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State of Construction

The Indiana Construction Roundtable will be kicking off 2018 with a State of Construction

2nd Annual State of Construction

February 28th, Canal 337; 337 W 11th Street, Indianapolis, IN 46202

The 2nd Annual State of Construction will bring in an industry-leading expert on forecasting from FMI to talk about future construction trends, followed by experts from various market sectors. The featured speaker is Randy Giggard, Manager of FMI’s Market Information Group. He will be providing national and state overviews for construction performance in 2017, and discussing factors driving the A/E/C industry in the years to come.

Other speakers include:

Following Randy Giggard’s presentation there will be four additional industry leaders speaking on behalf of their industry segments. Those speakers will be:

Julia SaltsgaverExecutive Director – Quality Connection
Rod Foley, Vice President – North Mechanical
Sam MishelowChief Strategy Officer – Meyer Najem
Greg JacobyPrincipal, President – Browning Day Mullins Dierdorf

Registration and networking begins at 7:30am, with the program running from 8-9:30am.




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Build Your Future Hiring Fair: March 8th

Everywhere one turns in central Indiana, it is impossible to escape the amount of building that is occurring. One of the largest booms has come in Hamilton County. Often noted as the wealthiest county in the state of Indiana, Hamilton County also possesses a significant number of individuals who are looking to begin a new, high paying, in-demand occupation, and improve their lives.

The ICR Foundation is working with Hamilton County Youth Assistance Program, along with other partners in industry, education, and government, to expose underemployed and unemployed adult populations to the opportunities available in skilled labor. Hamilton County Youth Assistance will be hosting an Adult Career Fair, on March 6, 2018, at the Ivy Tech Campus in Noblesville, from 10am-2pm, in order to help these individuals find living-wage career pathways.

Check out this video for community marketing describing the fair; https://youtu.be/09zyZXK6ktc

The ICRF has allied with local and regional community organizations to help ensure that we can provide the highest quality candidates possible for your positions. If your company is hiring full-time workers with an annual salary over $27,000, we enthusiastically invite you to attend. This will be a great opportunity to have direct face-to-face communication with potential employees. So far, through our three events in Marion County, over 50% of the individuals who walked in the door left with careers in the construction industry, and most of them are still employed today. The ICRF’s goal with this effort in Hamilton County is to continue with this record of success, and maximize the return for your investment of time.

According to Hoosier by the Numbers, in construction, major maintenance, and related fields there were over 8,000 job openings in the fourth quarter of 2017, with an average wage of $23.75. We are looking to connect community with these opportunities, and fairs like this are exactly how we do it.

To register, click here: www.youthassistance.org/fair

For more information, contact Mike Thibideau at Mike@indianaconstruction.org

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ICR Foundation Partners With Residential Builders

The past few years have seen a significant shift in workforce development efforts around the state of Indiana. Looking forward into 2018, leaders around the state have cemented this issue as a top priority for legislation, and more organizations than ever before are focused on tackling this issue head on.

We at the Indiana Construction Roundtable Foundation are committed to maximizing our impact, and bringing individuals of the highest possible quality into our industry in order to meet the building needs of Indiana, while also helping individuals realize their full potential through a rewarding career in the construction industry. We are focused on helping people by connecting them directly to employers and training opportunities.

Over past three years, through the Build Your Future Indiana campaign, ICRF volunteers and staff have spoken to over 60,000 students around the state in hundreds of schools. These interactions and efforts are an essential component of the industry’s future, and the ICRF is committed to expanding our student outreach efforts throughout the state in 2018 and 2019. With this goal in mind, we are proud and excited to announce that we have formally partnered with the Indiana Builders Association on our student engagement efforts. The inclusion of residential construction within this outreach umbrella will allow us to connect more individuals than ever before with rewarding careers in construction.

