WINCO President Bill Krenn Retires

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WINCO Window Company announces the retirement of Bill Krenn, president of WINCO.  Krenn has been with WINCO since 1996 and has served in various capacities, including director of human resources, treasurer, vice president, and chief financial officer before being appointed as the company’s president in 2017.

As WINCO’s president, Krenn ensured that the overall direction of the company’s sales outreach and operations remained in concert with the vision of the family ownership. WINCO is a family owned and operated manufacturer for more than 100 years, when it was established by Johann “Otto” Kubatzky.

“I enjoyed my tenure at WINCO,” says Krenn. “WINCO’s family ownership structure offered great opportunities for my career – I was able to do exciting things that improved the lives of employees and their families, introduce new products, and provide support for our growing engineering department.”

Under Krenn’s leadership, the company faced one of its biggest challenges in 2020.

”I am especially proud that we were able to keep people employed during Covid,” says Krenn.  “WINCO was open the entire time for business.”

In recent years, WINCO has seen growth in product development for specialty niche markets, such as tornado, hurricane, blast protection, solar products, and technology-based automated window products. WINCO expects to continue this trend under new leadership.  Gantt Miller III, AIA and owner of WINCO is assuming Krenn’s responsibilities until a replacement is named. 

Founded in 1915, WINCO Window Company, based in St. Louis, provides full-service manufacturing of high-performance architectural and heavy commercial aluminum windows and doors nationally, for classic renovation and new construction. Visit www.wincowindow.com for more information. For more information, contact WINCO Window Company at (314) 725.8088 or visit www.wincowindow.com

National Design-Builder Clayco Constructing First Pernod Ricard Green Field Distillery in United States 

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The Pernod Ricard distillery and warehouse will expand across 265 acres in Marion County, Kentucky with an emphasis on using low carbon technologies. 

Clayco, a full-service, turnkey real estate, architecture, engineering, design-build and construction firm announced today it is building the first Pernod Ricard green field distillery in the United States. The project, designed by the Lamar Johnson Collaborative, is part of Pernod Ricard’s fast-growing Jefferson’s Bourbon brand. Clayco Design & Engineering is the process engineer and structural engineer of the project. The facility will produce over 7.5 million proof gallons of bourbon annually.  

Anticipated to break ground in early 2023 and completed in the third quarter of 2024, the 150,000-square-foot, state-of-the-art, carbon neutral distillery and aging warehouses located in Marion County, Kentucky, will be approximately 265 acres and include a world class visitor center to welcome bourbon enthusiasts on the historic Kentucky Bourbon Trail.

“This inaugural project marks a major accomplishment for both Pernod Ricard and Clayco,” Nathan Cook, Project Executive at Clayco, said. “We are extremely proud of this partnership with Pernod Ricard. It’s truly an honor for Clayco to help such a prestigious organization bring this new state-of-the-art distillery to life in such a historic part of bourbon country.”

“This investment is the latest illustration of our belief in the strength and potential of American Whiskey” said Jessica Chen, VP Operations, American whiskies at Pernod Ricard. “We’re delighted to partner with Clayco on this project and are committed to making our new Jefferson’s facility one of the most exemplary and sustainable distilleries in the world to achieve our ambitions for the brand. We can’t wait to welcome bourbon enthusiasts from all over to experience our new site.”

The Pernod Ricard green field distillery will be the first of its size in the United States to achieve LEED certification, an internationally recognized sustainability framework for efficient, carbon and cost-saving environmentally friendly buildings. The distillery and warehouses will include such low-carbon technologies as electrode boilers powered by certified renewable electricity, allowing the distillery to abstain from using fossil fuels during bourbon production. Clayco is leading the design-oriented visitor center using an integrated design-build approach with its in-house engineering capabilities and architecture that strives for a low carbon footprint.  

In addition, as part of Pernod Ricard’s commitment to protect and nurture its relationship with the community, Jefferson’s will continue to partner with local farmers and suppliers to source ingredients and casks whenever possible. 

Clayco is a full-service, turnkey real estate development, master planning, architecture, engineering, and construction firm that safely and sustainably delivers the highest quality solutions to clients across North America on time, on budget, and above and beyond expectations. With $4.9 billion in revenue for 2021 Clayco specializes in the “art and science of building,” providing fast track, efficient solutions for industrial, commercial, institutional, and residential-related building projects. For more information, visit www.claycorp.com

LJC is a full-service design and architecture firm committed to enhancing the quality of the human experience and to improving how design and architecture can impact each individual’s emotional being. By harnessing the power of integrated design, including architecture, workplace strategy, interior design, landscape architecture, urban planning and engineering, the company achieves its clients’ goals and aspirations. For more information, please visit www.theljc.com.

Mercy and ACE Performance Lab Collaborate to Offer On-Site Sports Medicine Services at Chesterfield Sports Complex

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To create a comprehensive sports center that helps athletes grow and compete to their full potential, Chesterfield Sports Association, Mercy and ACE Performance Lab have announced a collaboration to offer on-site services at Chesterfield Sports Complex (CSC) when it opens this March. 

As the facility’s medical provider, Mercy Sports Medicine will have athletic trainers on site for all practices, games and tournaments to evaluate and advise athletes following an injury and refer them for follow-up services. A 4,200-square-foot ACE Performance Lab will provide performance training and muscle recovery programs to athletes who train at the facility. A shared athletic training room will be used by Mercy and ACE Performance Lab staff to evaluate and treat athletes.

