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A Decade of Work by Contractors, Community and Collaborators Culminates in National Award for Diversity & Inclusion

in Associations/News

May 21 is World Day for Cultural Diversity for Dialogue and Development 2019

They say it takes a village to raise up a child.  An industry-focused village of builders, suppliers and community partners has been working together for more than 10 years to raise up and increase participation by minority- and women-owned businesses in Missouri’s construction industry. And their efforts are starting to pay off.

According to Steve Lewis, vice president of inclusion for the AGC of Missouri, here are just a few of the results of the decade-long effort:

  • Diverse membership in the AGC of Missouri has risen from miniscule 10 years ago to 14 percent today, with plans to grow total membership by an additional 25 percent over the next two years. Diversity within the AGCMO board of directors’ membership also has grown significantly, with currently five black (non-Hispanic) and 10 female members serving.
  • Becky Spurgeon, president of Interface Construction, a minority- owned business, currently serves as chair-elect and, in January 2020, will become chair of AGCMO’s board of directors.
  • Michael Kennedy, Jr., chief executive officer of KAI Enterprises, also a minority- owned business, will become vice chair of AGCMO’s Building Division in 2020.
  • A robust AGCMO Diversity Committee crosses all disciplines within the industry and is currently comprised of 20 members, with 45 percent diverse representation.
  • Three St. Louisans serve on AGC of America’s national Diversity & Inclusion Committee, and Frank Wilson, president of BFW Contracting LLC, serves as chair.

The first chapter within the 89-chapter AGC of America to hire a full-time diversity director 10 years ago, the Missouri AGC chapter was recognized in April with the AGC of America national Diversity & Inclusion Excellence Award for being a champion in advancing diversity and fostering a culture of inclusion within its workforce, supply chain and in the communities in which it serves.  The award was presented at the AGCA 2019 national convention in Denver to Lewis; Spurgeon; Wilson; Monica Bailey, director of diversity, McCarthy Building Companies; and Len Toenjes, president, AGCMO.

Wilson also received a national Chairman of the Year Award for his service, leadership and dedication as chair of the AGCA’s Diversity and Inclusion Committee. Other St. Louis-based members serving on the national committee include Bailey; Michael Kennedy, Jr., chief executive officer of KAI Enterprises; and Lewis.

“AGC of Missouri, as one of the first AGC chapters to dedicate time and resources to diverse businesses, has been a leader in advancing diversity and inclusion within the association,” said Brynn Huneke, director, diversity & inclusion, member engagement for AGC of America.  “AGC of America was honored to present them with the 2019 Diversity & Inclusion Excellence Award for an AGC Chapter.”

In addition to great leadership, Lewis believes it’s been the broad range of community partners and programs that has created sustainable and growing diversity in Missouri. The former AGC of St. Louis (now part of AGC of Missouri) participated in the Stempel Plan Mentor-Protégé program in a joint venture with the St. Louis Minority Business Council. Today, AGCMO provides significant financial support and serves on the board of directors of the Regional Union Construction Center (RUCC). In addition, many AGCMO members serve on the advisory boards of companies that participate in the RUCC program. From 2001-14, AGC of St. Louis operated the Construction Careers Center Charter High School that provided an open opportunity for high school students to be introduced to the construction industry. The CCC offered gateways to the construction industry through programs like Ameren’s Skilled Trade Education Program, preparing students for careers in the energy industry.  CCC also participated in the Architectural, Construction and Engineering (ACE) mentoring program whereby many students earned internships with AGC-member companies.

AGCMO also is a member and sponsor of the National Society of Black Engineers and its Pre-College Initiative Program that prepares and introduces students to Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) for the careers of today and tomorrow.  Other major community partnering programs included MoDOT’s I-64 Workforce Development Program, the Stan Musial Veterans Memorial Bridge project, and the current NGA West project.  AGCMO is also active and a sponsor of the Building Union Diversity (BUD) program. Among others, it sponsors Missouri Women in Trades, providing support for tradeswomen in the industry. AGCMO also is an investor and serves on the board of directors and technical assistance committee of the Contractor Loan Fund, a $10.6 million private equity fund that provides financing for minority- and women-owned businesses. An AGCMO representative also serves as a board member for the St. Louis Agency on Training and Employment (SLATE) and also regularly participates in MoDOT and MOKAN training symposia. AGCMO is a member of the MoDOT statewide Inclusion Advisory Council and Regional Diversity Council.  AGCMO also serves on the Diversity Committee and Cultural Competency Task Force of the St. Louis Council of Construction Consumers and the Education and Diversity Committee of the St. Louis Construction Cooperative, a labor-management organization.

Lewis wants to thank the members of AGCMO’s Diversity & Inclusion Committee for their tireless efforts that continue today:

  • Monica Bailey, McCarthy Building Companies
  • Sedrick Brandt, Brandt Contracting Inc.
  • Don Buchmueller, EM Harris Construction
  • Roslyn Croft, Tarlton Corporation
  • Steve Faust, icon Mechanical Construction & Engineering, LLC
  • Amy Haeger, AME Constructors, Inc.
  • Steven Harris, RubinBrown LLP
  • Howard Hayes, Paric Corporation
  • Michael B. Kennedy, Jr., KAI Enterprises
  • Thomas E. Kuhn, Millstone Weber, LLC
  • Vicki LaRose, Civil Design, Inc.
  • Steve Lewis, AGCMO (staff liaison)
  • Emily Martin, Aschinger Electric Company
  • Donald Rosenberger, PE, Delta Companies Inc.
  • Patricia Schaeffer, D & S Fencing Co., Inc.
  • Roger Spearman, A-1 Private Investigations, LLC
  • Robert Taylor, Realm Construction, Inc.
  • John VanAsdale, BSI Constructors, Inc.
  • Ronald Wiese, Alberici Constructors, Inc.
  • Frank Wilson, BFW Contracting LLC
  • Scott Wilson, S.M. Wilson & Co. (chair)
  • Michael Zambrana, Pangea Group

The Associated General Contractors of America (AGC) is the leading association for the construction industry. AGC represents more than 26,000 firms, including over 6,500 of America’s leading general contractors, and over 9,000 specialty-contracting firms. More than 10,500 service providers and suppliers are also associated with AGC, all through a nationwide network of chapters.

