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Get to Know the Construction Crew

The Building Our Future project would not be possible without the dedicated construction workers who are bringing our vision to life. In this section, you’ll learn about their connections to Cleveland and the region, their individual contributions to the project, and some fun facts about their lives outside of work. 


Monica Bourn

Position: Safety Manager for RG Construction

 

Affiliated Company: The AKA Team

 

What does this project mean to you? It’s the largest project I have ever worked on. I enjoy that I see new faces every single day. There is always a lot going on and new things to see.

 

What is something unique about you that you'd like to share? I am a born and raised City of Cleveland resident and Sherwin-Williams is meaningful to me because I just purchased a new home and repainted the entire house using Sherwin-Williams paint!

 

What do you enjoy doing in your personal time away from the job site?

When I am indoors and have free time, I really love to watch black and white movies. I also really enjoy baking. When I am outdoors, I love to garden.

Kevin Busch

Position: Union Carpenter

 

Affiliated Company: Next 150

 

What does this project mean to you? I haven’t worked many projects in Cleveland, but this has been one of the largest by far. I think this is huge for the City of Cleveland; it’s changing the perception of downtown, and I think will attract more people.

 

What do you enjoy doing in your personal time away from the job site? The usual – go out to eat, catch a couple sports games, work on projects around the house. I’m a simple guy.

Deontae Callahan

Position: IronWorker Foreman

 

Affiliated Company: KLE Construction

 

What does this project mean to you? This project means a lot to the city – it means a lot to me! Ever since I got into the iron workers, it’s always been my dream to build skyscrapers. As far as Cleveland goes, building a skyscraper right next to Public Square – it doesn’t get more Cleveland than that!

 

What is something unique about you that you'd like to share? I’ve started learning Spanish so I can be more relatable to some of the guys on the site.

 

What do you enjoy doing in your personal time away from the job site?

I like to relax in my free time. Take a nice shower, go to dinner, hang out with my family.

Andrea Collins

Position: Laborer

 

Affiliated Company: Donley's

 

What does this project mean to you? I do love to paint, and Sherwin-Williams does have every color, so I like to be a part of it and am looking forward to seeing the finished project. That will be super cool for me, personally.

 

What is something unique about you that you'd like to share? I grew up in the Princeton/Trenton, New Jersey area. Then, I moved to Columbia, South Carolina. I then moved to Ohio. For college, I went to the Art Institute of Pittsburgh.

 

What do you enjoy doing in your personal time away from the job site? In my free time, there are a few shows that I like to binge-watch when I actually get some free time. I don’t usually make a lot of free time for myself because when I do, I start shopping. So, I like to keep busy with work and some of my shows.

Luis Comacho

Position: Laborer

 

Affiliated Company: Leggon Construction

 

What does this project mean to you? This project allows me to provide for my family financially. I’m also able to spend more time with my wife and five kids. I also think this will mean a lot to the city – it’s giving people jobs now and in the future.

 

What is something unique about you that you'd like to share? This project has given me the opportunity to see how a building is started from the ground up. It’s very different than building in Puerto Rico because we don’t have basements. So that’s been interesting to watch for a building this size.

 

What do you enjoy doing in your personal time away from the job site? I’m from Puerto Rico, so I like to spend time outside near the water, fishing and cooking out with my family.

Robert "Bobby" Craig

Position: 310 Laborer

 

Affiliated Company: Burkshire Construction

 

What is something different about this project than others you have worked on? This is by far the biggest project I’ve worked on in the city. I’ve never seen a job at which the windows are being installed at the same time the floors are being put in, while the elevator workers are doing their own thing. There are a lot of moving parts and pieces.

 

Everyone seems to work well together, and it’s well coordinated. I’ve been in construction 19 years, and I’ve seen the most women in the field on this project in my experience.

 

What do you enjoy doing on your personal time away from the job site? In my spare time, you can find me in the gym or on the grill. I have a wrap business as well that I started while on the Metropolitan at The 9 project. I’m a proud dad of two sons. They’re excited to see how the skyline is going to change.