“We have one mission, and that is to take care of the youth of St. Louis,” said Stuart Duncan, president of Chesterfield Sports Association. “We are extremely proud to offer the best in sports medicine and specialized performance training to the athletes who will call.”

“From youth athletes to professionals and everyone in between, our athletic trainers and medical team is ready to provide care when and where it’s needed,” said Jason Muchow, Mercy Clinic Orthopedics and Sports Medicine executive director. “We look forward to working with the ACE Performance Labs team to keep these young athletes performing at their highest levels.”

Developed by Volleyball Olympic Gold Medalist Scott Touzinsky, ACE Performance Lab will offer private and group training sessions to help athletes maximize their performance. The state-of-the-art facility on the first and second floor of the complex will feature Olympic lifting stations and a 65-foot long and 15-foot wide turf area for speed and agility training using sleds and battle ropes. A recovery area features tools to help athletes speed muscle recovery to prevent injury or during rehabilitation following an injury. Equipment will include Hyper Ice Recovery Sleeves, theraguns, vibrating rollers and spheres. This is the third ACE facility to open in St. Louis in the last three years. ACE also operates ACE Volleyball Lab in Affton and ACE Performance Lab in Fenton.  

“ACE Performance Lab is extremely excited to work with Mercy and the Chesterfield Sports Association to give young athletes the help they need to stay healthy on the court playing the game they love,” said ACE Performance Lab Founder Scott Touzinsky. 

As St. Louis’ first world-class, indoor volleyball and basketball complex, the multi-court, 97,000-square-foot sports complex will attract an estimated 900,000 visitors each year to its clinics, camps, leagues and tournaments. More than 1,000 youth athletes will practice and train during the week and over 2,500 athletes will play in league and tournament games each weekend. Tenants include Bradley Beal Elite (BBE), the top ranked NIKE-sponsored basketball club in the Midwest; CNR Basketball, and High Performance STL, greater St. Louis’ premier youth volleyball club and Stratman Sports for volleyball.

A major economic driver, Chesterfield Sports Complex is projected to generate $3.6 million in local annual spending, including over 10,000 hotel room nights per year. 

CSA expects to host over 40 tournaments each year that will attract out-of-town guests to the area to generate economic activity for local restaurants, hotels and retail establishments. A total of 18 major regional sports events are already scheduled between March and July, including a top regional gymnastics meet and national martial arts tournament. 

Chesterfield Sports Complex will be owned and operated by nonprofit Chesterfield Sports Association. The organization is seeking naming rights and other sponsors to help support the remaining development and initial operation of the facility. For information about partnership opportunities, booking birthday parties, or hosting a sports competition at the facility, visit www.chesterfieldsports.com or email info@chesterfieldsports.com

Mercy, one of the 25 largest U.S. health systems and named the top large system in the U.S. for excellent patient experience by NRC Health, serves millions annually with nationally recognized quality care and one of the nation’s largest Accountable Care Organizations. Mercy is a highly integrated, multi-state health care system including more than 40 acute care, managed and specialty (heart, children’s, orthopedic and rehab) hospitals, convenient and urgent care locations, imaging centers and pharmacies. Mercy has 900 physician practices and outpatient facilities, 4,000 Mercy Clinic physicians and advanced practitioners, and more than 40,000 co-workers serving patients and families across Arkansas, Kansas, Missouri and Oklahoma. Mercy also has clinics, outpatient services and outreach ministries in Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi and Texas.

At St. Louis-area locations in Fenton and soon Chesterfield, ACE Performance Lab provides a fun and positive environment for athletes to learn from the best and become 1 to 2% better each time they walk into the Lab. Founded by Volleyball Olympic Gold Medalist Scott Touzinsky, ACE offers performance training services athletes need to help athletes dream big and reach their max potential as a volleyball player. Recovery areas at locations feature tools to help athletes speed muscle recovery to prevent injury or during rehabilitation following an injury. For more information, visit

Founded in 2020, Chesterfield Sports Association (CSA) is a Chesterfield, MO-based 501(c)(3) non-profit organization that was formed to give St. Louis youth the opportunity to grow, develop, and reach their highest potential as an athlete, student and individual. The organization will own and operate Chesterfield Sports Complex, which will provide local athletes a much needed home for volleyball and basketball training and competitions in St. Louis. A major economic driver projected to generate $3.6 million in annual local spending, CSC will host over 40 tournaments and major regional sports events each year. For more information, visit https://chesterfieldsports.com and follow chesterfieldsports on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn and Twitter.

Kwame Foundation Donates New Golf Center to Lincoln University

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Historic partnership between the foundation and the HBCU to benefit men’s and women’s golf programs

The Kwame Foundation and Lincoln University have come together for a historic partnership to improve men’s and women’s golf programs and increase access to the sport. Kwame Foundation’s multi-year commitment to Lincoln University Athletics was launched with extensive renovations to the university’s golf facility and provides much-needed equipment for student athletes. The Kwame Foundation Golf Center, which was unveiled to students last week, includes the installation of two fully interactive golf simulators, improved flooring and lockers. Founded in 1866, Lincoln University in Jefferson City, Missouri is one of the oldest historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs) in the United States and is the only HBCU in the state with both men’s and women’s golf programs. 

“We could not be more excited to commemorate the Kwame Foundation’s historic commitment to the only HBCU men’s and women’s golf programs in the state of Missouri,” said Dr. Kevin Wilson, Vice President for Advancement, Athletics and Campus Recreation. “Similar to emerging groups of philanthropists across the country, the KWAME Foundation is passionate about providing our students with access to the game of golf and equipping them with the tools to compete with anyone.” 

