Many things make construction an exceptional field to work in. For one, it’s an opportunity to build a physical legacy. There's also the technology side, where innovations like AI, AR, and robotics take the construction sector to the next level of advancement. Additionally, the construction has made significant strides in sustainability and inclusivity, so professionals can contribute to a greener future while enjoying a more diverse work environment.
But these things are only possible with the remarkable people working in the industry. The construction sector is brimming with innovators and creative thinkers who continuously push boundaries, create visionary solutions, and foster a culture of collaboration.
The Autodesk Construction Champions is an exciting annual and global awards program recognizing 25 construction thought leaders making waves in the industry by driving innovation and change. From design and VDC professionals to business and project managers, these construction leaders aren't just building structures and facilities—they're shaping our world.
So without further ado, we're thrilled to introduce Autodesk's Construction Champions 2023.
Business Manager, Modular Power Solutions, Dallas, TX
Alec joined MPS in 2019, and implements the organization’s objectives, policies, and performance standards as well as oversees overhead departmental functions.
With a senior business analyst background, Alec has leveraged her knack for metric-driven analytics to improve efficiency in her organization. She sees data as the key to success, particularly in industrialized construction implementation.
Alec has a passion for creating systems and processes that enhance production efficiency, and under her leadership, MPS saw vast improvements in system consolidation, cross-departmental efficiency and the customer experience.
Head -- BIM, PNC Architects | Sobha Realty, Dubai, United Arab Emirates
Amarnath has established himself as a true leader in the construction industry, implementing an efficient ecosystem of technologies at PNC Architects.
Most notably, Amarnath introduced BIM across various divisions, which helped teams standardize their collaboration practices. By integrating BIM and common data tools, he revolutionized communication between stakeholders so that they could work faster and smarter.
A committed collaborator, Amarnath proactively engaged with technology providers to transform his firm’s operations and foster awareness and advocacy for the use of technology in the UAE and beyond.
Vice President, Operations Technology Solutions, Messer Construction Co., Cincinnati, OH
Andy transformed Messer's approach to digital construction tools as Vice President of Operations Technology Solutions. His leadership helped Messer adopt and roll out Autodesk products, fundamentally enhancing their business model.
He also collaborated with universities like Xavier University and The Ohio State University (OSU) to shape BIM standards, and he pioneered the use of digital construction platforms.
In addition, Andy is working directly with Messer's digital twin team to help develop Tandem and create real-world use cases with Xavier and OSU.
Assistant Project Manager, Lendlease Construction Inc, New York, NY
A true leader in construction and sustainability, Ankita is adept at implementing advanced waste, water, and energy tracking across multiple projects, helping these projects to be as sustainable as possible.
Her current project, 1 Java, involves tracking and implementing up to 80% waste diversion and aims to achieve closed-loop drywall recycling. All of this is possible through innovative web-based technology solutions that closely monitor trash, recycling, energy, diesel, and water—and are reported monthly.
Innovation Manager, Miller-Davis Company, Kalamazoo, MI
Ariel leads innovation for Miller-Davis Company, a construction management firm based in Kalamazoo, Michigan. His guidance has driven the company's digital transformation—implementing modern construction tools to enhance collaboration, transparency, and efficiency across numerous projects across seven market sectors. His tenacity has propelled Miller-Davis into a forward-thinking culture and positioned him as a true champion for innovation and digital advancement in construction.
Beyond his work as Innovation Manager, Ariel is a sought-after thought leader and educator, having presented at over 50 industry events, inspiring professionals with insights gleaned from his years in the industry. Ariel's expertise has extended beyond borders, as he continues to engage professionals worldwide through presentations and thought leadership at industry events, making a global impact on the future of construction.
Director of Technology, Charles Perry Partners, Inc, Gainesville, FL
In addition to implementing digital construction tools at Charles Perry Partners Inc. (CPPI), Brad worked with the firm's teams to integrate their ERP system with cost management. He challenges teams to embrace the concept of "touching data once" to eliminate duplicate and redundant processes.
In doing so, CPPI was able to reduce process friction, eliminate data silos, and capture meaningful and actionable analytics.
Field and Manufacturing Technology Leader, DPR Construction, San Diego, CA
Chris has worked on highly technical healthcare, life sciences, and data center projects. He promoted cross-functional collaboration throughout these projects, ensuring all stakeholders were kept in the loop at every stage.
These instances empowered Chris to push technology to the limits; he devised innovative ways to create a connected ecosystem of point solutions to facilitate near-real-time data exchanges to ensure information flows smoothly across different teams.
