February 19, 2016
February 11, 2016
Sundt is committed to hiring a diverse workforce and is constantly looking for chances to employ the industry’s best people and introduce others to exciting opportunities within construction. We are proud to introduce a series in our blog and on social media that provides insights into accomplishments made by our company’s veterans and women while highlighting successful careers and opportunities available in our industry. We’re proud of our diverse culture and thankful for each employee-owner’s contributions. Please follow us on Facebook, LinkedIn andTwitter as we celebrate the things that make Sundt an employer of choice where people thrive in a culture of diversity.
Teri Jones is a Vice President for Sundt and is responsible for Business Development for the California District. She earned her degree in Civil Engineering – Building Design from the University of Southern California and is in her 37th year in the construction industry.
She has held many positions in the industry including Estimator, Project Manager, Project Executive, Owner’s Representative, Inspector, District Manager and CEO of her own construction company.
Teri is a LEED accredited professional, Certified Professional Constructor, certified instructor, guest lecturer at UC Davis, is past president of the Sundt Foundation and currently sits on the Construction Management Advisory Board at UC Berkeley. She has been with Sundt for 16 years.
How did you get involved in construction?
In high school, I registered for some drafting classes and soon realized I had a passion for the built environment. I loved reading 2D blueprints and visualizing 3D buildings that could be constructed from the drawings. So, after receiving my degree in Civil Engineering from USC, I was hired as an estimator at a general contracting firm. After a short stint in estimating, I became a project engineer and then project manager.
What is it about the industry that motivates you every day?
Every day poses different challenges and opportunities to be part of the solution to that challenge. This is a very fast-paced industry and there is never a dull moment. But mostly, it’s the people that motivate me every day. Construction people are very hard-working and I thoroughly enjoy working alongside them every day. Assembling teams made up of clients, designers, engineers and construction personnel to execute projects and work together is a very rewarding part of our business. Interfacing with so many different people from diverse backgrounds with sometimes different goals and personalities can be daunting, but also satisfying when the entire team can point to a completed project and say ‘I helped make that happen!’ Even today, when I drive by a project that I was involved with 20 or 30 years ago, I feel a sense of accomplishment and pride.
Is it getting more common to see women on jobsites?
Yes, it is much more common today than when I started in the industry in 1979. You rarely saw females on the jobsites back then and some companies even had policies against allowing females to work on site. Today, you seldom see a jobsite without females. They are present in roles such as Owner Representative, Inspector, Project Engineer, Project Manager and Project Superintendent.
Why work at Sundt?
Sundt offers so many advantages as an employer, not found at many of our competitors. Since we are an ESOP, you become an owner of the company. We are diverse in our sectors: Industrial, Transportation and Building, which gives you the opportunity to cross-train and experience different facets of the industry. We also have an excellent training program that will assist you in continuing your education and developing skills that will allow you to advance your career.
You and others have proven that women can move up in the construction industry. How much room for advancement is there for Sundt’s female employees?
The opportunities for advancement at Sundt for all employees is unlimited. First and foremost, employees need to focus on doing an excellent job at whatever their current assignment is. Secondly, learn as much as you can about the business of construction, network, cross-train, develop diverse skills and fine-tune those people skills. You never know when an opportunity for advancement will present itself and you need to be ready to act. Most technical skills can be learned, but people skills is the key to success in this business if you want to advance.
How much of a priority do you see Sundt placing on hiring women?
Sundt is very focused on hiring women and it’s a key part of the Strategic Plan going forward. At Sundt, it’s not just about achieving a specific number or percentage. It’s more about doing the right thing and hiring qualified candidates to fill positions and develop a more diversified workforce.
What would you say to female college students who are considering futures in construction and why should they consider Sundt?
I would say ‘Go for it!’ if you like to work hard, have fun and have a passion for the industry.
September 30, 2015
Kids Excel El Paso, one of the grant recipients in the first quarter of Fiscal Year 2016, uses dance to teach students how to work hard, strive for their personal best and never give up.
Sundt’s employee-owners and company have a long-standing tradition of caring about their communities. It’s one of the reasons the Sundt Foundation was formed in 1999.
That tradition of giving back was going strong in the first quarter of Fiscal Year 2016, when the Foundation awarded 47 grants totaling $111,921.88. The money was raised through donations by employee-owners and matching contributions by the company.
Over its lifetime, the Sundt Foundation has given more than $7 million in grants to non-profits that help disadvantaged adults and children. Most of that support went to organizations in Arizona, California and Texas.
July 29, 2015
Photo of Kings County Courthouse by Sheriff David Robinson.
By the end of the year, Kings County in California will have a modern new courthouse, joining our company’s growing list of justice facilities constructed in the state.
Kings County’s 144,600-square-foot building in Hanford includes 10 courtrooms, with another two courtroom spaces shelled out for future growth, plus a jury assembly room, subterranean parking structure and an underground tunnel that connects to the nearby county jail. Our team of courthouse construction experts is on track to complete the work in December after breaking ground in late 2013.
