Judy Frydland named Code Official of the Year
Each year, the International Code Council recognizes peers and colleagues who are a reflection of what the association stands for: dedication to developing model codes and standards used in the design, build and compliance process to construct safe, sustainable, affordable and resilient structures. The Code Council honored several outstanding individuals and organizations for their accomplishments and contributions to building safety and resiliency in their communities during the 2019 Annual Conference in Las Vegas, Nev.
The Gerald H. Jones Code Official of the Year Award is awarded to an individual whose contributions advance the code enforcement profession and the Code Council’s mission. The individual must demonstrate professional abilities that are an example for all members of the code enforcement profession and advance the cause of safety in the built environment. The award is presented in honor of the founders of the three model code organizations: Albert H. Baum, M.L. Clement and Phil Roberts. Judy Frydland, commissioner of the Chicago Department of Buildings, received the 2019 Gerald H. Jones Code Official of the Year Award during the Members Luncheon on Oct. 22, 2019, in Las Vegas, Nev.
Frydland has served Chicago faithfully for nearly three decades. She is one of the hardest-working heroes of her profession and exemplifies the meaning of code official of the year. She pushes the envelope in the building safety industry, with an unwavering commitment to modernize and enhance the safety and quality of life for the residents and communities throughout the city of Chicago.
“I can’t get past how surprised I am over the enthusiasm for this new Chicago building code,” Frydland said upon accepting the award. “When I started to think about it, I had no idea that it was going to becomes such a big event in my life.”
Frydland has worked with numerous city departments, community groups and stakeholders to enforce building codes and regulations. For 25 years she worked as the deputy corporation counsel for Building and Licensing Enforcement where she enforced the city’s vacant building ordinance and implemented strategies to preserve the city’s housing stock while also addressing troubled buildings and problem businesses. Since 2015, she has served as the commissioner of the Department of Buildings for the city of Chicago. She directs a 295-person department with the goal of improving the safety and quality of life for residents and visitors throughout the city.
Partnering with the International Code Council, she led the development of the first full rewrite of the Chicago Building Code in 70 years. She also oversaw the successful implementation of the first update of the Chicago Electrical Code in 20 years and helped to establish new reforms that streamlined and sped up the permit process.
“It was really a struggle to figure out how to do it right,” Frydland recalled. “Without the Code Council — without Sara Yerkes, Dominic Sims, Mike Pfeiffer and especially Grant Ullrich from my department — I couldn’t have done it. This was really a team effort and I’m just so honored and grateful. Thank you very much.”
Among her many distinctions, she is the recipient of the 2018 Building Industry Women of the Year in Construction Award from the Homebuilders Association of Greater Chicago and the 2019 Outstanding Community Partner Award from the Community Investment Corporation. She is constantly promoting and upholding building safety, building codes and quality inspections and exemplifies a life of service to her family, her community and her profession.
The International Code Council congratulates Judy Frydland as its 2019 Gerald H. Jones Code Official of the Year.
View past award recipients.