April 2019

Employee Spotlight: Kelsey Greco

2019-04-08T15:57:53-04:00April 8th, 2019|Employee Spotlights|

Kelsey Greco’s passion for design helped pave the way that led her to Shook. Raised in a family that worked in construction, she has always had an interest in it. Now, she is forging her own path as she explores new roles and responsibilities at the company.  

What inspired you to get into this career?

My parents both worked in construction, so I was always around it growing up. That, combined with a love for design, made it inevitable that I ended up on the same path.

Briefly describe your career path to date.

I completed my degrees in Construction Management and Architecture at the Ohio State University and worked as an intern. After graduation, I joined the Shook team as a Project Engineer, then entered the field as a Superintendent. I plan to continue moving in this direction in my career.

What are the most important qualities of a leader?

One of the most important qualities of a leader is to be respectable. This doesn’t happen overnight; you must work hard to earn it from the crew.

What does safety mean to you?

To me, safety is to never compromise a person’s well-being to finish a job. We work in a stressful environment, but it’s never worth it to take shortcuts and risk an accident.

Who inspires you?

My parents are my biggest inspiration. My father is a carpenter and has built homes he designed, while my mother works as an accountant for a construction company. They work on the residential side of construction and I have seen what they have been able to accomplish with rather difficult upbringings. They inspired me to go into the larger, commercial side of the industry to help create better buildings and structures for society.

What is the most important lesson you have learned in the last year?

This year taught me how important it is to pay attention to detail and to plan ahead. Understanding the project, scheduling in advance, and conferring with the experts helps keep work flowing and problems under control. The goal is to be proactive, not reactive.

What piece of technology helps you most with your job? And why?

Having an iPad and PlanGrid on the job site is helpful. I can review, mark up, and search drawings in the field without flipping through pages or trying to remember the location of every detail. Being able to use 3D models helps solve problems ahead of time.

February 2019

Employee Spotlight: Kyle Canon

2019-02-25T15:02:58-05:00February 25th, 2019|Employee Spotlights|

Kyle Canon understands the importance of teamwork and project collaboration. Having worked in multiple positions himself, he is a firm supporter of learning about the different types of work performed on site. This has helped him tackle problems and perform his best work.

Briefly describe your career path to date.

I’ve worked in multiple market channels since I started my career. In each channel, I’ve had different roles such as estimator, project engineer, and superintendent. Each position taught me a great deal about construction.

Construction can be a challenging business. Do you have a specific approach or philosophy you use to tackle challenges as they arise on site?

Challenges can be tackled when we work as a team and successfully implement project collaboration. There are always several disciplines on site. Instead of working individually, we unite, communicate, and do an outstanding job.

What is the most important thing you do each day when prepping for your work day?

I like to start each morning by making my to do list and determining the order of importance. This is a great way to keep me organized. It also helps me keep track of the products that have been approved, as well as their scheduled installation. Tracking this ensures that we stay on schedule with installations.

Who inspires you?

My dad has always been my greatest role model.

What is the most important lesson you have learned in the last year?

Never be afraid to ask questions. Construction is complex; it’s better to be certain how to do something rather than guessing. The more you know helps you and the team perform at a higher level.

What piece of technology helps you most with your job? And why?

At Summa [Health’s Akron City Hospital] West Tower, CAD and the modeling programs were tremendous in helping me do my job. While I was not the operator of these programs, they were key in my management of the envelope team coordination. These programs allowed each team member to confidently install the steel embeds, structural steel, curtain wall embeds, curtain walls and envelope framing/finish systems.

Employee Spotlight: Chris Shafer

2019-02-06T14:06:10-05:00February 6th, 2019|Employee Spotlights|

Hard work doesn’t go unnoticed at Shook.

In January, it was announced that Chris Shafer would assume the role of CFO. In his new position, he will also oversee risk management, human resources, and information technology.

“Chris embodies our core values,” shares Executive Vice President Chris Halapy. “It’s important to us to first look within to fill leadership roles so that we can maintain our culture as we continue to grow.”

Shafer is a Certified Public Accountant and has 20 years of experience. He joined the company in 2014 as a controller, then was promoted to director of finance. Since then, the company has experienced substantial growth thus creating many opportunities for its own employees to step up into new leadership roles.

“This is an exciting time for the company,” says President and CEO Bill Whistler. “Through this period of significant growth, Chris has shown an acute awareness of the financial intricacies of our business and the construction industry as a whole. Combine that with his innate leadership skills, and he was the perfect fit to step up into our CFO role.”

We are confident that he will contribute to the continued prosperity of the company and another successful 93 years.

Congratulations, Chris!