On January 18, athletes, faculty and alumni attended the unveiling ceremony of the modernized facility. The Foundation’s donations to the HBCU will allow the program to continue to progress and increase its competitiveness. With the renovation, athletes are no longer hindered from practicing during rainy and cold weather but are able to practice indoors year-round. A new van, purchased from Rusty Drewing Automotive, provides safe transport of student athletes as well as adequate storage for equipment to competitions. 

The game of golf has been central to Kwame Foundation since its founding. Each year, the organization hosts its ‘Tee Off Fore Education’ golf tournament to raise money for scholarships for minorities and first-generation college students. Since 2003, Kwame Foundation has contributed nearly $3 million for endowed scholarships to colleges and universities throughout the United States. $75,000 was raised for scholarships in 2022 alone.   

“With our primary educational focus now directed towards scholarships at HBCUs, we have strengthened our partnership with each of the two historically Black universities based here in Missouri,” said Kwame Foundation Executive Director, Lydia Huston. “Our support of Lincoln University’s golf program is a worthwhile investment that will allow the women and men who participate various pathways for athletic and academic success. We are excited to see this program thrive and grow.”

“On behalf of the Lincoln University Golf programs, I extend my deepest appreciation to the KWAME Foundation for their partnership. I am grateful for their desire to see progress and a culture of competitiveness in HBCU golf,” said Kortland Ware, Director of Golf. “Support from the KWAME Foundation will expedite our development into a program that will make our alumni, the Jefferson City community, and the Show Me state proud.”

Founded in 2003, Kwame Foundation is the charitable arm of Kwame Building Group. Kwame Foundation is a nonprofit organization created to address a prevailing need among African American students who have the aptitude and motivation for college, but who lack the financial and other resources necessary to succeed and graduate. Programs include contributions to universities for scholarships, educational mentorships, internship opportunities and training to prepare for an ever-evolving workforce. For nearly 20 years, Kwame Foundation has been a champion for education and a philanthropic pillar in the St. Louis area and throughout the United States. For more information about Kwame Foundation, contact Lydia Huston at lhuston@kwamebuildinggroup.com or call (314) 754-5619.

Is Your Construction Company’s 2023 Budget Built on a Solid Foundation?

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Submitted by Schmersahl Treloar & Co

By now, many construction businesses have at least outlined the parameters of their 2023 budgets, if not finished them entirely. No matter where you’re at in the process, it doesn’t hurt to double-check your methodology to ensure your spending plan for next year is built on a solid foundation.

Start with spending

Often, the budget-setting process begins with an estimate of total revenue for the year. A better strategy, however, is to start with projected spending because it’s something over which you can exert a little more control.

Divide your expenses between hard and soft costs. As with individual project budgets, hard costs are the “brick and mortar” expenses directly related to physically completing work — such as equipment, materials and labor. Soft costs are indirect costs (such as insurance, fees and certifications) and overhead costs (such as office rent and furniture).

When you divide your budget into these two categories, you’ll have a better sense of which line items are variable and can be adjusted and where to apply cost-control measures. Throughout the year, check back on hard and soft costs to see whether new or overlooked ones are threatening the budget.

Heed historical lessons

Taking last year’s budget and adjusting the numbers for inflation may be tempting, but it usually doesn’t work. You can and should, however, review your construction company’s historical data to better identify relevant trends that could likely affect the budget throughout the year.

For example, study your income statements from the past several years. Start with the most recent one and compare each line item to past statements. If you detect an upward or downward trend for a certain expense, adjust the line item accordingly.

Such a review presents the opportunity to determine where your operation has consistently spent above or below allotted budget constraints. It could also reveal whether you need to readjust spending, cut back operations or look for ways to raise capital.

Be realistic

Calculate your gross margin, which is the difference between net sales revenue and the cost of goods sold (COGS). In construction, COGS typically refers to direct costs, such as materials and labor, as well as indirect costs or general conditions.

Compare your gross margins from previous years with the average gross margins for the industry segments in which you perform work. You should be able to locate this data through trade publications or industry associations. Knowing these numbers will help you refine your current budget and set prices for jobs as the year goes along.

When it comes to projecting gross margin, temper optimism with pragmatism. A 5% sales growth last year doesn’t automatically translate to 5% growth this year. Consider other qualifying factors such as staff turnover, current market costs of labor and materials, the need to buy or lease new equipment, local market demand, and the overall economy.

Seize opportunities

An objective review of your budget, as well as your budget-setting and -management process, can provide useful insights. Feel free to contact us for help identifying trends that may be hidden in your financial statements, as well as implementing strategies to leverage opportunities and guard against risk.

Call us with questions at 314-966-2727

St. Louis Downtown Airport Enters 2023 Prepared for Continued Growth

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2022 proved to be a solid year for St. Louis Downtown Airport, with highlights ranging from the arrival of a new director and continuation of strong flight operations to the return of in-person events aimed at growing the aviation industry workforce. Add in the groundbreaking for a significant new project and expansion plans revealed for its largest tenant, and the airport is looking to the future with an eye on continued growth.

