Construction is in the midst of a transformation, and these 50 influencers are the ones determining where it’s headed. They shape trends and the overall pulse of the industry; they’re responsible for designing, building, and manufacturing projects around the world. They include executives at general contractors and subcontractors, technology innovators, association leaders, and more.
The group we’ve gathered is based on industry visibility (speaking engagements, social followings, frequent bylines in trade publications, etc.) and listed in alphabetical order. Check it out below!
Brian Ahmes is the Chief Operating Officer and co-founder of Parafin, a SaaS for real estate developers to quickly test fit and identify viable sites. Parafin solves the lengthy, complex, and costly pre-development process by rapidly generating optimized building designs, budgets, and financial models for real estate developers.
At DPR, Kim Bates is a business leader to internal and external partners executing strategic oversight of company wide technology, innovative solutions with heavy focus on data, business solutions and security in construction technology. In her role, she supports and creates pathways that optimize operational efficiency, profitability, and scalability.
Darren Bechtel is the founder and Managing director at Brick & Mortar Ventures, the leading sector-specific venture capital fund focused on emerging technologies to improve the way we design, build, and maintain our built environment. Bechtel serves on the boards of BuildingConnected, Fieldwire, ManufactOn, Zlien, Holobuilder, Safesite, and EverCharge, and he serves as a technology innovation advisor to several industry-leading AEC and FM companies, including Bechtel, Autodesk, Cemex, Knauf, Hilti, United Rentals, and FMI.
As Managing Director of Research & Analytics at FMI, Jay Bowman is responsible for developing data-driven/fact-based market intelligence for AEC executive business decisions and bringing insights that catalyze exceptional company performance and competitive advantage.
Dr. Giovanna Brasfield has over 18 years of experience in the California market in the fields of diversity & inclusion, leadership, public information distribution, outreach, and political involvement. Brasfield is currently Vice President of Diversity and Inclusion at Flatiron Construction. She has hands-on experience in small business advocacy and assists the District Manager and Division Manager in positioning to meet subcontractor, workforce and engagement’s contractual requirements on current projects and upcoming project pursuits.
Kevin Bredeson is VP of Preconstruction + Technology at BE&K Building Group. Bredeson has significant experience heading up VDC initiatives for Skender, Suffolk Construction, Pepper Construction, and Gilbane Building Company. He earned a Bachelor of Science in construction management from Northern Michigan University.
Before Mallorie Brodie became CEO and Co-founder of Bridgit, she had exposure to the construction industry through her family. Bridgit's flagship product, Bridgit Bench, optimizes construction resource management and workforce planning for contractors.
Jean Brownhill is the CEO & Founder at Sweeten. Sweeten has nearly $1.5 billion of construction projects in the pipeline. The two-sided marketplace brings trust, transparency, and technology to a $400 billion industry, creating the end-to-end standard for the renovation experience. Sweeten has been called a “Renovation Game-Changer,” with Jean hailed as “The Contractor Whisperer” by New York Magazine and one of Inc. Magazine’s “Most Innovative Women Founders in America.”
As Chief Information Officer at PCL Construction, Mark Bryant is responsible for the strategic and innovative advancement of information technology (IT) within the PCL family of companies. Bryant has over two decades of IT expertise, having served in the financial services, software, manufacturing, and AEC industries. Prior to joining PCL, he led the technology operations at a century-old financial services firm and was CIO at a leading planning, engineering, and consulting firm.
David Burns is the Director of Innovation and Field Applications at McCarthy Building Companies. Burns has over 13 years of technology implementation experience within the construction industry, with a strategic focus on large scale enterprise systems design, evaluations, and deployments. In his current role, Burns is responsible for developing the organization’s innovation competencies, including best-in-class research, identification, prioritization, and execution of new value-add technology capabilities across the organization.
Stephanie V. Burns is a seasoned community executive with over 20 years of experience in outreach, utilization, community service, and employee engagement. Notably, she has been an integral player in some of Turner’s most iconic building projects including the New York Aquarium, Madison Square Garden, JetBlue Terminal 5, Yankee Stadium, and Citi Group to ensure delivery of a minimum of 20% UBE utilization.
