Development Team

  • Louis Lawen

    President & CEO, P.ENG

    Louie G. Lawen created Dexel Developments in 1999 as the development, design and construction arm of the Lawen Group of Companies. Louie is also one of the co‐founders of Paramount Management; the property management arm of the family business that owns and manages 1,000 residential units and 200,000 sq ft of commercial property primarily in Halifax, Nova Scotia. With 25 years of focusing on urban multi‐unit mixed use projects, Louie has had the opportunity to develop, design, construct and manage some of Halifax’s premier signature buildings.

    One of his most recent projects, Avonhurst Gardens, won the Investment Property Owners Association of NS (IPOANS) Multi‐unit Development of the Year (2015). Other project awards include: VIC Suites won Lieutenant Governor's Design Awards in Architecture Citation (2011) as well as the IPOANS Multiunit Development of the Year (2012). The Lofts at Greenvale won the Heritage Trust of NS Commercial Award (2010) and the IPOANS Multi‐unit Development of the Year (2011). In 2010, Dexel was awarded the Business of the Year Award by the Canadian Lebanese Chamber of Commerce. Furthermore Louie won the 2012 Ernst & Young Entrepreneur Of The Year (Real Estate). As a partner with his brothers John and Peter Lawen, Louie was awarded the Pillar of the Community 2013 Award from IPOANS.

    Currently, Louie is a board member of the Housing Trust of Nova Scotia. He is an active member of Saint Antonios Orthodox Church, where he has led the re‐development of the Church building at the corner of Windsor and Chebucto in Halifax. Additionally, Louie is a former board member of Sacred Heart School, Urban Development Institute (UDI) and IPOANS. As a former graduated of the Dalhousie University Engineering program, Louie gained his professional status in 2000. With the philosophy that good planning and design are pillars of a healthy society, Louie founded the George Lawen / Dexel Scholarship which is awarded to 2nd year Dalhousie Masters Planning Students actively involved with the local community.

  • Kris Skiba

    Vice President of Design & Construction, MBA, P.ENG

    Native Haligonian Kris Skiba has been a dedicated member of the Dexel team since 2006. After earning a degree in Civil Engineering from Dalhousie University, Kris completed his professional internship at Dexel under the mentorship and tutelage of Louis. He also holds an MBA from St. Mary’s University (of which he completed while working full time at Dexel). Kris’ passion for design and construction has driven him to advance immensely within the company; from Site Supervisor to Project Manager to his current role as Vice President of Design and Construction. He is involved with the Construction Association of Nova Scotia and is proud to be co-founder and board member for local non-profit, The Ramp Project.  Kris’ accomplishments both inside and outside of the company are many; he was the recipient of the Robert Shaw Scholarship, the Canadian ALS Society Award Volunteer Award and the Queen’s Golden Jubilee Award. When he isn’t strategizing with Louis at the office or mentoring his team on the jobsite, Kris enjoys golfing, boating and spending time with his wife, son and two dogs.

Construction Team

  • Nick LoPresti

    Architect, NSAA

    Nick LoPresti is an architect and a founding member of Dexel. A Halifax native, Nick completed his architectural degree in 1985. After several years of experience in a multi-disciplinary firm, he broadened his cultural and professional experience working on a wide range of residential and commercial projects within various studios and in partnerships based in Italy. While abroad, he was project and site architect for challenging works in Saudi Arabia and Lisbon. Academically, Nick obtained the recognition of his Canadian degree, completing a thesis on sustainable building, which received full marks from the Polytechnic University of Turin. When he’s not thinking about his next design, Nick is out exploring Nova Scotia’s coastal towns and beaches, travelling to Italy, or visiting his grandchildren out west.

  • Brent Robertson

    Architectural Technologist - Intern Architect

    Brent has been with Dexel since 2010 and assists in the architectural development of all projects. He’s also the BIM (building information modeling) administrator for Dexel. A Windsor, Ontario native, Brent earned a diploma in Architectural Technology from St. Clair College while setting his sights to further his architectural training by attending Dalhousie University. As a second generation Scottish immigrant whose father crossed through Pier 21, the move to “New Scotland” was practically fated. At Dalhousie University, he obtained a Bachelor of Environmental Design and a Masters in Architecture and later completed the Rick Hansen Foundation assessor training. Outside of the office, Brent is also a gardener and an amateur vintner/brewmaster.

  • Eli Chiasson

    Architectural Coordinator

    Attracted by their modern designs, Eli joined the Dexel team in 2015. He uses his design education, problem solving skills, and attention to detail to help turn designs into completed buildings. Eli grew up in Nova Scotia and has a Bachelor of Arts & Science from McMaster and a Bachelor of Environmental Design Studies from Dalhousie. His previous experience includes a work term at Ekistics Planning & Design and working as a Design Coordinator for a national general contractor. Outside of the office, Eli is an avid cyclist and a proud father.

  • Kaitlyn Dill

    Architectural Technologist

    Kaitlyn studied Architectural Engineering at Nova Scotia Community College (NSCC) before moving to Grande Prairie for three years to work as an Architectural Technologist. In 2018, she happily made the move back to Halifax to join the Dexel team. After growing up forty minutes from Halifax in Lantz, Nova Scotia, Kaitlyn is thrilled to be a part of a great company contributing to positive changes in the city that she loves. On the weekends, you can usually find Kaitlyn staying active outdoors, cooking, or catching up with friends, family, and her dog, Rocko.

  • Brendan Forbes

    Architectural Technologist

    Brendan is a graduate of New Brunswick Community College’s Building Engineering Technology: Building Systems program. After spending four years working in civil transportation design, Brendan decided to get back to his roots and pursue a career in building design. He joined the Dexel team in 2019 and now assists in the development of new building projects. Brendan hails from Quispamsis, New Brunswick and likes to spend his free time golfing in the summer, complaining about not golfing in the winter, and enjoys making music in his spare time.