The Associated General Contractors of Missouri is the leading voice of the construction industry in Missouri, representing over 500 commercial, industrial, heavy and highway contractors, industry partners and related firms in 110 counties throughout Missouri.



Concrete Polishing Council of the American Society of Concrete Contractors Relaunches Tradesman & Craftsman Certifications

in Associations/News

The Concrete Polishing Council (CPC), a specialty council of the American Society of Concrete Contractors (ASCC), St. Louis, MO, has relaunched its Tradesman and Craftsman certifications.  The certification programs were begun by the Concrete Polishing Association of America, precursor of the CPC.

A certified Tradesman requires knowledge on the proper procedure to polish concrete but lacks sufficient work experience to qualify as a Craftsman.  Craftsman certification is open to those who have achieved Tradesman certification and have a minimum of 4,500 hours of work experience in surface preparation, grinding, edging, chemical application, honing, polishing and polishing equipment maintenance.  Recertification is necessary every five years and requires successful completion of a written examination.

Those applying for Tradesman certification may purchase the Tradesman Certification Manual, an 86-page booklet covering Safety, Polished Concrete, Grinders/Equipment, Diamond Tooling, Maximum Refinement, Chemicals and Concrete.  The book also includes a Glossary and the CPC Position Statements.  The certification exam is based on the Manual.  Cost is $50 for CPC members and $65 for non-members.  An online review course covering the same information and with sample test questions is available to help technicians prep for the exam.  The review course is $150 for members and $190 for non-members.

The Tradesman examination, also online, is approximately two hours and consists of 50 multiple choice questions.  It requires a score of 70% or better.  CPC members pay $250 to take the exam; $315 for non-members.

Craftsman certification requires a passing grade on the Tradesman exam and 4,500 hours of verified work experience.  Work experience forms for employed workers, self-employed workers, and union laborers are available online.  Craftsman certification is $75 for members and $100 for non-members.

The concrete polishing certification program provides the industry with distinction between skill levels based on knowledge and real-world experience.  Polishing contractors can use the program to provide employees long-term goals toward education, training and mastery.  Owners and general contractors can utilize it to set specifications and determine the best qualified bid list.

The CPC was formed to provide standards, education and a professional network for polishing contractors and others serving in the industry. The primary goals are to furnish training opportunities and certification programs for members and to share information on best practices with the design and construction community.

The American Society of Concrete Contractors is a non-profit organization dedicated to enhancing the capabilities of those who build with concrete, and to providing them a unified voice in the construction industry.  Members include concrete contracting firms, manufacturers, suppliers and others interested in the concrete industry such as architects, specifiers and distributors.  There are approximately 770 member companies in the United States and 15 foreign countries.  For more information, visit or call the ASCC office at (866) 788-2722.

For more information on this program go to

Laclede’s Landing Hails Memorial Day Completion of Lucas Ave Project

in Associations/Companies/News


St. Louis-based Stika Brothers Concrete Contracting, Inc. is the lead contractor for the  Lucas Avenue Project in Laclede’s Landing, a high-impact effort wrapping up this weekend that creates vehicular access to the Landing’s south end and features pedestrian-friendly sidewalks with trees and lighting.

John Clark, president of the Laclede’s Landing Community Improvement District, said the $350,000 infrastructural project creates a new main artery access point to the Landing connecting Lucas Avenue from Leonor K. Sullivan Boulevard to Lumiere Boulevard (Third Street). Clark said the newly rebuilt section literally paves the way for the growing amount of residential development there. Advantes Development is converting the former Bi-State Development headquarters at 701 North First Street into Peper Lofts. Advantes Principal Brian Minges has two more Landing structures under contract – the former Hoffman Building (700 North Second) and the Greeley Building (618-624 North Second) – for a mixed-use, residential-retail redevelopment.

“Brian is seeing great success with the Peper Lofts, the Landing’s first-ever multifamily development that is quickly filling up,” said Clark. “With the completion of all the work on the Gateway Arch grounds and museum plus an additional $20 million in recent investments on the Landing with more to come, we anticipate increasing demand for additional residential options from those who want to live in this premier riverfront location.”

The new stretch of Lucas Avenue is anticipated to open this Monday, May 27.

S. M. Wilson, Christner Partner to Build $28 Million Expansion for COCA

in Companies/News


S. M. Wilson is building Phase 2 of the Center of Creative Arts (COCA) expansion that will nearly double the size of the nonprofit organization’s facility at 524 Trinity Avenue in St. Louis.

Phase 1 of the project was completed by S. M. Wilson in June 2018 and consisted of renovations to the Kuehner West Wing Facilities. Construction of Phase 2 – scheduled to reach completion in early 2020 – is currently under way and includes construction of the two-level Ferring East Wing addition.