In her role as Chief Strategy Officer at CSM Group, Julie Byrne will focus on guiding CSM Group Strategy, corporate development and partnerships, along with the company's positioning within the market.
Jit Kee Chin is the Chief Data Officer and Executive Vice President at Suffolk and is responsible for leveraging big data and advanced analytics to improve the organization’s core business. Chin is also responsible for helping to position Suffolk to achieve its vision of transforming the construction experience while working closely with the company’s Innovation and Strategy teams to fundamentally reinvent the future of construction in the digital age.
As the Director of Virtual Design and Construction at The PENTA Building Group, Cliff Cole manages the overall direction and implementation of PENTA's BIM process, policies, and procedures. Under Cliff’s leadership, PENTA’s VDC team has been able to implement innovative technologies and processes that increase efficiency, save time, money, and improve overall jobsite safety. Today, he helps lead and supports several company initiatives that harness the power of technology and use it to revolutionize the way The PENTA Building Group does business.
Justin Davis PE, LEED AP BD+C, is Executive Vice President of Preconstruction at Walker Engineering. Davis provides oversight and leadership for preconstruction, estimating, and business development services for all divisions in all 4 WEI's locations in Dallas/Fort Worth, Houston, Austin, and San Antonio. Additionally, Davis helps WEI growth and greater involvement in the health care, higher education, industrial, commercial, and mission critical markets in Texas to grow the firm in multiple market sectors across the state.
As Principal and CEO, Michael DeLacey oversees all aspects of Microdesk’s sales, marketing, consulting, and software development operations. He has 28 years of experience integrating technology into the planning, design, construction, and operations, and maintenance process, specializing in Building Information Modeling (BIM) and Enterprise Asset Management (EAM).
Dustin DeVan is the VP of Industry Strategy for Construction at Autodesk as well as the co-founder of BuildingConnected, the leading preconstruction platform enabling real estate owners and general contractors to hire qualified contractors for their projects. Before founding BuildingConnected in 2012, DeVan worked in commercial construction for more than six years as an engineer, scheduler, estimator, and project manager for some of the largest construction companies in the country, including Bechtel, Rudolph and Sletten, and XL Construction.
Jesse Devitte is a co-founder of Borealis Ventures and leads the firm’s Built Environment Investment Team. The Borealis Built Environment Investment Team has made investments in industry-leading companies including SketchUp, Newforma, Flux, Builtr Labs, FieldLens, SmartVid, Measurabl, Blokable, Dandelion Energy, Honest Buildings and Courbanize. Prior to co-founding Borealis Ventures, Devitte served as an executive in two public application software companies: Softdesk EVP/President and as VP of the Autodesk AEC Market Group.
As a CEO of Pype Inc, Sunil is responsible for overall product vision and company growth. Sunil brings more than a decade of experience working on residential and commercial construction projects ranging from $100k to $250 million. With an entrepreneurial spirit and a passion for setting up and growing an innovative software business, Sunil Co-founded Pype Inc in 2013.
Laura Dwyer became the Global Innovation Leader in 2018 for DuPont Performance Building Solutions, a $1.3 billion material and building science supplier to the construction industry. Dwyer is focused on identifying, collaborating and helping to address the biggest opportunities to improve construction globally. Her 20-year career in the construction industry has spanned sales, marketing communications, channel management, and strategic marketing.
Matt Gray is the co-founder of BuiltWorlds, a Chicago-based community, media platform, and network aimed at bridging the gap between technology and construction. He’s also the co-chair of leading construction firm Graycor.
Stacey Harris is a Project Superintendent at Consigli Construction with Consigli’s Portland, Maine office and manages the construction of large-scale commercial projects. Currently guiding the building of ImmuCell’s new manufacturing facility in Portland, Harris brings clients and building teams her focused knowledge of life science and pharmaceutical facilities. Especially adept with Lean project delivery, Harris’s management style integrates Lean construction approaches.
Matt Hedke is the Senior Virtual Design and Construction (VDC) Manager for Barton Malow’s self-perform trades. With over 16 years of experience at Barton Malow, Hedke has held a variety of roles such as Reinforcing Steel Fabricator, Detailer, Estimator, Project Engineer, Rebar Fabrication Manager, and Rebar Detailing Manager before taking the current role as Senior VDC Manager.
