People On The Move In The Local Construction Industry


Lawrence Group Announces 2023 Staff Promotions

St. Louis-based planning and design firm Lawrence Group proudly announces the following 2023 employee promotions:

Brent Fasbinder

ASSOCIATE PRINCIPALBrent Fasbinder, RA – Fasbinder joined Lawrence Group in 1993. He is a project manager for Lawrence Group’s healthcare studio and is currently working on the firm’s Health First Merritt Island Wellness Village project in Florida.

Michael Flynn

Michael Flynn, RA, NCARB – Flynn is an architect in Lawrence Group’s education studio. With more than 15 years of experience with the firm, Flynn contributes a diverse skill set to the firm’s work on higher education campuses through his experience with multiple projects at Southeast Missouri State University.


Katie Alderson

Katie Alderson, NCIDQ – Alderson joined Lawrence Group in 2013 and has 13 years of experience as an interior designer. At Lawrence Group, Alderson specializes in multi-family and senior living projects.

Dan DeWeese

Dan DeWeese, NCARB, LEED® Green Associate – DeWeese is a key member of Lawrence Group’s healthcare practice. His responsibilities include leading projects from concept planning to construction execution and integrating cohesive teams for design and construction. He is passionate about health and wellness design as well as living a healthy, active lifestyle outside of the workplace.

Cole Hoffarth

Cole Hoffarth, AIA, NCARB – Hoffarth brings more than 10 years of design and project management experience in adaptive reuse and renovation projects for Lawrence Group’s education, municipal and senior living clients.

Michael Lombardo

Michael Lombardo – Lombardo joined Lawrence Group in 2015 as a design professional. In his eight years at Lawrence Group, his work has included managing projects for national brands such as H&R Block, Edward Jones and Bach to Rock.

Kelly Paige

Kelly Paige, NCIDQ, WELL AP, LEED GA, Fitwel Ambassador – Paige joined Lawrence Group in 2013 as an interior designer. Her experience includes a variety of markets such as workplace, retail, and healthcare. Focusing on workplace design, she has provided designs for corporate office projects including office renovations, additions, and national rollouts for several brands including H&R Block, Scottrade and Panera Bread.

Dana Peck

Dana Peck, NCIDQ – Peck has more than ten years of interior design experience including corporate, hospitality, multifamily, senior living and education projects. Recently, Peck helped design restaurant concepts as a part of Union Station’s repositioning for the Soda Fountain, Train Shed and 1894 Cafe.


Morgan Bargetzi

Morgan Bargetzi – Bargetzi joined Lawrence Group in 2018 as a designer. Her experience includes working with national commercial retail clients such as Edward Jones, H&R Block, Ace Cash Express and

Independent Pet Partners.

Kalia Choi

Kalia Choi – Choi joined Lawrence Group in 2018 as a design professional, expanding her knowledge of interior architecture as related to experiential design. A member of Lawrence Group’s New York office, Choi has been instrumental in national rollouts for brands including Tend, Blue Bottle and Adore Me.

Larissa Hudson

Larissa Hudson, LEED Green Associate – Hudson joined Lawrence Group in 2021 and brings experience across several markets including retail, healthcare, multifamily housing, recreation and hospitality.

Harrison Naff

Harrison Naff – Naff joined Lawrence Group in 2021 with more than five years of design experience in markets such as retail, education, athletic facilities, entertainment, banking/finance and residential. At Lawrence Group, Naff is a member of the Panera Bread project team.

Nicole Schlote

Nicole Schlote – Schlote is an interior design professional who joined Lawrence Group in 2018. Since joining the firm, Nicole has helped design multiple America’s Best Contacts locations across the country.


James Strupp

James Strupp – Strupp has been with Lawrence Group for ten years, joining in 2013 after working 25 years with Anheuser-Busch. Strupp brings experience in auditing, billing and financial/operational accounting. In his new role, he is responsible for project accounting setup and invoicing for Lawrence Group, working daily with the firm’s project managers.      

