek

Brenda Zaczek
Graphic Design Director

With 25 years of experience, Brenda directs graphic design for all of DGA’s projects. She designs signage and wayfinding systems and environmental graphics for corporate environments. For the retail division, Brenda supports client branding with her designs for signage, graphics and collateral material. She helps clients visualize options and final solutions through photo renderings. Brenda also manages DGA's marketing materials and the DePalma Group website.

“Successful graphics are the result of a subjective and objective driven design. The visual product is the result of that strategic process.”

Matt Babich

Matthew Babich
Information Services Manager, IT/CAD Manager

Matt is responsible for all technical support services at the DePalma Group and as such, maintains and manages data and CAD systems. Matt updates and monitors programs, systems and software, assuring the most technologically current services for clients and projects. Matt has over 20 years experience and expertise pertaining to all phases of architectural production.

“IT is a moving target…we have to stay ahead of what’s next, and yet be sure that what we do on a daily basis is easily accessible for us and our clients.”


Amy Ferguson
Project Manager, Interior Architect

Amy is a Project Manager with a degree in Architecture and over 16 years experience in the Tenant Development industry. She is responsible for the preparation of construction documents for permit and implementation and monitors each project through completion. Amy develops “test fit plans” for prospective tenants, reviews and coordinates shop drawings, attends job coordination meetings and tracks project progress.

“My priority is to fully understand and address the relationship between productivity and the use of available space.”

17W695 BUTTERFIELD ROAD SUITE “G” OAKBROOK TERRACE, IL 60181 T 312.733.1460 F 312.733.0448