Associate Principal, Director of Project Controls and Preconstruction, Pond, Peachtree Corners, GA
Emily brings over 20 years of expertise in the field working with international clients in industries like, large industrial, oil and gas, transportation/aviation, and government. Her extensive experience in program management, risk assessment, and cost analysis has made her instrumental in expanding the Engineering, Procurement, and Construction Management (EPCM) Program for Pond.
Emily's strong understanding of client needs and operations further enhanced Pond's integrated offerings in the rapidly evolving oil and gas construction industry.
Senior VDC Tech, GE Johnson, Denver, CO
Emmanuel Graves has a unique combination of a Colorado School of Mines Mechanical Engineering background, Cloud Engineering Project Management experience, and a passion for Virtual Design and Construction. He is a natural self-driven team player and is always looking for opportunities to give back. In his role as a senior VDC technician at GE Johnson, Emmanuel is responsible for standardizing building coordination and streamlining workflows in the Autodesk Construction Cloud environment as a subject matter expert.
Emmanuel has also led the integration between VDC and other departments through VDC education, with the goal of improving the understanding of a project’s complexity through model utilization and additional VDC services. The value of this education was realized by the efforts Emmanuel previously focused on to help elevate safety within the company. By integrating VDC with the safety department, Emmanuel was able to coordinate online OSHA trainings and guide the VDC department to receive OSHA 10 hour certifications. This team achievement has sparked a stronger relationship with the safety department and has developed into further innovations and discussions surrounding prevention through design and visual planning. The safety specialists now have the ability to virtually fly through models via a VR headset to evaluate jobsite conditions prior to construction. This is just one of the many examples of how Emmanuel encourages collaboration, while evaluating the value new technologies can bring to the VDC department.
Beginning in 2021, GE Johnson’s implementation of Autodesk Construction Cloud’s new collaborative browser-based workflow began on several notable projects such as Kansas State Indoor Practice Facility, Winstar World Casino Resort, U.S. Air Force Academy (USAFA) Falcon Stadium and USAFA Visitors Center. By optimizing models to be utilized and manipulated in your average internet browser, Emmanuel refined and standardized ACC’s Model Coordination with exceptional results on each of those projects. By providing 1-on-1 training to trade partners, curriculum centered presentations to operations colleagues, and his simplification of the ACC platform (with easy-to-use Model Coordination Views), Emmanuel’s teams are now thrilled to utilize ACC’s Model Coordination via the browser and on their mobile devices.
VP, Construction Innovation, Jacobsen Construction, Salt Lake City, UT
As Jacobsen Construction Company’s first-ever Vice President of Construction Innovation, Heather is pioneering the firm's commitment to cutting-edge practices.
During Heather’s 18 years at Jacobsen, her leadership has advanced early adoption of essential jobsite technologies like BIM and laser scanning. She recently initiated a comprehensive Jacobsen tech fair to showcase the latest in laser scanning, drones, virtual reality, and robotics, and plans to make tech demonstrations a regular feature of future workforce trainings.
Heather's dedication to construction innovation has enhanced Jacobsen's competitive edge and positioned the firm to aggressively adopt significant future advances in the construction industry.
Chief Technology Officer, S. M. Wilson & Co., St. Louis, MO
Jamie has led the digital transformation at S. M. Wilson, where she has shifted the firm to a cloud-based environment. By implementing tools such as Google for Business, Autodesk Build, BuildingConnected, TradeTapp, and more, she has greatly helped the firm increase its efficiency and continue to maintain the company's standard of excellence across all projects.
What's more, Jamie's active involvement in local technology groups and leadership in women's initiatives reflects her commitment to industry excellence and to ensuring that women leaders can share their experiences, hurdles, and triumphs.
Chief Digital Officer, Gamuda Berhad, Puchong, Malaysia
John spearheaded the digitalization of project data and costs, removing the need for paper and promoting better data practices.
Under his leadership, Gamuda has implemented Autodesk Construction Cloud across four countries, setting up a digital excellence office for training and certification and mandating dashboards for reporting.
Recognized as a regional thought leader, John has shared his expertise at significant conferences and podcasts. Gamuda is now at the forefront of construction technology innovation thanks to his initiatives.
Director of Virtual Design & Construction, W.E. O'Neil Construction, Pleasanton, CA
Since founding the VDC program at W.E. O'Neil in 2011, Kavon has been a powerful advocate for leveraging cutting-edge technology.
His influence has led to integrating technology like Autodesk Construction Cloud, drones, laser scanning, and other innovative tools across all W.E. O'Neil projects in California and nationwide.