Axi:Ome, Design Architect and Christner, Associate Design Architect are architects of record

A national leader in innovative arts education, COCA serves more than 50,000 people annually of all ages, backgrounds and ability levels throughout the Greater St. Louis area. As demand for the organization’s services continues to increase, the existing facility no longer has adequate capacity.

In 2015, COCA launched the Create Our Future campaign, a multi-year fundraising effort to transform its University City campus. COCA has raised $45 million to fund the expansion and renovation project and build capital reserves and endowment funds for scholarships, support services, artistic and educational programming.

“This expansion will allow COCA to serve more students from throughout the St. Louis community and ensure that we remain a part of what makes St. Louis a great place to work, live, and raise a family, for years to come,” said COCA Board President Jesse Hunter.

A new 450-seat theatre features a core and shell made of primarily concrete. Foundations, columns, walls and decks are a mix of load-bearing masonry and structural steel, according to S. M. Wilson President Amy Berg. The extreme height of the masonry walls makes them unique. Standing 50 and 52 feet high, the structural loading sequence, wind bracing and assembly of the load-bearing masonry walls were crucial during design, she said.

“The one-of-a-kind theatre is also difficult to build due to the 11 different floor elevations,” Berg added. “S. M. Wilson had to be precise when planning the concrete pour sequence which required multiple forming and shoring systems.”

Because of the limited space and access of the project site, a tower crane was required in order to accommodate the long reaches for concrete pours and steel picks. Typically a tower crane would not be needed for a two-story building, Berg said, but due to the location, the height of the masonry walls, overhead obstructions, multi-level concrete deck pours and complex steel installations, it was a requirement for a successful project.

“COCA is an inspiring organization and a staple in our community,” she said. “We are proud to be a part of delivering this landmark project and look forward to how this new space will continue to innovate and inspire for generations to come.”

TJ Wies Contracting Presented with Safety and Quality Excellence Awards

in Companies/News

TJ Wies Contracting was recently presented with Safety and Quality Excellence Awards at the Association of the Wall and Ceiling Industry’s (AWCI) Annual Convention in National Harbor, Maryland. The Awards Brunch was held on April 25th.

AWCI is an international association with over 2,400 members. The membership consists of manufacturers, distributors, suppliers, and contractors throughout North America.

AWCI presented TJ Wies Contracting with the 2019 Excellence in Construction Safety Award – “for the greatest overall increase in safety, training, and awareness among AWCI member companies with between 500,000 and 1,000,000 man-hours in 2018.” This year marks the third time that TJ Wies Contracting has been presented with an Excellence in Safety Award by AWCI; other years include 2015 and 2017.

In addition to the Excellence in Safety Award, AWCI also awarded TJ Wies Contracting with the 2019 Excellence in Construction Quality Award in the Drywall category for work on the Jefferson National Expansion Memorial – Museum of Westward Expansion & Visitor Center, now referred to as Gateway Arch National Park. The Excellence in Quality Award “recognizes excellence in construction quality in the face of complicated and challenging projects.” TJ Wies Contracting received Excellence in Quality Awards in 2010 and 2011 as well, for Cardinals Kids Cancer Center and River City Casino, respectively.

Tim Wies stated, “I have always felt that safety, quality, and productivity were not mutually exclusive. Having now won these prestigious awards three times each, the industry has acknowledged what I have known from the start – a safe company can produce quality work while still being productive. Thank you to AWCI for the recognition and thanks to everyone on Team TJ Wies Contracting.”

Ryan Freeman Named President of PayneCrest Electric, Inc.

in Companies/News
Ryan Freeman

Ryan Freeman has joined PayneCrest Electric, Inc. to serve as president.  PayneCrest is one of the St. Louis area’s largest electrical contractors serving a variety of industries locally and nationally.  David Payne, who has served as PayneCrest’s president for 34 years, will remain chief executive officer of the firm.

Freeman has 18 years of experience in construction management and executive leadership, most recently serving as a senior vice president at McCarthy.  He has earned a number of honors including being named a “40 under 40” high achiever by the national publication Building Design + Construction and the St. Louis Business Journal.   He was also named an outstanding alumnus by Southern Illinois University – Edwardsville’s School of Engineering from which he graduated with a mechanical engineering degree. Freeman is a past board member of FamilyForward and currently serves on several committees for the St. Louis-based charity that fights child abuse and neglect.

PayneCrest is annually ranked among the nation’s “Top Specialty Contractors” by the construction trade publication Engineering News Record.  It reported revenues of $160 million in 2018, ranking among the top electrical contractors by the St. Louis Business Journal.  The firm provides industrial, commercial and telecommunications electrical contracting and engineering services.  It has been honored more than 25 times for construction excellence in the annual AGC Keystone Awards, including its work on the St. Louis area’s two largest electrical contracts – the Holcim Cement Plant and the Lumiere Place Casino and Hotel.

Most recent PayneCrest projects include the Pfizer research campus in Chesterfield, Mo., Centene’s expansion in Clayton, Mo., the expansion of the GM auto plant in Arlington, Tex. and the Facebook Data Center in Omaha, Neb.

Founded in 1954, PayneCrest specializes in solution-oriented industrial, commercial and telecom electrical contracting and engineering services for a local, regional and national clientele.  Clients span healthcare, technology, biotech, energy, industrial, institutional and commercial industries. Find out more at

IBEW Local 1 Electrician Wins 2018 IBEW Apprentice of the Year

in Companies/News/People

Deaf apprentice Cory Davis pursues his dream despite language barrier


IBEW LOCAL 1 PROUD: Cory Davis, a fifth-year IBEW Local 1 apprentice who has been deaf since birth, was named the 2018 IBEW Apprentice of the Year at the IBEW Construction and Maintenance Conference in Washington last month, making his IBEW Local 1 family proud. – IBEW photo

Much to the delight of his IBEW Local 1 family, Cory Davis, a fifth-year IBEW Local 1 apprentice who has been deaf since birth, has been named the 2018 IBEW Apprentice of the Year.