O’Toole Design Enhances Practice with Promotions, New Hire

O’Toole Design, one of the largest interior design firms in the St. Louis region, recently promoted two integral team members and hired a new interior designer in alignment with the firm’s strategic plan.

Debbie Stamer

Debbie Stamer was promoted from Senior Interior Designer II/Project Manager to Principal, Director of Interior Design. With over 30 years of innovative design experience and 25 years at O’Toole, Stamer is a key component to O’Toole’s success and long-term relationships with its clients. She has worked on a wide variety of dynamic interior environments, including corporate, hospitality, recreation and entertainment. Stamer brings a strategic and artistic approach to every project, driven by her ability, passion and intuitive design insight. Focusing on creative solutions for clients, her collaborative spirit and thoughtful approach allow her to act as an effective mentor for others. Stamer is Codes and Barrier Free Design Certified and is involved in the Metro East Professional Women’s Association (MEPW), St. Louis Children’s Hospital KIDstruction Week and Coat-a-Kid, Inc. St. Louis.

Rachel Townsend

Rachel Townsend was promoted from Interior Designer II to Interior Designer II/Interiors BIM Coordinator. Townsend began her career with O’Toole six years ago and has been instrumental in improving document quality, technological innovations and design presentations for the firm. In her new role as BIM Coordinator, she will work with the entire design team and the BIM Manager to develop and manage drawing and presentation standards. With a keen eye for design and development, Townsend has been instrumental in many corporate, recreational and entertainment projects.

Stamer and Townsend have been key team members on many high-profile O’Toole projects like Armory STL, The Factory at The District, The Hub at The District, several Jewish Community Centers throughout the U.S. and Goya’s Corporate Headquarters.

“I’m beyond excited to announce Debbie and Rachel’s promotions,” said Michelle O’Toole, President, O’Toole Design. “Debbie is a natural leader with a fearlessly positive attitude that curates new design inspiration from every source imaginable. Rachel is a natural innovator with a drive to learn and grow in everything she does. These promotions reflect their incredible value to the O’Toole team, and I am proud of the fantastic work and character they showcase every day.”

Eleanore Burwell

As a new hire, Eleanore Burwell, Interior Designer I, joined O’Toole as a recent graduate of Maryville University with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Interior Design. She served as an intern with O’Toole in 2022 and brings an impressive design resume to the firm, receiving the Design and Visual Art Award and the Barat Scholarship from Maryville. Burwell is skilled in a wide variety of design programs and is currently pursuing her WELL Certification.

“Eleanore is a fantastic addition to our talented team of designers,” O’Toole said. “Her work ethic, attention to detail, eye for color and design, and her proficiency with technology made it an easy decision to ask her to join our team full-time. She has been a tremendous help already with several projects like the local Staybridge Hotel, Alberici’s office renovation and design ideas for The Magic House. The entire team is thrilled to have her on board.”

KAI Promotes Derwin Broughton to Vice President

Derwin Broughton

KAI proudly announces the promotion of Derwin Broughton, AIA, NOMA, NCARB, WELL AP to Vice President.

Broughton is a Vice President and Principal for KAI where he is accountable for business development and client relations for each of the firm’s business units: Design, Engineering, Build, and 360 Construction Services. Prior to taking on this role, he served as the Deputy Director of Architecture managing KAI’s architecture divisions in Dallas-Fort Worth and San Antonio, Texas.

“For more than two decades, Broughton has focused on outcome-based architecture and transforming communities through design solutions that integrate the unique voices of project stakeholders. His work transcends multiple markets, including municipal, civic, K-12, higher education, healthcare and transit,” said KAI President Darren L. James, FAIA. “With each project, he seeks to raise awareness for the underserved, bringing equitable design and opportunities to those who are often overlooked.”

Broughton is a citizen architect and community advocate who actively provides leadership on civic boards and with community and architectural organizations to advocate for the betterment of society. He has served on numerous boards and commissions in several North Texas municipalities. These roles have spanned from serving as a committee member to leading as the Vice President of Economic Development and chairing the Board of Adjustments. Derwin’s community involvement transcends demographics, boundaries and factions to include leadership and board positions for a variety of non-profits.