Rhonda Evans

Position: Concrete Finisher Apprentice

 

Affiliated Company: Baker Concrete

 

What does this project mean to you? I feel like being here has given me an opportunity to change the direction of my life and my kids’ lives. I feel like this apprenticeship, being on this project, work with the people I’m working with, opens my world up so I can provide a better life for me and my kids. I think the City of Cleveland will benefit too.

 

What is something unique about you that you'd like to share? I’m excited to learn. I ask a lot of questions so I can really understand what and why I’m doing something.

Gordon Everett

Position: Electrician

 

Affiliated Company: DZP JV, LLC

 

What does this project mean to you? It’s really cool to be on a project of this magnitude because I’ve never worked on a skyscraper before. […] I like that I’ve had a part in a 36-story building going up.

 

What is something unique about you that you'd like to share? I’m originally from western PA, currently living on the West side of Cleveland. The city has been great to me and my family. I have three boys and a girl, so being on this project helps me support them and my wife.

Jose Figueroa

Position: Glazier

 

Affiliated Company: Enclos

 

What does this project mean to you? Construction wasn’t my first choice of careers. I turned down the opportunity to be a glazier before ultimately deciding to join the trade. It turned out to be one of the best decisions I made.

I’ve been on a few major projects in the city in my five years, but none compare in size or diversity to this one. I think it’s cool to be able to show my kids I helped build this skyscraper.

 

What does this project mean to Cleveland? Sherwin-Williams is a major company; I think they are making history with this building.

 

What do you like to do in your spare time? In my spare time, I spend as much time with my wife, 3-year-old son and 1 year old daughter as possible. There are no guarantees in this industry, and I want to make sure I make it back home to them every day.

Niki Filippis

Position: Project Manager

 

Affiliated Company: Donley’s Inc.

 

What does this project mean to you?  I’m proud to be part of a significant milestone project in the City of Cleveland. I grew up on the East side and [am] excited to be part of a project in the neighborhood where I grew up.

 

What is something unique about you that you or others recognize?  I was interested in being an architect but when shadowing an architecture firm, I realized I was more interested in being involved with the construction of buildings versus designing them. I changed my major from Architecture to Construction Management.

 

What do you enjoy doing on your personal time away from the job site?  When I am not at work, I enjoy being around friends and family. I spend a lot of time with my four dogs and my two sisters who are, conveniently, my neighbors. I enjoy working on cars, watching and playing sports, and visiting new cities and countries.

Mackenzie Galloway

Position: Union Operator

 

Affiliated Company: Independence Excavating

 

What does this project mean to you? I am thankful for the job security that this project brings, along with the job experience. I realize the extent of how much my hard work will be showcased in the final product of the project.

 

What is something unique about you that you or others recognize?  I am always in a good mood and ready to take on new tasks for the day/week.

 

What do you enjoy doing on your personal time away from the job site?  I am an avid hunter, specifically with the bow. I have a bucket list of animals that I hope to hunt. My next big adventure is going out west to hunt elk.

Melissa Giancola

Position: Safety Coordinator

 

Affiliated Company: DZP

 

What does this project mean to you? Being from Cleveland, I love seeing the redevelopment of the city. Sherwin Williams keeping the headquarters here will show the people of the city that there is a huge international company that has hope and faith in what this city can offer.

 

What advice do you have for other women interested in the construction industry? I think a lot of women are intimidated to be in this field. What I found, however, is that if you show that you want to work, and want to work hard, then others on site will respect it and work with you. I’d tell women thinking about getting into the industry to reach out to someone at the Union Hall. Ask them about what the job entails, feel it out, and see if you’d be comfortable in that position. Be confident- it’s not as scary as women think!

 

What do you enjoy doing in your personal time away from the job site?

When I’m not on the job, I’m playing with my four kids and nieces and nephews. I hang out with my family and coach basketball for my son’s city league team.