Davis, who was selected among 400 nominations nationwide, received the award last month at the 2019 IBEW Construction and Maintenance Conference in Washington. The 37-year-old father of four said he was shocked to learn he had won the prestigious honor.

“I want to say, ‘Thank you to Local 1 for getting me in and to my wife Rebecca for supporting me,’” Davis signed at the award ceremony. “I’m very proud to be a member of the IBEW.”

Davis, originally from Alton, IL, knew as a child he wanted to be an electrician. His father worked at a telecommunications company and brought his scrap home and Davis would practice wiring.

After receiving his associate degree in electrical technology from Harper Williams College in Palatine, IL, he stayed in the Chicago area and worked for a company building control panels.

Eventually, Davis moved back to the St. Louis area, married and started a family. He knew that he needed to join the IBEW to fulfill his lifelong dream of becoming an electrician.


IBEW LOCAL 1 Business Representative John Kahrhoff (left), St. Louis Electrical Industry Training Center Director Dennis Gralike (second to left) and Local 1 Business Manager Frank Jacobs (far right) knew from the very beginning that apprentice Cory Davis (standing left of Jacobs) had a bright future with Local 1. – Compass Communications photo

In 2014, he met IBEW Local 1 Business Representative John Kahrhoff at an air show. Davis and Kahrhoff, a licensed interpreter, struck up a conversation, and after learning about Davis’ qualifications and his goals, Kahrhoff knew Davis had a future with the IBEW Local 1 family and talked it over with Business Manager Frank Jacobs.

“John walked in with his credentials, and I said, ‘Let’s get him in here for an interview and make sure there is an interpreter,’” Jacobs said. “He came in for the interview and did really well, and he was selected into the apprenticeship program.”

The IBEW Electricians Joint Apprenticeship and Training Committee committed to giving Davis full communication access through sign language throughout his apprenticeship training.

“Cory finished the program at the top of his class and had the highest grade point average, and continues to receive outstanding evaluations on the job,” said Dennis Gralike, director of the St. Louis Electrical Industry Training Center.

Mike Hood, former vice president of Bell Electric who has bilateral hearing loss, took Davis under his wing and hired him in 2014. Hood has since retired, but still enjoys learning about Davis’ success on the job.

CORY DAVIS, a fifth year IBEW Local 1 apprentice who works at Bell Electric, is well respected on the job because of how good he is at what he does. – screencap

“The work that Cory does is impressive, and he is respected on the job,” Gralike said. “Even journeymen wiremen look up to him because of what he has accomplished and how good he is at what he does.”

Davis communicates with his co-workers via writing and pointing to blueprints. He attends union meetings on a regular basis and takes part in many his union’s community service opportunities.

“My advice to other apprentices or those considering an IBEW Local 1 apprenticeship is to just be yourself,” Davis said. “Show your knowledge of the industry and what you can do and work hard, and you’ll do just fine.”

In August, Davis will be attending the IBEW National Training Institute in Ann Arbor, MI, where he will be recognized by the IBEW National Training Committee – which oversees the curriculum for the IBEW/National Electrical Contractors Association (NECA) training program – as an outstanding apprentice.

“I imagine Cory will serve as an inspiration to the many instructors that will be attending the event,” Gralike said.

Metro Electric Supply Awarded Two Honors from Annual Ameren Awards Program

in Companies/News

Metro receives the Regional Electrical Distributor Award and Trade Ally of the Year 

Metro Electric Supply, a locally-owned and family operated wholesale residential, commercial and industrial electrical distributor, received the Trade Ally of the Year Award for the second year, and the Most Outstanding Regional Electrical Distributor of the Year Award at the 2019 Ameren Missouri BizSavers Program Trade Ally Network Awards. This is the third year in a row that Metro Electric Supply has been recognized by Ameren Missouri.

“It is an honor to be recognized with these awards,” says Bill Frisella, president of Metro Lighting and Metro Electric Supply. “Our continued standard of service from our employees shows in this recognition and that dedication is evident by our loyal customers.”

Metro’s energy use reduction saw them take the Trade Ally Network Awards’ highest honor in 2019. As the Trade Ally of the Year, Metro was recognized as a top performer in the energy efficiency industry. The distinguished honor goes to the trade ally that has reached the pinnacle of performance by achieving the greatest energy savings of any trade ally company in 2018. Metro’s progressive thinking, creative solutions and integration of incentives into their business has generated impressive energy savings throughout the year.

In addition to being award the Trade Ally of the Year, Metro Electric Supply was also honored with the Regional Electrical Distributor Award. This award is presented to a trade ally that sells a variety of electrical products located in the Midwest. This trade ally completed projects with the greatest energy savings in their category during the 2018 program year.

The Ameren Missouri BizSavers Trade Ally Network Awards are held every spring to celebrate the performance of Trade Allies in the previous year. The 2019 awards, which were held on Thursday, April 18, were based on program performance between March 2018 and February 2019. 

Metro Lighting and Metro Electric Supply is a locally-owned family business. In 1967, St. Louis Electric Supply consisted of one delivery truck and a basement and a garage overflowing with circuit breakers, wire, and conduit. For more information on energy savings, Metro’s services and locations or to shop online visit: or 

Building Careers

in People

The latest People in the News highlighting new hires, promotions, honors & recognition of the men and women in the St. Louis building community.