Kavon's successful implementation of these technologies positioned him as a leader in driving innovation. More importantly, his work has had tangible positive results on the quality and efficiency of construction projects.
Vice President, Business Transformation, APTIM, Knoxville, TN
As APTIM’s Vice President of Business Transformation, Kim is passionate about the use of technology and innovation as a differentiator whether by optimizing existing services and best practices or by developing new methods and tools or finding new creative ways to apply existing methods and tools unique to the APTIM way of business. In her current position, her primary objective is to align and enable people, process and technology initiatives to APTIM’s corporate business and growth strategies. She is constantly looking for opportunities to change how project teams work and deliver projects bringing value to APTIM, APTIM’s employees and most of all, APTIM’s Clients.
“Transformation comes through a commitment to continuous improvement including performance measurement and return on investment. Our methods and results are indicative of that commitment. The key to our success is leading with an understanding of our core competencies, our targeted markets, and the technology, information and flow necessary to optimize our performance and our position in the industry.”
She's a prominent construction technology champion, but not in the classical sense. At APTIM, their construction services are focused on building resiliency. The use of construction tools and workflows are being applied to address environmental and sustainability challenges; through her leadership, the teams at APTIM were able to transform workflows, creating transparency of operations, saving clients money and enhancing safety and quality programs.
Her dedication to utilizing construction tech has driven incredible outcomes, reflecting her position as a leader in innovative construction solutions.
Director of Project Technology, SSOE Group, Malinta, OH
Lauren is a leading construction technologist driven by innovation and a refusal to settle for the status quo.
She comes from an architectural background, and her focus on creative problem-solving, , BIM/VDC execution enhancements,
, and LEAN principles led her to manage a multi-disciplinary team of VDC Leaders, DevOps, and data-driven practitioners.
Through strategic planning and execution, Lauren has driven operational efficiency and established cutting-edge technology differentiation, enhancing SSOE's standing in the AEC industry.
Digital Projects Manager, KEO International Consultants, Dubai, United Arab Emirates
Mateusz is a thought leader and innovator who drives digital advancements and technological solutions implementation on large-scale projects in globally renowned organizations. Having a background in structural engineering and construction management, Mateusz's proficiency in the latest technology, computer programming, and project management enabled him to develop and implement cutting-edge solutions.
Recently, he has successfully established cloud based Common Data Environment (CDE), implemented BIM processes and digital technologies in The Red Sea Project in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia to facilitate collaboration among project stakeholders and accelerate project delivery. Mateusz has developed various custom tools, which played crucial role in achieving exceptional results and meeting project’s extensive digital delivery requirements. At present, he is leading the pilot Digital Twin project aimed at boosting the organization's operational cost-efficiency and employees' productivity and well-being.
Director of Digital Delivery, CRB Group, Cary, NC
Matt's leadership in implementing VDC technology at CRB helped the company maximize prefabrication opportunities and condense schedules.
An innovator and thought leader, he played a crucial role in CRB's digital delivery standards and Autodesk Construction Cloud initiatives.
Beyond overseeing projects, Matt is committed to mentoring staff, contributing to speaking sessions at prominent conferences, and authoring articles. His holistic approach and dedication to innovation make him an exceptional champion in construction.
Kaiwhakahaere Matihiko Whenua me te Wai Aotearoa, Aurecon
Digital Lead, Land and Water New Zealand, Aurecon
Matt is one of the go-to people for major projects that need digital solutions, thanks to his excellent knowledge of the digital requirements of the two largest transport clients in New Zealand.
He spearheaded the Wellington Railway Facade Condition Assessment Project, utilizing technology to remotely collaborate and assess the Asset.
The project won the Building Smart International Awards 2022 - Facilities Management Category and is hailed as an excellent example of integrating technology in the field.
Director of Construction Technology, Hermanson Company, Kent, WA
Matthew has been at Hermanson Company for over 11 years, starting as an HVAC Detailer and BIM Lead. Today, he serves as the Director of Construction Technology, looking after the firm's implementation of digital tools.
One of Matt's most notable projects is digitally transforming Hermansons shop and field workflows. By opening up VDC model access directly to shop & field labor, Hermanson has streamlined construction workflows that have allowed their shop teams to prefabricate directly from a 3D model while also allowing their field teams to schedule, track and order material directly to a jobsite.
Sitting directly with invested stakeholders and training, listening and mentoring different trade leaders and personalities from project to project allows new ideas to be developed and implemented throughout this digital transformation.
Engineering Manager, SSEN Transmission, Glasgow, Scotland
Michael was instrumental in driving digital adoption and collaboration within SSEN's projects, focusing on a people-centered approach. His dedicated efforts in championing new technologies and upskilling teams have led to a transformative approach in the industry and earned him recognition as a rising star.
