People On The Move In The Local Construction Industry

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Oculus Inc. Adds to Ownership Team

Brian Kern

Brian Kern named principal, continues to lead retail team

Oculus Inc., a full-service St. Louis-based architecture and interior design firm, has expanded its leadership team with the promotion of Brian Kern, AIA, LEED AP BD+C, NCARB, to principal. Kern has been with the firm since its inception in 1994 and will continue to hold the position of retail director for the firm’s St. Louis, Dallas and Portland, Ore. offices.

“On the heels of our 25th business anniversary this past year, we couldn’t be more thrilled to celebrate the milestone with the promotion of Brian Kern,” said Ron Reim, executive vice president and co-founder of Oculus Inc. “Brian has truly helped to diversify our client base and expand our book of business outside of the St. Louis area, further positioning us a national firm.”

Last year, Oculus completed renovations on both its St. Louis corporate headquarters and its Dallas office location. The company is currently working on projects across the U.S. for returning clients including Focus Brands, Lion’s Choice, and Department of Veterans Affairs. The addition of new senior living projects in St. Louis and the design of an out-of-ground boutique hotel for Seaside Lodging in Seaside, Ore., have positioned Oculus for continued success in 2020.

“I’m so honored to continue supporting the company that helped me develop my skills and career path,” Kern said. “Now, 25 years later, Oculus is positioned as a premier national architecture and interior design firm, and is strategically growing in the hospitality, senior living and private healthcare markets.”

Kern is a graduate of Kansas State University’s Interior Architecture program and joined the firm in 1994 when Oculus was founded. Kern most notably designed an electronic inventory system for the firm to help track and manage data in drawings. The early adoption and deployment of these technological innovations became the foundation of the company, establishing them to compete for larger corporate work. This includes bringing on BJC HealthCare, The Federal Reserve Bank, Centene Corporation, Anheuser-Busch, St. Louis Community College, and AT&T Wireless Retail as clients.

In 2008, Kern earned his MBA in Business Management from Washington University in St. Louis while working at Oculus and assumed the role as director of retail. Kern’s significant experience in prototype design, brand standards management, national roll out, new builds and retail remodels brought the additions of restaurant clients, such as Nestle, Dominos and BurgerFi.

Oculus Inc. delivers comprehensive Architecture, Interior Design, Planning, and Move Management services with a driving aesthetic to Connect | Shape | Move people, experiences, sensibilities, and spaces. Oculus creates high-performance design that supports change and promotes value for clients in the Commercial, Education, Government, Healthcare, Hospitality, Retail, Restaurant and Workplace industries. Oculus has offices in St. Louis, Dallas and Portland, Ore., is WBE-certified and is regularly cited in top industry rankings for architecture and design. Oculusinc.com.

Spellman Brady & Company Hires Danielle Spellman

Danielle Spellman

Spellman Brady is pleased to announce that Danielle Spellman has joined the firm in the role of Art Associate.  In her role as art associate, Ms. Spellman is responsible for creating unique project-specific artwork concepts; making artwork selections to meet the project budget; completing documents for presentations; and assisting with record keeping of all art processes and project-related documents.

Ms. Spellman attended Maryland Institute College of Art (MICA) in Baltimore, Maryland where she earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Film, Video and Photography and became OSHA 10 Certified.  Prior to joining Spellman Brady, she served as a photo assistant with several photography studios, worked with the Maryland Film Festival, and produced a short film for the Baltimore Student Film Showcase.

Spellman Brady & Company is an award-winning St. Louis–based interior design firm specializing in senior living, healthcare, and higher education environments.  The firm maintains design excellence by delivering comprehensive interior design, furniture, artwork master planning, and procurement services.  As a Certified WBE Business, Spellman Brady & Company has completed more than 6,300 projects in 43 states and abroad since its founding in 1991.  For more information about Spellman Brady & Company, please visit www.spellmanbrady.com.

Kwame Building Group Hires Courtney Prentiss as a Construction Management Intern

Courtney Prentiss

Courtney Prentiss has joined Kwame Building Group, Inc. (KWAME) as a Construction Management Intern. Prentiss’ responsibilities include assisting the construction project manager on project responsibilities, including scheduling, cost estimating and other aspects of project performance.