To help lead operations at the busiest airport in Illinois outside of Chicago, Bi-State Development welcomed Sandra Shore as the new director of St. Louis Downtown Airport in February. With the airport’s enviable location just minutes from downtown St. Louis making it a popular choice for those flying into the bi-state area for business and major events, overall flight operations remained strong and steady last year under Shore’s leadership. A substantial increase in charter flights can be directly correlated to the NASCAR Cup Series race held at nearby World Wide Technology Raceway in Madison, Ill., which drew 56 charter flights in June. The airport also recorded two of its three best months in fuel sales in the last five years in 2022, a trend expected to continue in 2023.

St. Louis Downtown Airport will see additional growth in 2023 when its largest tenant, Gulfstream Aerospace, expands operations and adds 140 new jobs. Gulfstream Aerospace is one of the tenants that will benefit from the latest infrastructure investment underway at the airport – a new ground engine run up and compass calibration pad. Construction began last fall on the $5.4 million project, which secured $5 million in state funding through the $45 billion Rebuild Illinois Capital Infrastructure Plan. Upon completion in 2023, it will improve production safety, reliability and efficiency, boost airport businesses and increase global competitiveness for southwestern Illinois and the State of Illinois. Five million dollars in state funding was secured for the project.

Gulfstream Aerospace and other aircraft maintenance tenants will use the project’s new airfield pavement with jet blast deflectors to perform aircraft maintenance tests requiring the operation of an engine at high power on the ground for several minutes generating elevated noise levels. The new engine run up area will be located 1,850 feet from other parked aircraft and isolated from airport operations, ultimately reducing aircraft engine run-up noise by more than 50% and accommodating the airport’s largest aircraft.

Located on 1,000 acres in St. Clair County in Cahokia Heights and Sauget, St. Louis Downtown Airport and its tenants contribute more than $422 million in economic impact for the region and more than 1,500 full-time and part-time jobs, according to the most recent study conducted by the Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT).

“The diversity of operations occurring at St. Louis Downtown Airport contributes to our role as an economic engine for the bi-state St. Louis region and makes us a key contributor to the tremendous strength of the aviation sector in the State of Illinois,” said Mary Lamie, Executive Vice President of Multi Modal Enterprises at Bi-State Development, which owns and operates the airport as one of its enterprises.

The economic impact of St. Louis Downtown Airport and other airports in the St. Louis region was the focus of an insightful panel discussion hosted by the St. Louis Regional Freightway in November. Shore and directors from four other busy airports – St. Louis Lambert International Airport, Spirt of St. Louis Airport, MidAmerica St. Louis Airport and St. Louis Regional Airport – participated in the event. The panel discussion highlighted the unique attributes and contributions of each airport and underscored the collective impact of the aviation industry in the region.

“The collaboration that takes place among our airports is unique in the aviation industry and a model for success,” said Shore. “Collectively, between airport operations and tenants, our five facilities account for more than 36,500 jobs and generate a combined annual economic impact that exceeds $10 billion and is growing.”

A key focus within that growing industry is attracting future workers to fill a wide range of positions. With that in mind, St. Louis Downtown Airport welcomed the return of in-person events at the airport in 2022 in collaboration with St. Louis University’s Oliver L. Parks Department of Aviation Science (SLU). The Illinois Mathematics and Science Academy (IMSA) joined with SLU to host Aviation Day for Educators in June, bringing educators from six school districts in southwestern Illinois and Eastern Illinois University to the airport. SLU’s Aviation Summer Academy attracted participants from 11 states who spent a week learning about different aspects of aviation and related careers and experienced the thrill of flying. Girls in Aviation Day in October, a career expo, provided an opportunity for more than 100 young women to climb into the cockpits of various aircraft and fly planes in high-tech simulators.

Bi-State Development (BSD) owns and operates St. Louis Downtown Airport and the Gateway Arch Riverboats, and operates the Gateway Arch Revenue Collections Center and Gateway Arch trams. BSD is the operator of the main public transportation system in eastern Missouri and southwestern Illinois, which includes the 87 vehicle, 46-mile MetroLink light rail system; a MetroBus vehicle fleet of approximately 24 battery electric vehicles and more than 260 clean-burning diesel buses that operate on 58 MetroBus routes; and Metro Call-A-Ride, a paratransit fleet of 123 vans. BSD also operates the St. Louis Regional Freightway, the region’s freight district. To learn more about St. Louis Downtown Airport, visit www.stlouisdowntownairport.com.

Concrete Council of St. Louis Hosts Annual Concrete Pavements Seminar

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PDH and CEU credits available to attendees

The Concrete Council of St. Louis is hosting its annual Concrete Pavements Seminar Sponsored by Concrete Strategies and MAPEI on Wednesday, February 8th at Fabick Headquarters located at One Fabick Drive, Fenton, MO 63026. The Concrete Pavements Seminar gathers some of the brightest minds in the industry to discuss a variety of topics related to concrete paving. This year’s seminar features six sessions beginning at 8:00 a.m. and continuing through 2:15 p.m. Attendees may receive 6 PDH or CEU credits for their time.  The cost is $100 for members, government agencies and non-profits and $125 for non-members.

“We look forward to hosting the Concrete Pavements Seminar every year,” said Oliver Dulle, Executive Director of the Concrete Council. “We have such an incredible list of speakers this year, and with the variety of topics being discussed, I’m confident our attendees will come away from this event feeling great about how much practical information they learned. We are also pleased to provide PDH credits in a convenient format.”