Murphy Company Adds Personnel

Lisa Felhaus

Lisa Feldhaus has been appointed as dispatch coordinator for Murphy Company. The announcement was made by Stephanie Oberle, service dispatch supervisor. Feldhaus has more than 25 years’ experience in customer service, most recently providing installation support and customer care within the HVAC industry. Prior to that, she served in customer service for a large insurance company. She is a graduate of McClure High School.

Drew Bartley

Drew Bartley has been named refrigeration project manager at Murphy Company, the area’s largest mechanical contracting and engineering firm. The announcement was made by Bob Eichelberger, manager, refrigeration solutions for Murphy.           Bartley began his career as an HVAC technician and has worked in various industrial and institutional settings.  Since 2015 he has worked in sales and service, most recently serving as a territory manager in the HVAC industry. He holds an associate’s degree in HVAC-refrigeration technology from Ranken Technical College. He is certified, Universal EPA and as an ammonia compressor operator.

Laura Wagoner

Laura Wagoner has joined Murphy Company as service collection specialist.  The announcement was made by Marty Coughlin, service accounting manager for the mechanical contracting and engineering firm. Since 2014 Wagoner has been an administrative assistant for a general contractor where she was responsible for invoicing and other bookkeeping duties. Prior to that she was a cashier and, later, a Courtesy Center manager at Schnucks.

Ryan Kramer

Ryan Kramer has been promoted to a newly created position as service sales manager at Murphy Company, the area’s largest mechanical contracting and engineering firm. The announcement was made by Chris Carter, vice-president, service. In making the announcement, Carter said, “Since joining Murphy Company as a service account manager in 2015, Ryan has shown consistent growth of his portfolio of accounts, a strong focus on teamwork, and solid ability to develop and expand our client relationships. In this new role, Ryan will be responsible for implementing strategies to expand relationships with key clients as well as leading the performance, growth and development of our service account management and inside sales team.”

A graduate of Fontbonne University, Kramer was formerly director of sales for Alexander Manufacturing, a position he attained after just two years with the firm.  Prior to his promotion in 2013, he served as key accounts manager, sales, managing more than 25 percent of the company’s overall sales, beginning in 2011.  Before that, he served as a manager, Corporate Services Division of Cassidy Turley where he coordinated hundreds of franchisee and corporate turn-key projects for several national retailers and commercial enterprises. In that role he worked closely with contractors and subcontractors, value engineering ways to meet and exceed budget expectations.

Founded in 1907, Murphy Company is one of the nation’s top mechanical contracting and engineering firms delivering innovative solutions to the commercial, industrial and institutional markets. The firm employs more than 1,000 people nationwide. For more information, visit

David Warning Promoted to Executive Vice President-Chief Credit Officer at Midwest BankCentre

David Warning

David B. Warning, formerly regional president of Midwest BankCentre based at its Chesterfield branch, has been promoted to executive vice president-chief credit officer for the locally owned community bank. Warning leads the bank’s credit culture for all significant lending units, including commercial, consumer, mortgage and wealth management. His oversight ensures the bank’s asset quality objectives are met while supporting growth and diversification of the bank’s loan portfolio. Warning joined Midwest BankCentre bank in 2014. He has more than 30 years of commercial lending experience.

Warning has a bachelor’s degree in business administration from Southern Illinois University-Edwardsville. He served on the St. Louis Regional Chamber board of directors and the West County YMCA board. He was formerly president of the Chesterfield Chamber of Commerce. Warning is a longtime volunteer with Habitat for Humanity.

Midwest BankCentre, a mainstay of St. Louis community banking since 1906, employs a staff of about 280 working at 19 bank locations in the City of St. Louis and St. Louis,

M Property Services Hires Dr. Ramona Tumblin-Rucker as Director of Design/Build & Construction Management

Dr. Ramona Tumblin-Rucker

M Property Services (MPS) proudly announces the hiring of Dr. Ramona Tumblin-Rucker, PEng, MBA, MPM, CHC, as Director of Design/Build & Construction Management.

In her new position, Tumblin-Rucker will provide oversight to evaluate and monitor complete design/build project bids, construction schedules, proformas, budgets and project activities. She will also manage project implementation, including resource allocation, quality control, change order processing and risk analysis, as well as conduct field inspections and monitor building program success.

She has more than 30 years of project management experience, having previously served as Project Manager for McCarthy Building Companies and Legacy Building Group where she successfully managed projects of various sizes and levels of complexity in the healthcare, academic and corporate industries.

Tumblin-Rucker has a Bachelor of Science in Petroleum Engineering from Missouri University of Science and Technology in Rolla, MO; MBA in Management from Oklahoma City University in Oklahoma City, OK; Master of Project Management from Keller Graduate School of Management in St. Louis, MO and Doctor of Management from Webster University in Webster Groves, MO.

Industry organizations she is a member of include: National Society of Black Engineers, Associated General Contractors of St. Louis, St. Louis Construction Forum, St. Louis Construction Consumers Council, Missouri Society for Healthcare Engineering, American Society for Healthcare Engineering, and American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers. 

Founded in 1990, M Property Services, LLC (MPS) is a full-service real estate development, property management and brokerage firm based in O’Fallon, MO. For more information about M Property Services, visit or call 636-561-9300.

Mike Trobaugh Achieves Certified Healthcare Constructor Designation

Mike Trobaugh

ASHE Certified Team Members Continue to Grow at Holland Construction Services 

Mike Marchal, president of Holland Construction Services (Holland), is pleased to announce that Mike Trobaugh, Project Superintendent, has earned the designation of Certified Healthcare Constructor (CHC) by the American Hospital Association (AHA).