January 2019

Employee Spotlight: Rachel Mulholland

2019-01-16T14:38:23-05:00January 16th, 2019|Employee Spotlights|

Project Engineer Rachel Mulholland discovered her interest in engineering as a college student. Ever since, she has devoted herself to learning more about the industry. Ultimately, this has taught her how it can support local communities, as well as how she can be a leader.

What inspired you to get into this career?

I was inspired by my civil engineering classes I took when I was an undergraduate. Learning about the application and execution of principles made me want to get out there and do them in the field. I was able to put them into practice when I started working in construction. I also wanted to support my local community. It wasn’t long before I realized I could do so by working in the construction industry. I have been able to contribute to the success of multiple communities thanks to my career.

Briefly describe your career path to date.

I began as a co-op in college, which provided me with valuable experiences. After graduation, I was hired full-time and have been working for the past two years.

Construction can be a challenging business. Do you have a specific approach or philosophy you use to tackle challenges as they arise on site?

My approach has always been to tackle the most daunting problems first. Once those are out of the way, I can focus on simpler tasks, which are quicker to finish. I also believe that when an issue arises, it is critical to talk to my teammates to try to find a solution.

What are the most important qualities of a leader?

The best leaders are knowledgeable and understand the project they are working on. If they aren’t sure how to do something, they are willing to learn. A leader should also be approachable. They keep the team together and functioning. If people aren’t willing to talk to the person in charge, problems will arise. Finally, it is important that leaders clearly communicate. Confusion can be detrimental to the outcome of a project and can put us behind schedule.

What’s the coolest thing you’re working on right now?

The new West Bed Tower for Summa Health Systems Akron Campus in Akron, OH.

December 2018

Employee Spotlight: Bill Whistler

2018-12-10T14:27:44-05:00December 10th, 2018|Employee Spotlights|

President and CEO Bill Whistler has gained a tremendous amount of experience, as well as respect, in the industry. From working odd jobs to working his way up to his current position at Shook Construction, he truly has seen it all. These experiences have not only prepared him for whatever life throws his way, but also helped shape him into the leader he is today.

What inspired you to get into this career?

My dad first sparked my interest in the business when he enlisted my help in projects around the house. There were a lot of hands-on construction projects to do, so I quickly learned that way. Soon, that interest expanded into architecture as well. I went off to University of Cincinnati and became a co-op at a company called Shook Construction.

Briefly describe your career path to date.

It’s been a long and winding road. From working odd jobs, such as taking out the trash and picking up mail, to becoming a quantity surveyor then making my way up to CEO, you could say I’ve tried it all. You can never have too much experience though!

Construction can be a challenging business. Do you have a specific approach or philosophy you use to tackle challenges as they arise on site?

A tried and true method is to plan the work and work the plan. This approach has helped me to adapt and overcome when the unexpected hits the fan—and the unexpected is inevitable. Each day presents a new problem, so you need to be ready to face it, even if you’re unsure what ‘it’ is.

What are the most important qualities of a leader?

There are a handful of them. A leader needs to be trustworthy, approachable, and decisive. I’ve also learned how important it is to be a good listener. Listen to your team and what they have to say. Having a different perspective on things can be incredibly important when you need to solve a problem.

What does safety mean to you?

Everything…all you have to do is live through handing a new widow her late husband’s car keys to understand why everything means everything.

Who inspires you?

My wife…I got nothing on her 🙂

 

August 2018

Employee Spotlight: Randall Beck

2018-08-08T12:31:05-04:00August 8th, 2018|Employee Spotlights|

Randall Beck has had a prosperous career due to his openness to change–whether that is by preparing for the unexpected or adjusting his leadership style. After working on countless projects, he has found the best equation for being successful in this field of work: by using his extensive engineering knowledge and believing in himself.

What is the most important thing you do each day when prepping for your work day?

Expect the unexpected. I can never predict every single thing that happens on a jobsite. I have to allow the unexpected to happen and just go with it. The way I handle it is what matters.

What are the most important qualities of a leader?

A leader must understand that not everyone responds the same. What works best for one person may not work for another. Having a leadership style that is flexible and adaptable to the multiple personalities on your team will almost always guarantee you success.

Who inspires you?

I am inspired by anyone who goes above and beyond their expectations for themselves. This motivates me to push myself every day and do my absolute best. When I fail, I don’t give up. I remind myself of my own potential and try again. 

What’s the coolest thing you’re working on right now?

Water treatment plants are the best projects there are. We use all aspects of Civil and Mechanical engineering in every job we do. I always enjoy bringing all the knowledge I’ve gained in this industry to one project and watching it come together to create a final product.

What is a specific skill-set or attribute you possess that you believe adds value to your projects?