The agenda is as follows:

8:00 a.m. – Concrete Parking Lot Overlays I Metro Transit Various Projects

9:00 a.m. – Concrete Pavement Myths

10:00 a.m. – Pavement Lift Cycle Savings in Dollars and CO2

11:00 a.m. – Specific Revisions to Enhance Performance and Reduce Cost

12:30 p.m. – Freeze-Thaw Durability Issues and Solutions

1:30 p.m. – Nano Silicia Internal Curing and Liquid Fly Ash Technology

Registrations must be completed by Monday, February 6. To register to attend, visit the seminar’s website at Concrete Pavements Seminar (constantcontactpages.com). For questions or more information, please contact Gina Heck (gheck@blacktwigllc.com)

The Concrete Council of St. Louis’ primary goal is to increase the incremental use of concrete construction in the area by serving as a resource to owners and agencies considering concrete construction. Membership is made up of firms in the St. Louis area involved in concrete production and construction. The Council provides technical input, site visits, inhouse presentations and cost comparisons, at no cost, for consideration of concrete construction. For more information, visit www.concretecouncil.com.

Home Builders Association Donates $15,764 to Youth in Need

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On behalf of the Home Builders Charitable Foundation (HBCF), 2023 HBA President Jeremy Roth (Elite Development Services/McBride Homes) (left) presented a $15,764 donation to Youth In Need director of philanthropy Demetria Lightfoot.

The donation will be used to renovate a bathroom at the organization’s emergency shelter. The updates will ensure the youth have a safe homes while in crisis and provide vulnerable young adults with a space that is comfortable, clean and updated. The youth in the emergency shelter have experienced significant, and often traumatic, life challenges. Youth In Need’s goal is to help prepare them with the skills needed to live a successful, independent life, and provide a warm and aesthetically pleasing space that they call home, even if temporarily.

The HBA is a local trade association of nearly 600 member firms representing the residential construction industry. The Home Builders Charitable Foundation, the HBA’s charitable arm, is a non-profit organization dedicated to providing housing assistance to people or organizations with special shelter needs.

People On The Move In The Local Construction Industry

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Knoebel Construction Promotes Jesse Schilligo to the Executive Team

Jesse Schilligo

Knoebel Construction, a top St. Louis-based general contractor, has promoted Jesse Schilligo to Director of Operations. Schilligo brings more than 13 years of commercial construction experience with expertise in field management and joined Knoebel in 2017 as Project Manager. As Director of Operations, he is responsible for ensuring that all project teams produce high-quality work and deliver projects on-time and on-budget. Schilligo advises, trains and oversees Knoebel’s project management and compliance teams. He also serves as the internal subcontract advocate, managing workloads and holding project partners accountable for deliverables. 

Alberici Constructors, Inc. Promotes Fred Biermann to Executive Vice President

Firm Also Launches Integrated Project Support Services Departmentto Strengthen Operational Efficiencies

Fred Biermann

As it begins its 105th year of building, Alberici Constructors, Inc. has promoted Fred Biermann to executive vice president and strengthened operational excellence with a new Integrated Project Support Services Department to be headed by John Smith.  Alberici is one of the largest privately-held companies in St. Louis and one of the nation’s largest construction firms.  Alberici reported revenue of $2.7 billion in 2022, including $330 million from St. Louis area projects.  It employs 3,500 companywide.  

Biermann leads Alberici’s nationally-ranked civil, marine, and heavy industrial markets. He has orchestrated several highly complex projects including the $1.9 billion Olmsted Lock and Dam on the Ohio River; the nearly $600 million in improvements to the Naval Submarine Base in Kings Bay, Ga. for the Naval Facilities Engineering Systems Command (NAVFAC); and the $400 million Fermilab Long Baseline Neutrino Facility/Deep Underground Neutrino Experiment project in Lead, S.D.

Biermann serves on the board of directors for the Associated General Contractors (AGC) of America, where he chairs the Union Contractors Committee and is an active member of the AGC of Missouri Labor Policy Committee. He also serves as a management co-chair of the Saint Louis Construction Cooperative (formerly PRIDE) and is an active member of the Waterways Council and Inland Rivers, Ports, and Terminals, Inc. Biermann previously served on the AGC of America’s U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Federal Acquisition, and Marine Contractors committees. He earned an MBA from Webster University, a marketing degree from Maryville University and has completed advanced management studies at the University of Chicago Booth School of Business.

January 20, 2023

KAI Enterprises and The UP Companies CEO Michael Kennedy, Jr. Named a 2023 St. Louis Titan 100

Michael Kennedy

Michael Kennedy, Jr., CEO of KAI Enterprises and The UP Companies (UPCO), has the prestigious honor of being named a 2023 St. Louis Titan 100 – a program recognizing the area’s most accomplished C-level executives for their exceptional leadership, vision and passion.

Collectively, the 2023 St. Louis Titan 100 and their companies employ more than 94,000 individuals and generate $28 billion dollars in annual revenues. They embody the true diversity of the St. Louis business landscape, representing technology, manufacturing, education, healthcare, construction/real estate, professional services, hospitality, transportation and non-profit organizations among many others. They will be honored at an annual awards ceremony on April 6.

“The Titan 100 are changing the way that business is done in St. Louis. These preeminent leaders have built a distinguished reputation that is unrivaled and preeminent in their field. We proudly recognize the Titan 100 for their efforts to shape the future of the St. Louis business community. Their achievements create a profound impact that makes an extraordinary difference for their customers and clients across the nation,” said Jaime Zawmon, President of Titan CEO.

