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Joseph Balaz

President, Bohemian Benevolent & Literary Association, New York, NY

AFoCR Director Joseph Balaz was born on December 22, 1960 in Prague.  He became an AFoCR Director in 2009.  He first studied at the Institute of Technology in Prague and then entered Civil Engineering department at ČVUT (Czech Technical University).

In 1982, he escaped from an organized skiing trip in Austria and emigrated to West Germany where he lived for a year and a half before traveling to Canada.  From Montreal, he moved to New York, where he lives today with his wife Stephanie.  After arriving in NYC, he found employment with a construction and development company.  With a partner, he later set up his first construction firm, which concentrated on renovation work.  Next, he established J. Balaz Associates Ltd. (JBA), a New York City based construction project-management firm.  It specializes in unique high-end residential and specialty construction projects.

Of interest, the company performed major multi-phase renovation of New York's most famous recording studios, the Hit Factory, which in the past hosted such stars as Frank Sinatra, John Lennon, Stevie Wonder and later Madonna, U2, The Rolling Stones, Paul Simon, J-Lo, Michael Jackson, New York Philharmonic etc.  JBA was responsible for the building and renovation of studios, pre-production areas, and control rooms.  Construction of these facilities used the most advanced and complex proprietary technology.

JBA engages in residential projects for a select clientele holding distinguished positions in the field of finance, philanthropy, and art.  Due to contractual arrangements, the identities of some of these clients cannot be revealed in connection with their residential projects.

JBA does not advertise in any form and intentionally maintains a low profile in the industry.  For new projects the firm relies solely on exclusive private introductions.  JBA works with a roster of well-established subcontractors and architectural firms capable of handling the most demanding projects.

Mr. Balaz is also a partner in a development of a coastal property called Red Head on Cape Breton, NS.  He also owns Quantarex, Ltd., which sources technologies and provides consulting for construction projects, for example, the first “green” office building in Prague.

In December 2005 Joseph Balaz was elected delegate to the Bohemian Benevolent and Literary Association (BBLA) on behalf of the American Fund for Czech and Slovak Leadership Studies.  He was then elected head of the committee responsible for administration of Bohemian National Hall.  In October 2006, he became President of the BBLA and participated in negotiations with the Czech government on the final phase of repairs to Bohemian National Hall.  Under his leadership the BBLA and the Bohemian National Hall have become a major cultural institution representing the Czech heritage. Joseph enjoys art, travel and holds a private pilot license.