My engineering skill set is something I bring to the table when I’m working on a project. It gives me an advantage because it allows me to understand why things are designed a certain way. Once I figure it out, I can think of ways to build more efficiently.

 What is the most important lesson you have learned in the last year?

I’ve found that having goals and dreams are key to finding happiness. If you’re unhappy, you’re not going to be motivated to be your best self. Not only do you suffer, but so does your potential for creating great things. So, for your own sake, find something you’re passionate about and enjoy doing!

June 2018

Employee Spotlight: Jim Trueblood

2018-06-20T09:20:17-04:00June 20th, 2018|Employee Spotlights|

Jim Trueblood’s interest in building has led to him having a well-rounded career in the construction industry. He has worn many hats, from carpenter to general foremen to his current role as project superintendent in our Mission Critical market segment. Every day, he is approaching problems from different angles, looking for the best solutions.

Construction can be a challenging business. Do you have a specific approach or philosophy you use to tackle challenges as they arise on site?

Every problem has a solution. There is no need to make an issue bigger than it needs to be.

What are the most important qualities of a leader?

A leader should possess these three qualities: the abilities to listen, analyze, and measure his or her reactions. In my experience, I’ve discovered this combination works wonders and results in the best outcomes.

What does safety mean to you?

Taking care of my coworkers.

Who inspires you?

My kids inspire me every day.

What is a specific skill-set or attribute you possess that you believe adds value to your projects?

People know they can approach me with a problem and I won’t overreact in a negative manner. It is essential to work well with others, especially on a project site. So much more is accomplished as a team instead of as a group of divided individuals.

What is the most important lesson you have learned in the past year?

If people feel like they have investment in a decision, they will have more interest in the outcome.

May 2018

Employee Spotlight: J.D. Craft

2018-05-02T15:03:10-04:00May 2nd, 2018|Employee Spotlights|

J.D. Craft is no stranger to working outdoors. His childhood was spent growing up on a farm, which led to him later wanting a career where he could be outside as much as possible. He began his career as a carpenter and now serves as a project superintendent for Shook.

Construction can be a challenging business. Do you have a specific approach or philosophy you use to tackle challenges as they arise on site?

I keep in mind that I’m unable to control everything. Construction has taught me to prepare for the worst-case scenario—you never know what to expect.

What are the most important qualities of a leader?

Having the ability to adapt to your environment, as well as maintaining a level head when things go wrong.

What does safety mean to you?

Sending everyone home in one piece! The last thing I want is to have to take somebody to the hospital, or worse.

What is a specific skillset or attribute you possess that you believe adds value to your projects?

I can picture shapes before we build them, so I have a pretty good idea of what will or will not look good.

What is the most important lesson you have learned in the last year?

Those who can, do.

March 2018

Construction Engineering Scholarship Recipient Joins Shook’s Ranks

2018-03-07T08:56:41-05:00March 7th, 2018|Employee Spotlights|

We are excited to announce that David Ramsey, the 2017 recipient of Shook’s annual Construction Engineering Scholarship at the University of Dayton (UD), is joining our team as a project engineer in our water resource business segment in the Midwest. Soon to graduate from UD with a degree in civil engineering, David already has an impressive amount of experience in his chosen field.

During his time at UD, he was a member of the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) and was elected to Social Chair two years running. His co-op with Adams Robinson Enterprises and summer volunteer work for UD’s Engineers in Technical Humanitarian Opportunities of Service learning (ETHOS) program gave him valuable experience in engineering and water treatment construction.

He enjoyed his past experiences in his co-op and service learning program and sees Shook as the next step in his career. His interview convinced him, as he felt the connection with our people and the culture of our Shook family.

His goal is to improve communities’ quality of life by using his skills in his career. He fits right in at Shook, where our mission is to dramatically improve the communities we serve.

February 2018

Christina Friend Named Director of Human Resources

2018-02-13T08:24:30-05:00February 12th, 2018|Employee Spotlights|

 

Because of her credentials and her continued contributions to the company, Christina Friend is Shook’s new director of human resources and project administration. She is an outstanding representative of the company’s culture and values, and we are excited to have her take on this leadership role within the company.

With a Masters of Business Administration with a concentration in HR, Christina originally was hired by Shook in 2006 to serve as an office manager in our Indianapolis office. She was responsible for the establishment of our project administration group, which under her guidance has realigned many of our internal work-flows, increased our efficiency, and enabled our project teams to increase their focus on project delivery and customer service.

From the onset of her time here, Christina demonstrated an outstanding balance of task management and critical thinking skills. She is a fun, likable teammate who interjects her personality and energy into her daily work.