As CEO of Minority Business Enterprise KAI (architecture, engineering and construction firm) and UPCO (electrical, carpentry and labor subcontractor services), Kennedy has successfully embraced change in the ever-evolving design and construction industry. After years of developing progressive resolutions, Kennedy managed to grow KAI’s revenue from $8 million in his first year as president to more than $55 million. He founded The UP Companies in 2011 and propelled the subcontractor’s revenue from $3.7 million in its first year to more than $70 million.

A second-generation leader, Kennedy also strives to promote diversity within the industry workforce, develop new clients and expand into new markets, all while leading the companies’ strategic vision and business alignment to transform underserved communities through integrated design and construction excellence.

“We do this not just through the physical environment but also through serving the communities of the people who use them,” said Kennedy. “KAI seeks the most complex, culturally conscious and politically sensitive projects that will make lasting differences in the lives they touch. UPCO is our boots on the ground. We build up communities through diversity, innovation and integrity. This is a killer combination that creates great projects, builds great people, encourages extreme diversity and transforms the communities we work in all over the country.”

Under Kennedy’s leadership, KAI has expanded from St Louis to across the nation with offices in Dallas-Fort Worth; Atlanta; and Kansas City, Kansas; and has grown a diverse staff from 60 to over 150. Through a complete company re-branding effort and a focus on talent acquisition, training and staff diversification, he and his team grew UPCO from 34 employees to well over 470 office and field staff. KAI and UPCO’s core industries include healthcare, higher and elementary education, commercial office, retail, public housing, water, government and transportation.

Clayco Hires Cathie Funderburg as Senior Director of Corporate Services

Cathie Funderburg

Clayco, a full-service, turnkey real estate, architecture, engineering, design-build and construction firm, announced today that it is welcoming Cathie Funderburg as Senior Director of Corporate Services.

“Cathie will be filling a critical role leading all of our corporate services as we continue our rapid growth,” said Bob Clark, Executive Chairman & Founder of Clayco. “We need a disciplined approach to all our real estate, facility upgrades, food service and security. Cathie brings all that and more. We have worked with her for years when she was our client at Express Scripts and we have always been impressed with Cathie. We look forward to having her join our team.”

Funderburg brings over 22 years of experience leading efficient and effective day-to-day operational success at large, high-growth companies. She joins Clayco from CBRE, the world’s largest commercial real estate services and investment firm where she served as the Facilities Director. Previously, she served as the Facilities Director at Express Scripts, where she oversaw day-to-day operations inside the 1,000,000-square-foot facility as well as its Pharmacy Distribution Center – the two largest facilities located in St. Louis, Missouri and Whitestown, Indiana. During her time with Express Scripts, Funderburg successfully implemented a site optimization strategy by working cross functionally with 20 departments over the span of two years. She began her career as Senior Facility Manager at Cassidy Turley, now Cushman Wakefield.

“I have always had positive experiences and interactions with Clayco, which built the Express Scripts campus,” Funderburg said. “This role goes beyond just managing buildings, but encompasses strategy, space planning, and project management that ultimately impacts the overall employee experience.” Funderburg will be responsible for directing and controlling the activities of the Strategic Facilities Planning Process, Corporate Capital Portfolio Management for all Clayco offices in the USA (excluding jobsite mobilization), planning and design, PM Practices, Corporate Engineering Standards and Specifications as well as the development of the global capital long-range plan. She will oversee facility operations, maintenance and management, as well as team member services and amenities, space and master planning, project management and planning, budgeting and procurement of furniture, fixtures, and equipment and office supplies.

Funderburg will also be responsible for Clayco’s capital investment governance and business processes to ensure proper evaluation, cross-functional review and decision-making related to USA capital investments

Kwame Building Group hires Senior Project Manager and Project Engineer

Kwame Building Group (KWAME) has added Stan Richardson as Senior Project Manager and Majid Naseh as Project Engineer.

Richardson has 15 years of industry experience in new construction and renovation for healthcare, K-12 and higher education facilities as well as transportation and public works projects. He is overseeing the City of St. Louis Cervantes Convention Center Expansion and Modernization Project. He holds a Bachelor of Science in Industrial Engineering from University of Missouri-Columbia, and he serves as a board member for Ali Academy.

Naseh brings 20 years of industry experience. He is currently working on several St. Louis projects where he is responsible for assisting the project managers with project budgets and cost reports, reviewing and coordinating submittals and RFIs, subcontractor management and maintaining communication with the client and project team. Naseh holds a Master of Engineering in Civil and Environmental Engineering from Portland State University and is a certified Engineer in Training (EIT).

Knoebel Construction Promotes Joe Pankratz to Executive Team

Joe Pankratz

Knoebel Construction, a top St. Louis-based general contractor, has promoted Joe Pankratz to Vice President of Operations. Pankratz brings nearly 15 years of experience in the commercial construction industry. Since joining Knoebel in 2012, he has served in numerous capacities ranging from Superintendent, Project Manager, Director of Pre-Construction and now as Vice President of Operations. Pankratz is responsible for implementing company-wide best practices and procedures, establishing benchmarks and key performance indicators, and cultivating cross-departmental efficiencies. In his role as Vice President of Operations, he oversees all activities across departments to increase productivity, client satisfaction and project results.

S. M. Wilson & Co. promotes Brad Homes to Senior Project Manager and Emily Bozarth to Assistant Project Manager

S. M. Wilson & Co., a St. Louis-based construction manager and contracting firm, has promoted Brad Homes to Senior Project Manager and Emily Bozarth to Assistant Project Manager.