Sundt has five courthouses it has either built or is working on, including:
Richard E. Arnason Justice Center is an award-winning 73,500-square-foot courthouse in Pittsburg that includes seven courtrooms, judges’ chambers, administrative space, a library, conference rooms and in-custody detention areas. The courthouse opened in 2010 next door to the outdated and overcrowded building it replaced. The new courthouse received LEED Silver certification for its sustainability features. Durable materials were used inside and out: stone and precast concrete on the exterior and inside, stone and solid phenolic panels, with recycled hardwood in the courtrooms.
Mammoth Lakes Courthouse, which opened in 2011, serves as the south county branch of the Superior Court of Mono County in the area’s population center. The 20,000-square-foot facility has a sleek, modern design that uses a steel frame structure and exterior finishes of brick, glass and metal siding. A pointed prow projecting forward from the front of the building – much like the bow of a ship – serves as the architectural focal point.
South County Justice Center in Porterville, Calif.
South County Justice Center, a 96,000-square-foot courthouse in Porterville, opened in 2013. The building, three stories plus basement, includes nine courtrooms, judges’ chambers, courtroom holding areas, jury deliberations rooms, support services, clerks offices and work areas, public walk-up windows and queuing, holding cells and a below-grade sally port.
The Shasta County Courthouse will sit on a two-acre site in Redding located directly across the street from the overcrowded and inadequate existing courthouse that it will replace. Scheduled to be completed in 2020, the six-story, 165,000-square-foot facility will provide 14 courtrooms, consolidating adult and juvenile court operations into one modern, secure location, and delivering two courtrooms to support planned new judgeships. The facility is in the architectural design-preliminary plans phase with construction expected to begin in mid-2017.
February 3, 2015
Sundt is nearing completion of its first project for the Coast Community College District: the Orange Coast College Interdisciplinary Complex in Costa Mesa, California.
Orange Coast College Interdisciplinary Complex in Costa Mesa, California.
The 78,000-square-foot math, business and computing complex includes 35 administrative offices, a 200-station open computer lab, 11 computer teaching labs for mixed use, nine lecture classrooms for business and computing courses, 15 mathematics lecture classrooms, two meeting rooms and a workroom, lounge and study areas.
The project team, led by Senior Project Manager Conrad Benitez, used a number of innovative approaches and technologies to make the project a success.
“We used 3D models to show them what the paths of travel would look like with all of the piping and ductwork in, and then compared that to other possible scenarios with fewer obstructions,” Conrad said. “Being able to see the end result before it was built and talk through modifications together made a big impact on the facilities team.”
Sundt is preparing to begin a second project for the district as the construction manager for a new $24 million Student Services Center at its Golden West Campus in Huntington Beach.
We’re pleased to announce that Josh May has joined Sundt as Area Quality Manager in our Irvine, California office. Josh has more than 20 years of commissioning, project management and superintendent experience, and has overseen multiple projects with budgets exceeding $80 million. He has extensive experience as a commissioning agent representing owners in the public sector and has a depth of knowledge of sustainable construction and the LEED accreditation process. We recently asked Josh a few questions to get to know him better.
What brought you to Sundt?
Sundt has a long, successful history with a rich culture. Before I came on board, I knew several people in the company and their feedback was extremely positive. I was extremely impressed with the company’s Employee Stock Ownership Plan (ESOP) – you rarely find a company where the average long term employee can retire as a millionaire.
What are your duties and responsibilities as Area Quality Manager?
My duties include performing inspections, reviewing plans and specifications, conducting audits and acting as a resource to ensure quality management procedures remain consistent throughout the course of each of the projects I have been assigned to Southern California.
How does your experience as a commissioning agent bring value to Sundt’s customers?
My experience gives me the ability to help our project teams navigate through the often confusing procedures that the commissioning process brings. As a result of this, our clients benefit by having more streamlined projects – not only at the general commissioning level but also from a mechanical, electrical and plumbing viewpoint.
Do you have an area of specialty within commissioning?
Initially I specialized in whole building commissioning, however over the past few years I have gained a very in-depth understanding of mechanical and electrical systems. I managed the commissioning of very large projects like the San Diego International Airport renovation and projects for the Los Angeles Community College District, the Los Angeles Unified School District, and several military construction contracts with a focus on mechanical and electrical systems.
You are involved in Sundt’s sustainability program. How does your background and expertise help the company’s customers achieve their sustainability goals?
Commissioning reduces building/system operational costs by yielding 5-10 percent improvements in energy efficiency, and ensures that facilities personnel know how to operate key building systems. It’s also a great way to catch mistakes like missing or incorrectly installed equipment, avoiding occupant complaints and callbacks, indoor air quality and thermal comfort problems, premature equipment failure, and litigation. The very nature of commissioning revolves around sustainability. Achieving a sustainable project is one of my key goals on every project I am involved with.
What are some of the trends in the world of commissioning and sustainability?
Commissioning is picking up steam across the nation and around the world. Now that California has made commissioning a requirement through the 2010 Green Building Code, I think the rest of the nation will follow suit. Additionally, we are starting to see a trend with whole building commissioning. Verifying the integrity of building envelopes is becoming more common, along with the more historically commissioned mechanical and electrical systems.