“KAI is proactively assembling the next generation of company leaders and building that leadership team takes talent, time, and proven performance. Derwin’s promotion acknowledges the consistent client, project, and firm leadership he has routinely shown for two decades,” said KAI Managing Partner Brad Simmons, FAIA. “His community-based leadership approach is well aligned with KAI’s mission of Transforming Communities, and he embodies the very best characteristics of a model citizen-architect. This new role firmly establishes Derwin in a significant leadership position for the company’s next growth evolution.”

Professionally, Broughton has served in various leadership roles with AIA Dallas including chairing the Young Architects Forum and serving on its board as Director of Advocacy. His commitment to the advancement of the profession and strategic priorities of the Texas Society of Architects afforded him the privilege of serving as Vice President of Advocacy and current President-elect. Derwin is also a past president of the Dallas Chapter of the National Organization of Minority Architects (NOMA).

Derwin was recognized nationally with the AIA Young Architects Award and locally as a Dallas Business Journal 40 Under 40 and through the Texas and Louisiana Engineering News-Record’s 20 Under 40 program for his work in the profession and community. He is a published author and sought-after speaker, regularly contributing to articles in industry publications such as Learning By Design magazine and speaking about architecture’s role in community advocacy and transformation.

A native of South Carolina and graduate of Clemson University, he is married to his college sweetheart Michele. They have two children and reside in Duncanville, Texas.

August 25. 2023

IWR North America Welcomes Billy Marks as Prefabrication Manager

Billy Marks

IWR North America is pleased to announce and welcome Billy Marks as Prefabrication Manager. With an impressive career spanning over 25 years in the construction industry, Billy brings a wealth of expertise and a passion for finding innovative and efficient ways to deliver exceptional results.

Throughout his career, Billy has held various key roles, including Prefabrication Manager, Chief Estimator, and Project Manager. He has established himself as a trusted building enclosure professional with a special focus on prefabrication.

“IWR North America is excited to welcome Billy Marks as our new Prefabrication Manager,” said Eric Youngblood, Vice President of IWR North America. “His exceptional track record and passion for pushing the boundaries of construction align perfectly with our commitment to being a true building enclosure partner for our clients. Billy’s expertise is sure to play a pivotal role in further strengthening our position as a building enclosure leader locally and nation-wide.”

Billy has been involved in many notable projects throughout his career, both with IWR North America and in his past roles. Some notable projects include the Covidien Pilot Plant in Webster Groves, Mo., the expansion of the University of Missouri Memorial East side football stadium in Columbia, Mo., and the University of Florida Malachowsky Data Center in Gainesville, Fla. These projects have been acknowledged within the industry with national awards and best-in-class recognitions.

Known for his problem-solving skills and collaborative approach, Billy is dedicated to helping his team succeed and building strong relationships with clients and project partners. As he anticipates collaborating on world-class projects, his passion for prefabrication and commitment to innovative methods align with IWR North America’s focus on delivering cutting-edge building enclosure solutions.

Bringing talented employees like Billy into the fold reaffirms IWR North America’s unwavering dedication to providing value-added solutions and exceeding client expectations. We look forward to the positive impact he will undoubtedly have on our existing and future projects.

Malachi Rein, Director of Building Energy Exchange St. Louis, Named Smart Buildings Center’s 2023 Building Operator of the Year

Malachi Rein

Malachi Rein, Director of the Building Energy Exchange St. Louis (BE-Ex STL), has been named the 2023 Building Operator of the Year by the Smart Buildings Center (SBC) and the Building Operator Certification (BOC) program. The award recognizes people working to improve the energy efficiency of their work environment using skills they learned in the organization’s Building Operator Certification (BOC) program. Part of a national network of regional resource hubs, BE-Ex STL provides programs and resources to support the large-scale improvement of the St. Louis region’s building stock. As the second leader of BE-Ex STL, Rein is paving the path for the organization’s work.

“Malachi believes in the investment in building operators who instrumentally support society and have great potential to be needed agents of positive change in their everyday work and advocates for more people to have the opportunity to attend BOC training,” said the BOC of Rein in a statement.