Homes has worked at S. M. Wilson over the past eleven years as a project engineer, assistant project manager and project manager. As Senior Project Manager, Homes is now responsible for overseeing the entire construction process from groundbreaking to closeout including managing the project team, maintaining documentation and ensuring the project aligns with the client’s budget and schedule goals. He is currently working on the new $7.5 million fire station and administrative building project for the Godfrey Fire Protection District in Godfrey, IL.

Bozarth joined S. M. Wilson in 2016 as an intern through the firm’s Project Engineer Intern Program. Since then, her work has focused on the firm’s healthcare and medical facility projects, ranging from $75,000 to $32 million. She is currently working on several projects at Blessing Hospital in Quincy, IL. As Assistant Project Manager she is now responsible for subcontractors management including workforce diversity and inclusion, reviewing and coordinating submittals and RFIs, and maintaining communication with the client and project team.

Promotion of Meredith Greene at BEX Construction Services

Meredith Greene

Meredith Greene, who joined BEX Construction Services as office manager in 2019, was recently promoted to director of human resources and administration. A member of the firm’s Executive Leadership Committee, Greene helps drive processes, systems and organizational development for BEX Construction Services.

Greene empowers others with the strong support networks she puts in place for the entire BEX team and her passion for service to clients and effective collaboration between field and office. She earned her bachelor’s degree in interdisciplinary studies with emphases in political science, history and communications from the University of Missouri-Columbia.

Greene is engaged in friend-raising and fund-raising for Youth In Need and the Child Advocacy Center of Northeast Missouri. Her industry participation extends to the Building Owners & Managers Association, for which she has co-chaired the Golf Prize Committee, and the Maryland Heights Chamber of Commerce, where she is active on two committees. She is also a member of St. Louis Forum.

Prior to her career in construction, Greene led operations for retail stores in 14 markets across California, Oregon and Washington, successfully driving key performance indicators.

January 13, 2023

Oculus Inc. Adds Joshua Rayles as Managing Principal of the Dallas Office

Joshua Rayles

Oculus Inc., an award-winning, WBE-certified architecture and interior design firm, has hired Joshua Rayles, AIA NCARB, to serve as the managing principal of the firm’s Dallas office. In his role, Rayles will oversee the daily operations, business development, and team management in Dallas, as well as focus on enhancing the firm’s regional footprint in the aviation, healthcare, commercial, and specialty retail markets.

Oculus entered the Dallas market in 2003 with 20 employees and a focus on strategic planning, implementation and project planning for mid-size banks and small healthcare companies. Since then, the firm has grown to 55 full-time employees and expanded its client roster, which includes restaurants, senior living facilities, retail buildings and U.S. federal agencies such as the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs and the General Services Administration.

This past year, Oculus hired three staff members to join its Dallas office to support the company’s growth and expansion in the Southwest market. While Oculus serves all markets from its Dallas office, the firm’s Southwest presence maintains a heavy concentration in healthcare, aviation, higher education, commercial workplace, light industrial and retail work.

Rayles brings more than 18 years of architectural experience to Oculus with expertise in a variety of projects ranging from ground up corporate mixed-use campuses to airport terminals. He most recently served as the project executive with aviation experience for several high-profile projects, including overlooking the capital improvement plan, defining programs, and architecture for Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport and the corporate headquarters relocation for CPS Energy’s renovation to the 500,000-square-foot former AT&T building in downtown San Antonio.

Rayles received his Bachelor of Architecture degree from the University of Oklahoma and is a member of the Urban Land Institute, the Texas Real Estate Commission, and the American Association of Airport Executives. He is currently overseeing the upfront planning and design of a clinic and community center for Cook Children’s in Dallas.

In addition to its location in Dallas, Oculus Inc. is headquartered in St. Louis with another office in Portland, Ore; they also have staff locations in Orlando, Fla., Hampton, Va., and Mesa, Ariz.

KAI Hires Andrew Kerr-Grant as Senior Project Architect

Andrew Kerr-Grant

KAI is pleased to share the hiring of Andrew Kerr-Grant, AIA, NCARB, LEED AP BD+C as its newest Senior Project Architect at its St. Louis office.

Kerr-Grant boasts more than 30 years of experience as a Senior Project Architect and Project Manager. He has served as the lead architect for the design, documentation, and implementation of projects for higher education, K-12 schools, government, research and development, commercial, corporate, and industrial facilities. His projects have ranged in scope from an $87 million Armed Forces Readiness Center to small repair and renovation projects and everything in between.

Prior to KAI, Kerr-Grant was a Senior Architect/Project Manager for St. Louis-based Etegra, Inc.; a Senior Project Architect for Core States Group; and a Senior Project Architect/Project Manager/Architectural Group Manager for Benham, A Haskell Company.

Originally from Australia, he earned his Bachelor of Architecture from the University of Melbourne. He also has continuing education from both St. Louis Community College and Harvard Graduate School of Design. He is a Registered Architect in Missouri, Illinois, Minnesota, and the District of Columbia and has professional registrations from the National Council Architect Registration Board (NCARB), U.S. Green Build Council (USGBC, LEED AP BD+C) and the Project Management Institute (PMP).

Kerr-Grant also serves on the AIA St. Louis Design Awards and Events Planning committees and is a member of the St. Louis Revit Users Group.

He resides in Webster Groves with his wife Mary and children Ravenna, Annelise and Cameron.