Prentiss holds a bachelor’s degree in Mathematics from the University of Chicago. She will graduate from Washington University this December with master’s degrees in Architecture and Construction Management.

Prentiss is a student member of the National Organization of Minority Architects and the American Institute of Architectural Students. She was a first-place winner in the PCI Foundation’s 2020 Project Precast student competition and has been elected 2020-2021 Vice President of Finance for the Washington University Graduate Architecture Council.

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. An employee-owned company, KWAME provides estimating, scheduling, project planning, value engineering and other project management services as an independent advocate for owners and developers. KWAME’s public and private sector projects include educational facilities, major airports nationwide, light-rail systems, hospitals, wastewater treatment facilities and government facilities. KWAME is headquartered in St. Louis with division offices in Atlanta, Dallas and Seattle. For more information, visit www.kwamebuildinggroup.com or call (314) 862-5344.

June 5, 2020

Cole & Associates Announces New Shareholder

Eric Morff

Cole & Associates, Inc. announced today that Eric Morff, PE is the newest shareholder of the firm. Morff graduated from University of Dayton with a Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering in 1997. Eric is a registered Professional Engineer and LEED AP BD+C. He started with Cole in 2012 and works on a wide range of projects with clients nationwide.

When asked about how he came to Cole Morff said, “A friend I used to work with kept telling me ‘You should come to Cole, it’s great here!’, and it turns out that he was right, I love working here.”

Kevin E. Riggs, President/CEO of the firm said, “Eric has been instrumental to the growth of the firm. His professionalism, ability to successfully complete projects of any size, and dedication to develop excellent client relationships has made him invaluable to Cole. We are excited to add Eric to our group of shareholders and we know he will contribute greatly to the continued success of the firm.”

Current shareholders include Riggs, Lisa Baker, CFO; Vice Presidents of Regional Operations ‐ John Harshbarger in St. Louis and St. Charles; Jim Roth in Phoenix; and Sandy Stephens in Dallas; Jeremy Roach, Director of Planning and Landscape Architecture; and Survey Managers ‐ Terry Westerman and Tom Reynolds.

Cole & Associates, Inc. is a Missouri Corporation d.b.a. Cole Design Group, Inc. in Texas & Arizona. Cole was founded in 1990 and is a multidiscipline design firm providing civil engineering, surveying, planning, landscape architecture, GIS, and ADA transition planning services nationwide. Headquartered in St. Louis, Mo., Cole has additional offices in St. Charles, Mo., Phoenix, Ariz., and Dallas, Texas.

Wiegmann Associates Promotes Kyle Boschert to Service Manager

Kyle Boschert

Kyle Boschert of St. Charles, has been promoted to service manager at Wiegmann Associates. Boschert will lead Wiegmann Associates’ HVAC service operations. His responsibilities include overseeing service contracts and equipment installations, developing and managing a high-performing team and creating repeat business opportunities. With more than 25 technicians, Wiegmann Associates is one of the largest commercial heating and cooling service providers in the St. Louis region.

Boschert joined Wiegmann Associates as an estimator in 2010 and became a service project manager in 2012. He holds a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration from Lindenwood University.

Wiegmann Associates is a St. Louis-based mechanical contractor and a national leader in design/build HVAC projects. Since 1995, Wiegmann Associates has engineered and installed innovative, energy-saving and cost-efficient HVAC solutions, refrigeration systems and automation controls for clients in a wide range of industries. For more information, visit www.wiegmannassoc.com or call (636) 940-1056.

May 29, 2020

Feeler S. Architects Promotes Cody Henderson

Cody Henerson

FSA, LLC is excited to announce the promotion of Cody Henderson to Director of Science and Education. Since joining our team more than 10 years ago, Cody has developed a detailed talent for laboratory and higher education design, taking the lead on over 150 laboratories and higher education projects. In his new position he will oversee all laboratory and education projects within the firm. Cody will continue to pursue new clients in these sectors, while enhancing existing relationships by always listening first and pushing for sustainable laboratory and education design that exceeds client expectations.