Michael is currently the Engineering Manager for the Skye Reinforcement Project, which will reinforce the transmission infrastructure of overhead lines, underground cables, and high-voltage substations from the Scottish mainland to the Isle of Skye.
In his role, he has actively pursued innovation and roll-out of digital collaboration on this live project, bringing together new ideas and ways of working across the internal engineering team and the broader business.
Senior Engineering Manager, Bouygues Energies & Services Solutions Ltd, Cambridgeshire, United Kingdom
Mike led the design and engineering of several low-carbon jobs, including innovative renewable solar generation projects incorporating solar car ports, electric vehicle charging facilities and smart energy microgrids.
He's been instrumental in enhancing and streamlining workflows within Bouygues working with the ACC team and Bouygues Coordination Manager, Paul Hiscock, and Document Control Managers, Nellie Giddings and Andy Clarke, thanks partly to the implementation of Autodesk Build.
Working collaboratively, Bouygues has successfully adopted and standardized Autodesk Docs and Autodesk Build across around 20 simultaneous projects.
Digital Asset Delivery Lead, Heathrow, London, United Kingdom
Nigel focuses on driving value from Heathrow’s asset information to enable efficient and safe delivery. He and his team developed a roadmap for transforming the company's approach to creating, capturing and utilizing asset information to create a culture of trust and enable the confidence to make excellent decisions.
In addition to helping transform its processes and measure success, Nigel's roadmap paved the way for a company-wide data strategy, allowing change to be implemented at a strategic level.
Beyond his work at Heathrow, Nigel is a vibrant speaker and promoter of best practices, sharing his insights on the efficient use of asset information globally.
Sr. Project Control Systems Manager, DFW International Airport, Arlington, TX
Robert is critical in managing the digital construction engineering programs for all capital projects at Dallas Fort Worth (DFW) International Airport
Case in point: he helped implement a drone landside program to enhance project monitoring at DFW. As one of the only airports in the nation allowed to fly drones on-site, DFW had to establish its own program in collaboration with the FAA. The team also had to build strong relationships with air traffic control. Robert did an excellent job facilitating this collaborative effort and this innovative use of technology-enabled DFW to gain valuable insights into project progress and improve overall efficiency.
Robert is also a sought-after speaker at numerous events, sharing his expertise and insights with fellow professionals. As a representative of DFW, he organizes events in collaboration with other airports, fostering knowledge exchange and collaboration.
Director of Preconstruction, Herrero Builders, Fremont, CA
Sue has significantly influenced the UCSF Parnassus Heights Hospital project by employing real-time model estimates, aiding the design team in maintaining the budget. As a critical player in the $4.3 billion project, she was pivotal in integrating Autodesk solutions to create a seamless data flow from design to estimating.
Beyond her technological prowess, she's an influential voice in the preconstruction domain, actively participating in panel discussions and podcasts, focusing on evolving trends, data, and advanced technologies in construction.
Sue's commitment to embracing technology and engaging leadership style positions her as an industry innovator and thought leader.
"Apart from technology, Sue has also conducted discussions on vulnerability at GWI (Groundbreaking Women in Construction by ENR). It's one of her passions, and she feels she can make a big difference on mega projects that are IPD (Integrated Project Delivery) with IFOA (Integrated Form of Agreement) style contracts by practicing intentional vulnerability with her team."
Executive Director of Construction - Office of Capital Projects, Princeton University, Princeton, NJ
With over 35 years of experience and currently serving as Executive Director of Construction - Office of Capital Projects at Princeton University, William (Bill) is a driving force in the construction industry. He remains a long-standing advocate for the development of cutting-edge technology and has been instrumental in elevating the use of VDC in design, construction and a particular focus on the advancement of BIM to Facilities Management at Princeton.
Bill’s current work includes the ambitious stewardship of Princeton's 2030 capital plan which will be adding more than 1 million square feet of new facilities and converting the campus to geo-exchange energy infrastructure in pursuit of the University’s carbon neutrality initiative.
"He has a vision and is building an exceptional team by hiring a new BIM manager and recruitment of an AD for project controls, which will allow Princeton’s VDC and BIM standards to reach greater goals.”
Autodesk’s Construction Champions of 2023 are more than just professionals; they're visionaries leading the way in innovation, sustainability, and collaboration. We hope this list inspires you to recognize the construction champs in your organization. Be sure to celebrate the teams doing amazing work in your firm, and let’s all continue to reach for higher standards in construction and beyond.
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