Cathy M. Westerheide Retires

Cathy Westerheid

Career at Golterman & Sabo Spanned Four Decades 

Cathy Westerheide, Director of Sales for G&S Acoustics and FabricWall, will retire effective December 29, 2022, marking the conclusion of a notable 29-year career with Golterman & Sabo, the parent company of G & S Acoustics.   

“Cathy’s relationships with our customers and reps have been outstanding,” says Herb Golterman, CEO.   “She has that rare talent of being extremely technical and organized, yet outgoing and customer focused.  We’ve heard from many customers that she is one of the best in the business and we could not agree more!” 

“Seeing our department grow from just Herb and me to a talented team of 15 people has been incredibly rewarding,” says Westerheide reflecting on her career.  Under her leadership, G & S Acoustics has grown into a multi-million- dollar business.  

Westerheide has been with G&S since 1994, having worked as an estimator, sales assistant, sales representative, national sales manager, and director. “The most rewarding part of my career was the many friends I made.”  In retirement, she plans to spend quality time with her grandchildren, and travel. 

Westerheide responsibilities will be split among two established leaders in the company.  Liz Holley the manager for G&S Acoustics.  Kathy Helfrich the manager for FabricWall.   

January 6, 2023

Jim Driscoll Joins Kadean Construction as Director of Preconstruction

Jim Driscoll

Kadean Construction is pleased to announce that Jim Driscoll has joined company’s St. Louis headquarters as Director of Preconstruction.  He will be responsible for the overall development of construction planning, design and strategies for negotiated and design-build project opportunities that meet the client’s vision, expectations, and budget for each project prior to the start of construction work.

Driscoll has more than 15 years of experience leading true design-build commercial and industrial construction projects across multiple markets.  He most recently worked as Director of Operations at Echelon Constructors.

“Jim brings a highly focused strategic and innovative approach to our negotiated and design-build opportunities at the local and national levels,” said Mike Eveler, President of Kadean Construction. “His analytical methodology and deep experience across all areas of project planning and management will strengthen our ability to turn project concepts into realities and ensure that the transition from preconstruction to construction continues the seamless Kadean tradition.”

Driscoll is a licensed Professional Engineer and a LEED Accredited Professional.  He graduated from the University of Missouri – Rolla with a B.S. in Civil Engineering.  

Louer Facility Planning Announces New President

Yvette Paris

Louer Facility Planning, Inc. is announcing a change in leadership, along with celebrating 27 years in business.

Jane Louer, Founder, has announced her retirement, effective at the end of 2022, and has stepped down as President of the firm.  The firm Directors have promoted Yvette Paris to the position of President.  Louer will remain a Vice-President. 

Paris, NCIDQ, LEED® AP, the firm’s long-time Design Director and recent Vice President, is taking over as President. Paris has been with the company for 17 years and is now the majority owner, continuing the transition plan put in place three years ago.

“Yvette has truly shaped the company,” said Louer. “Her creative talents, dedication to detail and level of unrelenting customer service has enabled us to win and retain wonderful clients. I remain proud of the impact our company has had on commercial interior space in our region and optimistic about our continued achievement and growth.”

Commenting on the anniversary and the transition, Paris states, “We are incredibly proud to have provided commercial interior design and furniture products for the past 27 years.  We continuously strive to stay current on the latest trends in office design and furniture and to be the go-to resource for workplace design solutions in our marketplace. I’m excited for this new chapter and all the future holds.”

IMPACT Strategies Promotes Derek Hinrichs to Controller

Derek Hinrichs

IMPACT Strategies announces the promotion of Derek Hinrichs from Senior Accountant to Controller. Hinrichs holds a master in accountancy degree from the University of Missouri and is a Certified Public Accountant (CPA). Prior to joining IMPACT Strategies in 2021, Hinrichs spent more than ten years at a public accounting firm where he was a tax manager and consultant.

His role as Controller involves a wide range of critical responsibilities in support of the company’s growth strategies. Hinrichs will oversee all financial functions of the business involved in the accounting process, including accounts receivable, accounts payable, payroll, budgeting, forecasting, and compliance.

IMPACT Strategies President Mark Hinrichs said, “We are excited to see Derek move into a key leadership position for the company as the head of our accounting team. He has demonstrated outstanding collaboration with our entire team, and we look forward to his contributions in the future.”

Knoebel Construction Promotes Jesse Schilligo to the Executive Team

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Knoebel Construction, a top St. Louis-based general contractor, has promoted Jesse Schilligo to Director of Operations. Schilligo brings more than 13 years of commercial construction experience with expertise in field management and joined Knoebel in 2017 as Project Manager. As Director of Operations, he is responsible for ensuring that all project teams produce high-quality work and deliver projects on-time and on-budget. Schilligo advises, trains and oversees Knoebel’s project management and compliance teams. He also serves as the internal subcontract advocate, managing workloads and holding project partners accountable for deliverables. 

Knoebel Construction, Inc. is a national general contractor specializing in retail center, multi-use, restaurant, grocery, healthcare and retail store construction. Projects range from major regional shopping centers to local restaurants. Celebrating its 40-year anniversary in 2021, Knoebel Construction provides full-service development and general contracting services to real estate development firms, independent restaurant and retail owners, and retailers. Centrally based in the St. Louis region, Knoebel Construction offers services nationwide. Knoebel is ranked among the largest general contractors in St. Louis by the St. Louis Business Journal and the Midwest by Engineering News-Record. For more information, visit www.knoebelconstruction.com or call (636) 326-4100.

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