Herman Grace

Position: 310 Laborer

 

Affiliated Company: Baker Concrete

 

What is something different about this project than others you have worked on?

I’ve been a laborer with 310 for the last 28 years and this is the biggest project I’ve been on. There is a lot of diversity on the project but what’s different about it is that they aren’t just laborers, they’re coming to the project as skilled tradesmen – ironworkers, carpenters, pipe fitters, etc.


What is special about this project in particular?

This building is the opposite of an eye sore, it’s eye candy for the city! The way it looks, where it’s placed on Public Square – it’s going to let people know Cleveland is place you want to be.


What do you enjoy doing on your personal time away from the job site?

I’m a sports and family man when I’m not at work. I like to take it easy and relax.

Deedee Hagler

Position: Laborer

 

Affiliated Company: Independence Excavating

 

What does this project mean to you? The project will bring jobs to the city and boost the economy, I hope. I’m excited to see how the new skyline will look once it’s built.

 

What advice do you have for other women interested in the construction industry? I’ve been in the construction industry for about 5.5 years. My earliest exposure was in Max Hayes High School Building Construction Trade. I also joined Hard Hatted Women for more experience. That helped to build my confidence as a woman in the field. I’d tell other women to visit a local union hall or connect with a BA if they are interested in getting into construction.

 

What do you enjoy doing on your personal time away from the job site? I love to shop lol and read – Danielle Steel is one of the latest authors I’ve liked reading. I’m currently reading The Coldest Winter Ever by Sistah Souljah. I also enjoy spending time with my family – and new grandson!

Alifia Hairston

Position: Carpenter

 

Affiliated Company: Next Generation Construction

 

What is something different about this project than other you have worked on? It is definitely the largest project I have been on. I also notice how clean the project is.

What do you enjoy doing on your personal time away from the job site? My favorite thing to do when I am not working is vacationing. I recently went to see my daughter who lives on a military base in Washington state. My favorite vacation location would definitely be Barbados, but Peru was really cool too.

Antoinette Jones

Position: Laborer

 

Affiliated Company: Ozanne

 

What is something different about this project than others you have worked on? This project is a lot different than others mainly because of the size. The large work environment is definitely different.

What does this project mean to you? This project does mean a lot to me. My brother who worked for Sherwin-Williams passed away in 2006. When I come to this project, it makes me think of him.

What do you enjoy doing in your personal time away from the job site? In my free time I like being with my family. I have two kids, a daughter and a son who I spend my free time with.

Kaitlin Kleinman

Position: Apprentice Caprenter

 

Affiliated Company: Competitive Interiors (RG Subcontractor)

 

What does this project mean to you? It’s awesome to be part of such a meaningful project and big endeavor, and to do something locally in Ohio for an Ohio-based company is pretty awesome.

 

What is something different about this project than others you have worked on? I’ve been on the project since December 23 working with Competitive Interiors. This project is different because technology and safety are at the forefront.

 

What do you enjoy doing on your personal time away from the job site? When I’m not on site, I love hiking and camping. And spending time with my three crazy dogs!

Kat Minton

Position: Project Manager

 

Affiliated Company: Welty-Gilbane Joint Venture

 

What does this project mean to you? This project means a lot to me because it’s cool to see that Sherwin-Williams decided to stay in the Cleveland area. It’s awesome to be a part of something so large and impactful to the city.

 

What is something different about this project than others you have worked on? I have been on the project since August of 2021. This project is different from other projects mainly because of the size and coordination with the Major Trade Partners (MTPs) and subcontractors. There is a ton of collaboration which is different and good.

Kenisha Newsome

Position: Finisher Apprentice

 

Affiliated Company: Baker Concrete

 

What does this project mean to you? On my past projects, I was the only woman – and the only woman of color – on the team. There are many workers who are women and who have diverse backgrounds on this one.

 

This project will bring economic opportunities to the city for sure, but more importantly, I think it’s cool how this project is bringing different types of people together to work on it.