Emma Hendry, Hendry CEO is an experienced executive driven by a goal to create safe and sustainable communities. Under her leadership, Hendry continues to lead the built-form advisory industry with innovative solutions and new technology. Championing collaborative, solution-driven operations has led Hendry to implement projects and partnerships with universities, research institutions, and other commercial entities.
Don Henrich manages all sales and field operations for Autodesk Construction Solutions which includes rapidly growing teams in North America, EMEA, and APAC. Bringing four very successful market leading solutions together with BIM 360 and Autodesk’s strong connection to design work to customers in the Owner, Designer, Builder, and Specialty Contractor market.
As CEO, Les Hiscoe provides the leadership and vision required to maintain the continued growth and success of Shawmut Design and Construction, a $1.2 billion national construction management firm. His focus is on creating the most differentiated customer experience in the industry by driving exceptional levels of client service, developing teams of remarkably talented people, and embracing the latest technologies and implementing them across every aspect of the business.
John Jacobs, Chief Information Officer at JE Dunn, previously held the roles of Project Manager and then Vice President of Operations. Prior to joining JE Dunn, he served as a Supply Officer in the US Navy. He received his Bachelor of Science degree in Structural Civil Engineering from Notre Dame University in 1991, followed by receiving his MBA at Baker University in 1998. He has been with JE Dunn for 24 years.
Josh Kanner is Founder & CEO of Smartvid.io. Previously,he was co-founder of Vela Systems, a pioneer in the use of web and tablet workflows for construction and capital projects. The company was successfully acquired by Autodesk in 2012 and has been rebranded as BIM 360 Field.
As Chief of Innovation at Balfour Beatty US, Mark Konchar has the opportunity to develop ideas and approaches to industry innovation. Konchar joined the company in 1999 on the design-build National Academy of Sciences Headquarters project in Washington, D.C. and was promoted to vice president of National Integration in 2009. Since 2012, he has led the firm’s National Capability Center before taking his current role as innovation lead.
Chris Kramer is Senior Vice President - Innovation, Technology and Improvement at Brasfield & Gorrie. An expert in the use of technology to increase productivity and innovation in construction, Kramer has been with Brasfield & Gorrie for over 20 years, starting as a Vice President and Regional Manager in 1998.
As Vice President and General Manager of Autodesk Construction Solutions, Jim Lynch leads Autodesk’s efforts to create and deliver products and services that accelerate the construction industry’s transformation from analog-based processes to digital workflows. Lynch and his team are focused on delivering innovative, cloud-based solutions to help the global construction industry reduce risk and increase margins using Autodesk construction products.
Amy Marks, also known as the Queen of Prefab, is committed to using her extensive experience, thought leadership and high-profile within the construction industry to promote participation, innovation, and advancement across all industry segments. She brings critical attention to attracting a diverse talent pool and tirelessly educates about inclusion issues as a means to bring new perspectives and skill sets into the industry.
Jason McLennan is the CEO of McLennan Design – his own architectural and planning practice designing some of the world’s most advanced green buildings.Considered one of the world’s most influential individuals in the field of architecture and green building movement today, Jason is a highly sought out designer, consultant, and thought leader around the planet.
Rene Morkos is the founder and CEO at ALICE Technologies, the world’s first Artificial Intelligence software application to optimize construction. His professional experience includes working as a project manager in Afghanistan, underwater construction in Lebanon, automation engineering on a gas refinery expansion in Abu Dhabi, and virtual design and construction consulting around the world. He completed his Ph.D. in Artificial Intelligence applications for construction as a Charles H. Leavell fellow at Stanford University.
Having worked with a leading UK contractor, Fred Mills co-founded The B1M in 2012 to upskill the construction industry on building information modeling (BIM). Mills grew The B1M into the world’s largest and most subscribed-to video channel for construction with over 7 million viewers each month. It now employs a six-strong team from its London headquarters. In October 2018, Mills was recognized for his outstanding contribution to digital construction at the inaugural Digital Construction Awards.
