President's Award for Excellence: Jean Abouhamad and Sea-Dar

Headshot of Jean Abouhamad

The Boston Preservation Alliance is pleased to present our 2023 Susan Park President’s Award for Excellence to Jean Abouhamad, President and Founder of Sea-Dar Construction. A structural engineer and real estate developer, Jean founded the company in 1991 after leaving a successful career with Simpson Gumpertz & Heger. His passion and knowledge have grown the firm throughout the Northeast. Jean has an eye for detail with a focus on restoring historic buildings.

Jean’s background in construction has enabled him to bring enormous insight to owners and architects as they wrestle with the many options and considerations that arise throughout a project’s permitting, design, budgeting and construction process. He earned engineering degrees from Columbia and Cornell Universities, and in 2001 he was named one of Boston Business Journal’s 40 Under 40. In 2003, Jean received the National Leadership Award in recognition for his work as Honorary Co-Chairman for the Business Advisory Council of Massachusetts. He has also been a board member for the Boston Preservation Alliance and was an active member of the Building & Grounds committee of the Nobles & Greenough school in Dedham during which time they engaged in two substantial campus projects. 

For the past thirty-two years, Sea-Dar has focused on building strong relationships while providing high quality finishes on all construction, conversion, renovation, and restoration projects. Their thoughtful interventions can be observed in projects such as the Savoy which contains twelve new condominiums within a historical facade. Similarly, Jean and the team at Sea-Dar completely renovated the interior of Boston’s Harvard Club Annex. The project carefully maintains the building’s historic integrity and received the Silver PRISM Award for Best Historical Renovation in 2017. Jean is proud of Sea-Dar’s work at these sites as well as their efforts on additional projects such as 161-163 Commonwealth Avenue and Zero Marlborough, both of which won Preservation Awards, and 25 Beacon Street. The firm has also been recognized by the Alliance with Preservation Awards in 2018 for their project at 10 Farnsworth in Fort Point, in 2015 for their renovation of MIT’s Sigma Chi Fraternity at 532 Beacon Street, and in 2007 for their renovation of the condominiums at 126-130 Beacon Street. They also partnered for the Alliance’s first CuraTour event in 2023 at the historic Ayer Mansion, an architectural and artistic treasure that Jean is committed to preserving through new ownership. 

Over the years, Jean has found himself drawn to the architecture, diversity, and unique retail and restaurants of Boston’s South End where he has lived, started his business, and has located his headquarters. Jean’s favorite places in Boston are where old and new come together, like the juxtaposition of Trinity Church and the 200 Clarendon, and the Apple Store in the historic Back Bay. Dedicated to his family, Jean is married to accomplished photographer Rania Matar, and together they have raised 4 children.  Jean is also a committed fitness athlete and completed an Ironman Triathlon in 2022, and has participated in the PMC every year since 2011 where he has raised over $140,000 for Dana Farber Cancer Research and the Jimmy Fund.

2023 Preservation Achievement Award Recipients 

Join us on October 16 as we celebrate the work of Jean Abouhamad.

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Previous President’s Award for Excellence Recipients:

2022 Susan Park President’s Award: David Hacin 

2021 President’s Award for Excellence: John Cruz and Cruz Companies

2020 President’s Award for Excellence: Jim Batchelor and Arrowstreet Inc.

2019 President’s Award for Excellence: Larry Curtis and WinnCompanies

2017 — Boston Red Sox

2016 — Shawmut Design/ Construction 

2015 — Jonathan Davis

2014 — Howard Elkus and David Manfredi


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