 

What do you enjoy doing on your personal time away from the job site? I love a good nap in my spare time! I enjoy taking my kids into nature as well; we have gorgeous Metroparks here that I love exposing them to.

Chyan Nordquist

Position: Apprentice

 

Affiliated Company: Zenith

 

What does this project mean to you? I think the headquarters staying in Cleveland will bring more people to the city and give people like me more opportunities for work. More people, more buildings, better job security – which makes me happy because I have a wedding to pay for!

 

What is something unique about you that you’d like to share? I’m in the fifth year of my apprenticeship and will graduate this May. This isn’t my first project, but absolutely the biggest project I’ve been on. Everybody gets along and the time management on this job is better than what I’ve experienced on other projects.

 

What do you enjoy doing in your personal time away from the job site? On the weekends, if my boys don’t have sports, we like to kayak and spend as much time outside as possible.

Elisha Simmons

Position: Foreman with the Carpenter Union

 

Affiliated Company: Donley’s Inc.

 

What does this project mean to you? This project is a way to support my family.

 

What is something unique about you that you or others recognize?  I enjoy teaching others. I am willing to lend a hand to anyone that needs it. I don’t want to see people around me fail. I care about the success of others.

 

What do you enjoy doing on your personal time away from the job site?  With being a loving husband and a father of four, I love to spend every minute I have with my family. Family is important to me. I have a two-year-old son and I want to see him grow up in a loving and supportive environment. I enjoy taking my son to the Kiddie Park.

Mary Jo Snowbrick

Position: Sheet Metal Installer

 

Affiliated Company: TH Martin

 

What is something different about this project than others you have worked on?

I enjoy that we are always supplied with water and ice. The safety on the project is emphasized more than other projects I have been on as well.


How is this project meaningful to you?

I like this job because I know a lot of the people on the project. We are able to work together well as well as getting to know each other.


What do you enjoy doing on your personal time away from the job site?

I enjoy golfing and watching the Browns and Ohio State University (OSU) football.

 

Chiela Wade

Position: General Foreman

 

Affiliated Company: Coleman Spohn

 

What is something different about this project than others you have worked on? This project emphasizes safety and efficiency more than any other project I have been on. Safety is a huge priority as well as keeping this organized and moving on pace.
 

What does this project mean to you? This project means a lot to me because I love to show my two-year-old son the projects I have worked on, and I can’t wait to show him the finished project and tell him that his mom worked on it.

What do you enjoy doing on your personal time away from the job site? In my free time, I love to travel and spend time with my son. I would really like to go to Puerto Rico, Dubai or really anywhere! My favorite spot in the United States to travel is to Florida to see my brother.

Raymond Williams

Position: Foreman

 

Affiliated Company: Ozanne

 

What is something different about this project than others you have worked on? This project is different than other projects that I have been on because I was recently promoted from Laborer to Foreman. This is the first job that I am running a crew for, which makes it totally different and a new experience for me. I now have my own team to lead and want to set a high standard for those who now report to me.

What do you enjoy doing on your personal time away from the job site? In my free time, I am a football coach for Ginn Elite Youth program.

Keeley Williams

Position: Project Engineer II

 

Affiliated Company: Welty/Gilbane; ACE Mentor Program of Cleveland

 

What is something unique about you that you?

I am the Lead Mentor at one of the 12 participating Cleveland schools in the ACE Mentor Program of Cleveland. The goal of ACE is to educate and enlighten high school students about the career opportunities available in the Architecture, Construction and Engineering industries. So, I lead the team of mentors and students in the program by guiding the content and staying informed with the local leadership chapters.

 

What does this project mean to you?

The mission of ACE aligns with my vision for a diversified industry and for helping others. The next generation of designers and builders will bring innovative perspectives to the industry and can help our communities become better places to live and work.

 

What does this project mean to Cleveland?

Providing our community with the opportunity to participate in such an impactful project as BOF allows our businesses and people to gain valuable experience and skills that help Cleveland grow and prosper.