Building Operator Certification (BOC) is professional development training for operations and maintenance staff working in public, commercial and institutional buildings. The training offers a series of courses on the energy and resource-efficient operation of buildings. Malachi is working with utility company Spire to promote and increase participation in upcoming classes .

In his role at BE-EX STL Rein develops and delivers educational programs, facilitates industry connections, advises stakeholders on regulation and financing and helps the building and design community acquire advanced skills. Through this work Rein has become a respected leader in conversations about energy efficiency, workforce development, building performance standards, and more. His leadership in this area has helped elevate the role of St. Louis as an example to other cities.

August 18, 2023

Western Specialty Contractors Hires Abi Jackson as Sales/Project Manager at KC Sheet Metal Division

Abi Jackson

Western Specialty Contractors announces the hiring of Abi Jackson as Sales/Project Manager at its KC Sheet Metal Division in Kansas City, KS.

In her new position, Jackson works to fulfill the division’s marketing and sales goals, develop project schedules, ensure quality work on projects, and develop estimates for proposals.

Western’s Sheet Metal Division has over 20 years of experience and is fully equipped to fabricate complex metal projects in a wide variety of sheet metal materials, including metal wall panel systems; metal roofing systems; gutters, downspouts, scuppers and expansion gaps; and custom metal fabrications and detailing.

Prior to Western, Jackson worked five years in Sales/Project Management for Commercial Openings Inc. in North Kansas City.

In her spare time, she enjoys smoking meat on the weekends and loves the opportunity to cook for others. She is married with one daughter. Along with coaching her daughter’s soccer, t-ball and flag football teams, she enjoys philanthropy and helping others. She is also a member of the Kansas City North Elks Lodge.            

Kwame Building Group Adds Three Team Members

L to R: Junior Theolus, Chris Draper, Patrick Jeep
Photos courtesy of F. D. Finch Photography

Kwame Building Group (KWAME) has added three new team members: Junior Theolus as Project Administrator and Diversity Monitor, Patrick Jeep as Project Controls Scheduler and Chris Draper as Project Engineer and Construction Manager.

In his role as Project Administrator and Diversity Monitor, Theolus’ responsibilities include tracking contract changes, submittals and RFIs, creating presentations, managing, and maintaining project document control systems and processing invoices for several projects such as the St. Louis Convention Center and St. Louis Community College. In addition, Theolus is responsible for monitoring, tracking, and reporting the active involvement of Minority, Women, and/or Emerging Small Business (MWESB) firms to ensure project compliance for the Metropolitan St. Louis Sewer District. Theolus holds a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration with a focus on Supply Chain Management & International Business from University of Missouri-St. Louis.

Draper brings more than seven years of experience in commercial construction. He is currently working on renovation projects for McDonald’s and Harris Stowe State University. Draper holds a Master of Science in Construction Management from NewSchool of Architecture & Design and Bachelor of Graphic Communications from the University of Missouri St. Louis. He has numerous industry certifications including OSHA 10, First Aid CPR AED and A D Lift Truck Forklift, Scaffold and Highway Construction.

As Project Controls Scheduler, Jeep is responsible for overseeing scheduling and coordination on various projects, ensuring efficient resource and manpower allocation and timely completion. He develops and maintains accurate project schedules, tracks progress and mitigates potential issues to ensure successful project delivery. Jeep brings valuable industry experience as a construction field technician. He holds a Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering with a focus in Construction Engineering from Missouri University of Science and Technology and is a certified Engineer in Training (EIT). He has numerous industry certifications including OSHA 10, American Concrete Institute (ACI) Testing and Missouri Department of Transportation (MoDOT) Aggregate Technician.

Poettker Announces Promotions in Preconstruction, Estimating & Project Management 

Poettker Construction Company, one of the nation’s top-performing construction firms, recently promoted six team members to the Preconstruction, Estimating, and Project Management Teams.

In Poettker’s Preconstruction and Estimating department, promotions include Gary Richter to MEPFP Director, Justin Luitjohan to Preconstruction Manager, Justin Dulle to Lead Estimator, and Mike Smith to Senior Estimator.

