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CAI Opens New Chapter in Dubai

5/12/2017  -  Falls Church, VA

CAI Middle East becomes the 63rd CAI Chapter supporting homeowners, community managers, and businesses serving condominiums, homeowners associations, and cooperatives worldwide.

Community Associations Institute (CAI), the leading international authority in community association education, governance, and management, is proud to announce the formation of a new CAI Chapter headquartered in Dubai, UAE. Known officially as CAI Middle East, the Chapter is the region's first and only professional association representing homeowners associations.

Since 2007, the UAE's real estate market has been restructured to accommodate new laws concerning ownership of jointly owned properties in the Emirate of Dubai. Jointly owned properties resemble traditional condominiums and homeowners associations typically found in the United States, Canada, and United Kingdom. The Dubai Real Estate Regulatory Agency (RERA) estimates that the city of Dubai encompasses approximately 472,000 housing units, including high-rise "apartment" towers and villas, or "single-family homes."

According to the Foundation for Community Association Research (FCAR), Dubai is home to the Burj Khalifa, the world's tallest building (828 m or 2,716.5 ft.). The 900 residential units are on floors 19 through 108. One of the world's prime examples of a mixed-used building, the Burj Khalifa houses residential, commercial, hospitality, and retail units within it and is often used as a case study of how super tall structures operate in a cohesive manner and comply with both local and international best practices and safety standards.

In 2012, CAI signed an agreement with the government-sponsored Dubai Real Estate Institute (DREI) to customize the internationally respected community association manager education course, The Essentials of Community Association Management (M-100), as the basic educational program for community managers in the region. Since then, CAI instructors have taught more than 30 CAI professional management development courses, including the 200-level courses required to achieve CAI's prestigious Professional Community Association Manager (PCAM) designation. In December 2016, Dubai hosted CAI's first Case Study held outside of the U.S. Managers must pass this challenging two-day property review to achieve the PCAM designation, which is the highest professional recognition available worldwide to managers who specialize in community association management.

Dubai2.jpgCAI Middle East Chapter joins 62 CAI chapters in the United States, South Africa, and Canada, as well as housing leaders in several other countries, including Australia, Spain, and the United Kingdom. "Our partnership with CAI Middle East Chapter is reflective of the changes in today's housing models around the globe," says Crystal Wallace, CAE, CAI's vice president of membership and chapter relations. "As common-interest communities continue to grow, the CAI Middle East Chapter's expansion accommodates and ensures that CAI's worldwide network is being served by offering professional community managers and homeowners invaluable access to latest industry resources, training, and networking."

Included in this photo are the following representatives in order from left to right:

Gregory G. Smith, CMCA, AMS, PCAM
Senior Vice President, Associa Northern California-Stockton
Stockton, CA

Prashant Faria, CMCA, AMS, PCAM
Community and Association Manager, Meraas Community Management, LLC.
Dubai, UAE

Kelly G. Richardson, Esq.
Co-Founder and Managing Partner, Richardson Harman Ober PC
Pasadena, CA 

John Hammersmith, CMCA, AMS, PCAM
Chief Executive Officer, Hammersmith Management, Inc., AAMC
Greenwood Village, CO

Thomas M. Skiba
Chief Executive Officer, Community Associations Institute
Falls Church, VA

Kirk Watilo, LSM, PCAM
Executive Director, Owners Association Management
Khidmah Abu Dhabi, UAE

"Through CAI's industry education and resources, community managers and housing leaders in Dubai and the UAE have gained invaluable knowledge on living and working in today's owners' associations," said Jeevan J. D'Mello, CMCA, AMS, LSM, PCAM, CAI Middle East Chapter president. "Being a part of CAI will continue to help our homeowners and professional managers mitigate risks across unpredictable challenges as the region's housing model evolves, as well as promote industry best practices and foster collaboration among local professionals and other CAI chapters."

For more than 40 years, CAI has offered education and guidance for community association homeowners, volunteer board members, and businesses serving these communities. Through CAI Middle East Chapter, the local business community, community managers, and industry partners will benefit from CAI resources including the Institute's comprehensive education and credentialing programs run by DREI. CAI Middle East Chapter will offer members the opportunity to attend educational sessions, an annual conference, and a range of networking and social events. 

"CAI works diligently to envision the future of community association living, governance, and management worldwide," said Thomas M. Skiba CAE, CAI's chief executive officer. "The expansion of the CAI Middle East Chapter further shows the importance of understanding the key trends in today's community associations. Whether you live in a condo, homeowners association, or co-op, maintaining and improving property values and making communities preferred places to call home is a universal goal."

CAI Middle East Chapter will host its inaugural chapter formation event on May 17. In addition to D'Mello, CAI Middle East Chapter's inaugural committee members also include Samer Ganni and Kirk Watilo, LSM, PCAM.

For additional information about Community Associations Institute, visit

For additional information on the CAI Middle East Chapter, visit


About Community Associations Institute (CAI)
Since 1973, Community Associations Institute (CAI) has been the leading provider of resources and information for homeowners, volunteer board leaders, professional managers, and business professionals in more than 338,000 community associations, condominiums, and co-ops in the United States and millions of communities worldwide. With more than 34,000 members, CAI works in partnership with 63 affiliated chapters within the U.S, Canada, South Africa, and United Arab Emirates as well as with housing leaders in a number of countries including Australia, Spain, Saudi Arabia, and the United Kingdom.  

A global nonprofit 501(c)(6) organization, CAI is the foremost authority in community association management, governance, education, and advocacy. Our mission is to inspire professionalism, effective leadership, and responsible citizenship—ideals reflected in community associations that are preferred places to call home. Visit us at and follow us on Twitter and Facebook @CAISocial.

Phone: 703-970-9235