The CHC is a national credential that distinguishes an individual as being among an elite group of 900 healthcare construction professionals in the nation.  The CHC certification program is designed to provide an objective and rigorous assessment of broad-based knowledge in healthcare construction. An individual must satisfy eligibility requirements that incorporate a blend of education and associated healthcare-specific professional experience, agree to adhere to the professional standard of conduct, and pass the CHC certification exam.

Mike is the second Holland employee to achieve CHC certification. In addition, six Holland employees have received a Health Care Construction (HCC) Certificate from the American Society for Healthcare Engineering (ASHE, a membership group of the AHA).  The ASHE HCC Certificate shows these employees have been trained to work in the health care construction environment.

Holland has built a strong reputation in the healthcare market completing over 50 projects throughout southern Illinois and the St. Louis metro area, including projects for BJC HealthCare, Memorial Hospital, HSHS St. Elizabeth’s Hospital, Southern Illinois Healthcare Foundation, and SSM Health, as well as many oncology care providers and medical office buildings for physician’s groups. 

Holland Construction Services is a full-service construction management, general contracting, and design/build firm based in Swansea, Ill., guided by the principle of providing our clients the best possible building experience on every project. For more information, visit Holland’s website at

May 10, 2019

S. M. Wilson Hires Four

S.M. Wilson & Co. has hired Michele Lord as Business Development Director, Matt Niemeyer as Virtual Design and Construction Manager, Tim Fischer as Estimator and Gwen Arenberg as Project Engineer.

Michele Lord

Lord joins S. M. Wilson’s Business Development team with 20 years of experience in marketing, project management and business development with companies including Hellmuth, Obata+Kassabaum, BJC Healthcare and BSA LifeStructures. She holds a B.A. in Political Science with a Master’s in Higher Education. Lord will be the business development lead for S. M. Wilson’s healthcare market sector. She will also assist with higher education as well as acquiring new clients, maintaining existing relationships and elevating S. M. Wilson within the community.

Matt Niemeyer

Niemeyer is a licensed architect with experience as a Project Architect, Project Manager and BIM/VDC Manager. He will be responsible for developing and coordinating the firm’s virtual design and construction division. Niemeyer holds a B.S. in Architectural Studies from the University of Illinois with 22 years of experience.

Tim Fischer

Fischer will be responsible for assembling cost estimates and developing constructability reviews and value engineering studies for construction projects. He holds a B.S. in Information Technology/Multimedia and Visual Communications and has 15 years experience estimating fabrication and manufacturing, including build-out for corporate, educational and public facilities.

Gwen Arenberg

Arenberg is a licensed architect. She joins S. M. Wilson as a Project Engineer and will be responsible for helping establish procedures with the design professionals, consultants and Owner of projects for information flow, approvals meetings and reporting. She will also track shop drawings, submittals, material deliveries and RFIs through the duration of projects.

S. M. Wilson is a full-service construction management, design/build and general contracting firm with headquarters in St. Louis. For more information, visit

Jeffrey Krus Joins Kwame Building Group as Project Engineer

Jeffrey Krus

Jeffrey Krus, of Byrnes Mill, Missouri, has joined Kwame Building Group, Inc. (KWAME) as project engineer. Krus’ responsibilities include project budgeting and estimating, contractor and subcontractor communications, site management and responding to RFI’s and submittals.

Krus has three years of industry experience as field project engineer. He earned a bachelor’s degree in Construction Management from Southern Illinois State University – Edwardsville.

Kwame Building Group, Inc. (KWAME) is one of the nation’s top pure construction management firms, dedicating 100 percent of its resources to project management services. For more information, visit or call (314) 862-5344.

Kirby-Smith Machinery Hires David Kellerstrass as General Manager, Product Support Sales

David Kellerstrass

Kirby-Smith Machinery, Inc. (KSM) announced David Kellerstrass as General Manager, Product Support Sales. Kellerstrass will manage product support sales operations, which includes oversight of 16 product support sales representatives for the company. He will focus on growing parts and service opportunities for KSM, partnering with industry suppliers and engaging KSM’s customer base to ensure their satisfaction. Kellerstrass will work out of the Dallas office.

Kellerstrass has over a decade of experience in Komatsu dealership operations, joining KSM after a diverse 11-year career in sales and management at Power Motive Corporation in Colorado. In that position, he served in roles as a territory salesmen, rental operations and fleet general manager, and most recently as a corporate product support sales manager.

Kirby-Smith Machinery, Inc. was established in 1983 and is recognized as one of the premiere new and used heavy construction equipment and crane dealers in the country. For more information about Kirby-Smith Machinery, call 888-861-0219 or visit

May 3, 2019

Tom Colyer joins Wiegmann Associates as Project Designer 

Tom Colyer

Tom Colyer of St. Charles, MO has joined Wiegmann Associates as a project designer. Colyer is responsible for drafting and drawing 3D models of HVAC systems for various Wiegmann Associates projects. Colyer has eight years of construction industry experience as a designer. He holds an associate’s degree in Drafting and Design from ITT Technical Institute.

Wiegmann Associates is a St. Louis-based mechanical contractor and a national leader in design/build HVAC projects. For more information, visit or call (636) 940-1056.

Zig Piwowarski rejoins LANDCO Construction as Project Executive

Zig Piwowarski

Zig Piwowarski has rejoined LANDCO Construction as a project executive.  His role is to ensure the successful delivery of multiple projects, while helping to build the client base and contribute to the strategic direction of the firm. He brings over 20 years of experience in the local construction industry, with a focus on client relations.