Outside of the office Cody remains highly involved in the community. He is the 2020 American Institute of Architects St. Louis Chapter President, a member of Ranken Technical College’s Architectural Advisory Board, a Habitat for Humanity Construction Leader, and a St. Louis Startup Ambassadors Board Member. In his “free time” he enjoys playing softball, attending Cardinals games and traveling.

Lindenwood University President Dr. John Porter Joins Midwest BankCentre St. Charles Advisory Board

Dr. John R. Porter

Lindenwood University President Dr. John Porter has been elected to the Midwest BankCentre St. Charles Advisory Board. Lindenwood is a four-year institution founded in 1827 with its main residential campus in St. Charles and a network of extension centers offering evening classes and more than 35 online degree programs.

Porter, who earned his doctorate in education at Johns Hopkins University, worked at IBM for 33 years, the last 15 in senior management. Immediately prior to joining Lindenwood University in 2019, he was vice president of services for Gulf Business Machines, a premier IBM business partner, in Dubai. He has served as a member of the board of trustees at Evangel University in Springfield, Mo., where he earned his bachelor’s degree. He graduated with an MBA degree from Washington University in 2011.

Porter serves on the Mercy East and Missouri Colleges Fund board of directors. He is a member of the NCAA-Great Lakes Valley Conference Council of Presidents.

Midwest BankCentre is St. Louis’ second-largest locally owned bank with assets exceeding $2 billion and deposits of $1.4 billion. A mainstay of St. Louis community banking since 1906, the bank employs a staff of about 280 working at 17 bank locations in the City of St. Louis and St. Louis, Jefferson and St. Charles counties. It works to empower people, enable business and energize neighborhoods through the strength of its financial services, including personalized consumer and business banking, business cash management, mortgage lending, home equity loans, financial planning and investments, insurance and digital banking.

The bank is a local leader in the St. Louis Regional Financial Empowerment Coalition (formerly the St. Louis Regional Unbanked Task Force) and its Bank-On Save-Up St. Louis initiative. Since 2001, Midwest BankCentre has consecutively achieved the Bauer Financial 5-Star Superior financial rating each quarter. It has been recognized for its success in bringing mainstream financial services to unbanked and underbanked citizens in the region and other diversity and inclusion contributions with the 2019 Community Commitment Award from the American Bankers Association Foundation and the 2018 National Community Bank Service Award from the Independent Community Bankers of America.

Partney joins BELOMAN Team

Dennis Partney

Bel-O Sales and Service of Belleville is pleased to announce the hire of Dennis Partney as the newest Sheet Metal Manager to team BELOMAN.  As of May 18th, 2020 Partney will be managing the sheet metal division, including estimating HVAC and architectural sheet metal.  After receiving his B.S. in mechanical engineering, he has spent nearly 35 years in the design, estimating, sales and management of sheet metal projects of all types and sizes. Partney will be a great addition to an establish Metro East business.

BELOMAN is a second-generation family owned HVAC, plumbing, indoor air quality and sheet metal business providing quality sales and service to the Metro East for 60 years.  Founded in 1959 by Paul and Leo Lugge with only four employees – today BELOMAN has grown to over 50 employees with a combined 1,249 years of experience.

Bill Smothers Joins Kwame Building Group as Chief Estimator

Bill Smothers

Bill Smothers has joined Kwame Building Group, Inc. as Chief Estimator. His responsibilities include compiling project estimates in support of KWAME’s role as an owner’s representative.

Smothers brings 30 years of industry experience, including with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and The United States Department of Veterans Affairs. He completed the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Construction Management Program and is a member of the American Society of Professional Estimators (ASPE), Society of American Military Engineers (SAME) and the American Society of Cost Engineers (ASPCE). Smothers earned a Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering from Tulane University.

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. An employee-owned company, KWAME provides estimating, scheduling, project planning, value engineering and other project management services as an independent advocate for owners and developers. For more information, visit www.kwamebuildinggroup.com or call (314) 862-5344.

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