Gary Richter

Richter joined Poettker in 2021 as Assistant Director of Estimating. He has over 35 years’ experience in operations, electrical engineering, and refrigeration, with management experience in financial, operational and maintenance projects. Richter received his bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering from the University of Illinois. In his new role, Richter will work across multiple departments to strengthen relationships and coordination with Mechanical, Electrical, Plumbing, and Fire Protection trade contractors.

Justin Luitjohan

Luitjohan has over nine years of experience in the Infrastructure, Commercial, Industrial, Distribution, Federal, and Education markets. He joined Poettker in 2016 as a Project Engineer and most recently served in the role of Estimator. Luitjohan received his bachelor’s degree in civil engineering from Southern Illinois University-Edwardsville.

Justin Dulle

Dulle has over 12 years of experience in the Commercial, Industrial, Distribution Center & Warehouse markets. He joined Poettker in 2015 as a Project Engineer and most recently served in the role of Estimator. In addition to leading estimates on complex projects, Dulle will be providing mentorship, oversight, guidance, and training for the estimating team.

Mike Smith

Smith has over 18 years of experience in the Retail, Industrial, Distribution Center & Warehouse markets. Since joining Poettker in 2008, Smith has served in roles as a Project Engineer and Estimator. In his new role, Smith will lead estimates for more complex projects.

Both Dulle and Smith received their bachelor’s degree in construction management from Southern Illinois University-Edwardsville.

Peter Ratermann

For Poettker’s Project Management team, Peter Ratermann was promoted to Senior Project Manager and Nick Stockard was promoted to Senior Project Engineer.

Ratermann has over 11 years of experience in the Commercial, Industrial, Distribution, and Education markets. He joined Poettker in 2016 as a Project Engineer and most recently served in the role of Project Manager. Ratermann received his bachelor’s degree in civil engineering from Southern Illinois University-Edwardsville.

Nicholas Stockard

Stockard joined Poettker in 2022 as a Project Engineer with seven years of experience in electrical systems design and commercial construction. Prior to joining Poettker, Stockard served in the United States Navy providing construction support of operating forces. Stockard is currently pursuing a bachelor’s degree in applied management from Rankin Technical College.

“It has been a remarkable year for growth at Poettker and that is a testament to our team’s commitment to proactive safety, quality, preconstruction, and project management initiatives, whether it be in the field or at the office,” said Ryan Poettker, president of Poettker Construction. “Congratulations to these talented and diverse individuals on their much-deserved promotions.”

IMPACT Strategies Breaks Ground on Hoyleton Youth & Family Services New Residential Campus

IMPACT Strategies broke ground on Hoyleton Youth & Family Services (HYFS) new residential campus at the end of July with special guests, Governor JB Pritzker, Illinois Department of Children and Family Services Director, Marc D. Smith & Hoyleton Youth and Family Services President and CEO, Chris Cox. As the design builder on the project, IMPACT Strategies collaborated with TWM Engineering & Hurford Architects during the planning and design stages.

The new campus will include six Cottages, an administrative building, maintenance building and renovation of the existing gymnasium. The cottages will provide appropriate sensory space, lighting, private bedrooms, and semi-private baths. The new campus, which will cost approximately $16 million, is funded by federal and state grants along with capital campaign support by private and corporate donors.

“With our culture center around a Familial Approach, it is exciting for us to be a part of a project that will help our disadvantaged foster youth acquire fundamental life-skills to hopefully shorten their need for support and prepare them to successfully live independently.” stated Mark Hinrichs, President of IMPACT Strategies.

“Kids come to us with so many different challenges, we work with them at their level and give them the space they need to grow.” said Monte Mister, Director of Therapeutic Residential Care at HYFS. This project will help support the developmental & intellectual needs of children in the foster care system who have been traumatized by life experiences by giving them the appropriate space they need to thrive.

Phase 1 for the Cottages is set for completion January 2024 with Phase 2 for the Administrative Building following in December 2024.

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