Piwowarski originally joined LANDCO as a project manager and estimator back in 2002, after beginning his career as a union carpenter in the field. He spent ten years at Cushman & Wakefield/Cassidy Turley/Colliers as a senior manager in project and development services. He then served as vice president in project and development services in the St. Louis region for Jones Lang LaSalle, where he managed all phases of multiple projects, representing landlords and tenants, while developing client relationships.

He rejoins LANDCO during the transition into new ownership and leadership under its president, Linda Bernhard, who has been with LANDCO since its inception.  “We are extremely excited that Zig has chosen to rejoin our team. He is a genuine leader, and his industry knowledge and exceptional traits are a welcome addition to our organization,” said Bernhard.

St. Louis-based LANDCO Construction provides preconstruction, construction management and interior construction services. With the competitive advantage of strong partnerships in the design industry, LANDCO’s experienced and dedicated in-house team has delivered quality construction projects on time and within budget since 2001. 

LaTonya Jackson Promoted to Community Partnership Business Development Officer at Midwest BankCentre

LaTonya Jackson

LaTonya Jackson, formerly leader of the Midwest BankCentre Friendly Temple branch, has been promoted to community partnership business development officer. The announcement was made by Erin Erhart, executive vice president of fee services and consumer banking.

Jackson focuses on building and expanding bank relationships with Midwest BankCentre’s community partners, faith-based institutions and nonprofit organizations. She will develop capacity and opportunities to expand bank services to clients in these market segments. Now in her fifth year of banking, Jackson joined the bank in mid-2016 and was previously the community development specialist for Electro Savings Credit Union.

Jackson has a bachelor’s degree in psychology from Benedictine College and a master’s in business administration degree from Fontbonne University. She serves on the board of Better Family Life, Inc., Young Biz Kidz and the Hamiliton Heights Neighborhood Association. She chairs the youth committee for the St. Louis Regional Unbanked Taskforce and is the St. Louis regional co-chair for the Money Smart Planning Committee.

April 26, 2019

Color Art Promotes Vice President and Hires New Director

Local solutions provider continues growth in Midwest 

Jennifer Graham

Color Art, St. Louis’ largest interior solutions provider, is pleased to announce the promotion of long-time employee Jennifer Graham from Vice President of Workplace Strategies to Executive Vice President of Workplace Strategies and Design. Color Art also added Laura Kirk as its new Director of Architectural Solutions. Color Art is the largest commercial interiors solutions provider in the Midwest and has been family and employee-owned for more than 70 years.

The Workplace Strategies and Design team guides clients through discussions or workshops to uncover their business objectives and creates spaces that align with those goals. Graham moved from managing a small team of three to overseeing all design operations. She received her degree in interior design at Southern Illinois University – Carbondale and finetuned her AutoCAD skills at a metal manufacturer upon graduation. Graham became one of the first on-site Facilities Planners for Edward Jones and then held various roles and leadership opportunities at Knoll Textiles and Herman Miller.

Laura Kirk

Color Art has additionally hired Laura Kirk as the new Director of Architectural Solutions. By integrating architectural products, technology products, and furniture solutions, Color Art creates workplaces that enhance performance, inspire engagement and promote wellbeing. The Architectural Solutions team draws on research and experience, in partnership with clients, to elevate their interior environments. Kirk is a life-long St. Louisan with both her bachelor’s and master’s degrees in business from Fontbonne University. Working in business development for the past 10 years, Kirk built business for both Total Source and HumanScale in the St. Louis market by calling on A&D firms and commercial furniture dealerships.

“I thought it was the perfect timing. I love what Color Art has been doing in the market, so it was just an easy and natural next step,” said Kirk when Executive Vice President, Todd Nixon, asked her to join the team.

The largest commercial interiors solutions provider in the Midwest, Color Art serves clients in 30 states as well as internationally. For more than 70 years, its employees have earned a reputation synonymous with excellence, service, and integrity. As one of the nation’s leading authorized Steelcase dealers, Color Art prides itself on the knowledge it brings to every relationship and offers customers insight, advice, and partnership to help them create the best places for people to do their best work. For more information visit

David Coleman Joins HOK as Regional Leader of Science + Technology in St. Louis 

David Coleman

David Coleman, AIA, LEED AP BD+C, has joined HOK as a regional leader for the firm’s Science + Technology practice. He brings nearly 25 years of experience designing college and university projects, with a specialty in strategic facility planning, programming and conceptual design.

As a regional leader, Coleman will be responsible for leading Science + Technology projects in the region, guiding project pursuits and growing the practice. He will collaborate closely with current and future clients to deliver high-quality projects that shape campuses.

Coleman is a frequent speaker on trends impacting the design of higher education facilities at conferences including SCUP, APPA. NACUBO and Tradeline and has contributed articles to industry publications on topics such as leveraging technology in design to educate next-generation healthcare professionals.

Coleman is a graduate of Washington University in St. Louis with a Master of Architecture and the University of Pennsylvania with a Bachelor of Arts. He is active in industry and civic organizations and is an alumnus of Leadership St. Louis.

With offices around the globe, HOK designs buildings and spaces that respond to the needs of people and the environment. HOK designers are rooted in technical excellence, driven by imagination and focused on a solitary goal: to deliver solutions that inspire clients and communities.