In his current role at Jacobs, Marin Pastar focuses on leveraging his extensive AEC/O industry experience to help project teams discern project technology and innovation constraints and opportunities.
Jason Pelkey is Senior Vice President & Chief Information Officer at Gilbane Building Company. Before moving into the world of construction, Pelkey’s career background included working in an IT capacity for corporate giants Kraft Foods and General Electric before finding a home at Gilbane in 2010.
James Roche is the CEO at HELIX RE, Inc., the first company launched from Google X. HELIX is working with a handful of the world’s most admired real estate tenants and owner/operators to radically reduce the effort to create digital versions of buildings. Roche holds an architecture degree from Yale University and has built a career helping industries adapt to revolutionary technology.
As Chief Executive Officer, Stephen Sandherr maintains relations with AGC’s national network of chapters, coordinates government relations activities, and enhances AGC’s involvement with business coalitions. CEO Update, which tracks people in association and non-profit executive careers, listed Sandherr as a top CEO in 2009, a Capitol Hill newspaper, The Hill, listed Sandherr as a top lobbyist for the last eight years, representing the only commercial construction industry association on the Top Lobbyists of 2009 – 2016 lists.
For more than 35 years, Gregory Scurto has been leading Scurto Cement, which is one of the largest concrete construction companies in the U.S. His career-long dedication to the development of better and more cost-effective concrete slabs and pavements has produced significant improvements in every phase of their technology. Scurto was featured in the January 2005 article in Concrete Construction Magazine as a “Contractor to Watch,” and in 2010, Concrete Construction Magazine named Greg as one of the industry’s five “Top Influencers.”
Jay Snyder has been in the engineering and construction industry throughout his entire career. He has industry experience as a construction project executive, corporate director of planning, design, and construction for a healthcare system, founder and managing partner of a risk management tech startup company and as a valued business consultant.
Balaji Sreenivasan is the founder and chief executive officer of Aurigo Software Technologies. Balaji has played a critical role in growing the company to be a leading enterprise cloud software business that is helping North America reimagine success for over $300 billion of capital infrastructure projects. At Aurigo, Balaji spends his time on product strategy, partnerships, revenue growth, and customer success.
We recently spoke to Balaji in an interview for Infrastructure Week. Read his story here.
Clark Taylor is Vice President of Estimating at Mortenson Construction. Taylor has been with Mortenson for over 30 years, beginning his career at the company in 1986, and is one of the foremost experts on preconstruction planning in the United States.
Ivette Vanas started her professional career in the construction industry in 1988 and has worked for two large construction companies over her 30-year career. Her educational background is in Accounting and Business Administration from Jersey City, NJ. She holds a senior-level position in risk management as the SVP of Risk Management for Skanska USA Building, a multi-billion-dollar project development and construction group.
Shawn Van Dyke is a business coach and consultant to the construction industry. Before he became a business coach and mentor, Van Dyke owned a general contracting and construction management consulting firm and was an executive for a specialty contracting company.
Satyam Verma leads partnerships and market development at Pype. Immediately after graduating from George Mason University, Verma jumped straight into working in the public sector. Shortly thereafter, he started his own company before coming on board at Pype.
Travis Voss helps Helm Mechanical (formally known as Mechanical, Inc.) get out ahead of the digital transformation in construction. He researches new technologies to see how they might benefit Helm, and works with partners to press the industry forward in tech utilization that benefits everyone.
Rob Watson is the Founder and Co-Chair of the SWEEP (Solid Waste Environmental Excellence Performance) Standard, a system of market transformation standards geared to move the waste industry toward sustainability. Watson is known as the “Founding Father of LEED.” Under Rob’s direction, LEED became the largest and fastest-growing international green building standard.
David J. Wilson is Chief Innovation Officer of Bechtel. Wilson manages Bechtel’s Future Fund, a program designed to encourage colleagues across the company to create, share, explore, and develop new ideas to enhance performance and has held positions of increasing responsibility with leadership roles as a Lean Six Sigma black belt and as manager of a telecommunications mobility project.
We can’t wait to see what the future has in store for these incredible leaders — as well as which new ones will emerge as the industry grows and evolves. In the meantime, be sure to keep an eye out for the ways they continue to shape the future of construction.