Guarantee Electrical Company Hires New Market Development Manager

Nick Arb

Guarantee Electrical Company (Guarantee) recently announced the hiring of a new Market Development Manager.  Nick Arb has joined Guarantee Electrical as the Market Development Manager for its offices in Missouri, Illinois, Colorado and California. Nick will be responsible for driving the company’s marketing and business development strategies to ensure the best representation of the company’s reputation, brand, culture and standards of service to its clients. Nick brings 10 years of experience in the electrical and construction industry, most recently as the Director of Business Development for Mid America Metals.

Nick will report to Don Brown – Vice President of Business Development, allowing him to capitalize on Guarantee’s long history of success and deep relationships in the construction industry.

Prior to joining Guarantee, Nick was the Director of Business Development for Mid America Metals where he successfully led the national sales program, corporate marketing, and business development initiatives which also included key account relationships, strategic partnerships and large project coordination.   Additionally he has worked at Frost Supply as an Energy Solutions & Lighting Specialist and Marketing Manager.

According to Don Brown, “We are very excited to have Nick join the Guarantee Electrical team.  His integrated experience in both Marketing and Business Development, coupled with his energy and passion for client relationship development will be a benefit to Guarantee Electrical clients and employees.”

A graduate of St. Louis University High, Nick also has his Bachelor of Science in Commerce from Santa Clara University.

Founded in 1902, St. Louis based Guarantee Electrical is consistently ranked among the largest electrical contractors in the United States. Its operations include branch offices in Granite City, IL. and Denver, CO, plus ongoing operations in California.   The company provides full-scope electrical contracting, including preconstruction, construction, engineering and design, design-build, design-assist, value engineering, procurement, electrical and communications systems, service and preventive maintenance.  To learn more, visit

April 19, 2019

Tarlton Promotes Korte to Human Resources Manager

Denise Korte

Tarlton Corp., a St. Louis-based general contracting and construction management firm, promoted Denise Korte to human resources manager. Korte has more than 17 years of experience in the human resources industry. She is a certified Professional in Human Resources and Society for Human Resources Certified Professional with expertise in implementing policies and strategies, serving as a point of contact for staff and stakeholders and providing multiple human resources services and functions.

Korte joined Tarlton in 2017. She previously served as human resources manager at Progressive Medical Inc., where she managed full-cycle recruiting for corporate and sales positions, as well as conducted performance reviews and oversight of employee benefits. Korte also previously served as human resources manager at Paric Corp.

Korte holds a Bachelor of Science degree in organizational leadership from Greenville University in Greenville, Ill.

Jeremy Wood Joins Castle Contracting as Project Manager/Estimator

Jeremy Wood

Castle Contracting has hired Jeremy Wood as project manager/estimator. In this position, he pursues project opportunities, manages project estimating activities and oversees the day-to-day operation of projects within Castle’s MEP Civil and Utilities market.

Prior to joining Castle, Wood served as project manager/estimator at Lawlor Corporation and project engineer at KAI Design & Build. His project management and estimating experience encompasses a wide range of institutional and commercial building projects, including medical clinics, multi-story hospitals, municipal buildings and higher-education facilities.

“Jeremy is a collaborative, detail‐oriented project manager with an exceptional record of success in delivering projects on time and on budget,” said Michael Pranger, vice president of operations, Castle Contracting. “Our clients will benefit from his expertise and commitment to achieving results.”

Wood earned a bachelor’s degree in industrial technology, construction management and design from Southeast Missouri State University in Cape Girardeau. He and his family live in Warrenton, Mo.

Jasminn Jones joins Kwame Building Group as Project Engineer

Jasminn Jones

Jasminn Jones of Florissant, MO has joined Kwame Building Group, Inc. (KWAME) as project engineer. She is responsible for managing submittals on the firm’s $450 million SSM St. Louis University Hospital project. She also ensures contract compliance, prepares project status reports and assists project management personnel.

Jones brings five years of experience in the construction industry, including an internship with KWAME. She holds a bachelor’s degree in Civil Engineering from Alabama A&M University and was a member of the Eta Kappa Tau Engineering and Technology Fraternity, Inc.

Kwame Building Group, Inc. (KWAME) is one of the nation’s top pure construction management firms, dedicating 100 percent of its resources to project management services. For more information, visit or call (314) 862-5344.

Key Employees Take Ownership Positions in Remiger Design

in Companies/News

Firm looks toward the future with buy in from Principal Architect and CFO

Vern Remiger, president of Remiger Design, announced that Denny Crain and Mike Favazza Jr. have taken an ownership position in the architectural, planning and interior design firm.

“Denny and Mike have been key leaders at our firm,” Remiger noted. “This enables us to move forward with our growth plans while ensuring that we have capable leadership to guide our firm in the coming years.”

Crain has been with Remiger Design since April 2014, starting as a project leader. He became a licensed architect in January 2016. He was promoted to principal in January 2018. With 15 years of experience, his primary responsibilities range across all design and construction phases of projects for the firm’s clients. Additionally, he develops the firm’s business while focusing on several commercial property sectors.

Favazza was named CFO of Remiger Design last January, after having served as the company’s outside CPA for three years. Mike oversees the firm’s initiatives to improve profitability and efficiencies in its business processes. His experience includes more than 16 years of both public and private accounting, with an emphasis on helping small businesses manage their finances and growth.

“While I will remain active as the majority shareholder, this positions our firm for the future,” Remiger said. “I am confident in their abilities to eventually take over the firm.”

Remiger Design is a St. Louis-based planning, architecture and interior design firm specializing in the planning and design of multiple project types and scale. The firm was founded in 2010 by Vern Remiger, an industry veteran with more than 35 years of experience in architecture, interior design, planning and facilities management.

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