Residential, commercial and horizontal all have many attributes unique to their specific environments and business models. But there is more that ties them together than there is separating them. When considering a career in the industry, a potential candidate or student is faced with very similar pathways, strengths, and characteristics that embody a successful worker in the construction field. By working together, instead of separately, the industry as a whole is able to provide more information and more choices to these people than ever before. The more high-quality individuals who choose to enter any of these areas of construction, the better off the industry as a whole will be. Rolling out with this new partnership are new materials for educators and students, and an interactive quiz that allows people to see which construction fields they are best suited for.

We look forward to building what the future brings, and are looking to new, exciting ways for companies to get engaged. If you have interest in finding out more about how our workforce development efforts can benefit your company or organization, contact Mike Thibideau at mike@indianaconstruction.org.

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Next Event: State of Manufacturing 9/14/17


On September 14th, from 7:30-9:30am, at Indiana Landmarks; 1201 Central Ave., Indianapolis, IN; the ICR Educational Event Series will be highlighting the Advanced Manufacturing industry in Indiana, and its intersections with commercial construction. Advanced Manufacturing is the largest contributing industry to Indiana’s GDP, and as such also contributes a significant share of the commercial construction opportunities available. The ICR is bringing in leaders from some of Indiana’s most influential manufacturing firms to discuss their investment in Indiana, experiences in construction and renovation, how technological innovation and integration affects their environments, and common challenges in workforce attraction.

Featured Panelists:

Ron Grammas, Director, Project Engineering- Ingredion, Inc.

Ingredion is a Fortune 500 global ingredient solutions company with 2016 net sales of $5.7 billion. For nine of the past ten years they have been recognized as one of the World’s Most Admired Companies by FORTUNE magazine, and as one of America’s Best Midsize Employers by Forbes in 2016 and 2017.

Ingredion employs approximately 11,000 employees around the world. Their customers operate in more than 100 countries and represent 60 diverse sectors, including food, beverage, paper and corrugating, brewing and other industries.

Sue Smith, Vice President for the Technology & Applied Sciences Division and Corporate Executive for Advanced Manufacturing – Ivy Tech Community College

An educated, empowered, and informed workforce is one of the greatest challenges facing modern businesses in Indiana. Nearly 50% of companies in Indiana reported having open positions for the past year or more. In Construction this workforce challenge is felt by nearly every employer, and advanced manufacturing is in a similar state. With technological innovation occurring faster than ever before, advanced manufacturers are consistently adjusting the needs of their workforce, and their interactions with higher education. As the largest community college in the country and the leading provider of associates degrees in the state of Indiana, Ivy Tech is working to position itself to build and educate the workforce needed by evolving 21st century industry.

Bill Arndt, Supervisor- Urschel Laboratories, Inc. 

Urschel was founded in Valparaiso, Indiana, U.S.A., by William E. Urschel with his invention of the Gooseberry Snipper, a machine that removed the stems and blossoms from the then popular berry, and was widely sold to Michigan canneries. The machine could do the work of 100 workers a day.

Since 1910, Urschel has been designing and manufacturing precision industrial cutting machinery. From the invention of the Gooseberry Snipper to the development of the Comitrol®, TranSlicer®, and DiversaCut® series of machines, the focus has always been on finding innovative and efficient ways to improve customer productivity.

Urschel has developed a worldwide reputation for excellence by working in partnership with customers over the years to meet the ever-changing challenges in the marketplace. Increases in productivity, new products, energy-saving machinery, and cleaner, more precise cuts, are just a few ways Urschel has – and continues – to rise to the demands of this dynamic industry.

Moderator: David Holt, Vice President of Operations and Business Development- Conexus Indiana

In his role with Conexus, Holt drives the logistics agenda and developed, recruited and led the formation of the Conexus Indiana Logistics Council, a forum of prominent logistics executives, throughout the state of Indiana, and six regional logistics council in Northwest, North Central, Northeast, Central, Southwest and Southeast Indiana.  Under his guidance and leadership, Holt developed Phase I: A Plan for Indiana’s Logistics Future and Delivering Indiana’s Logistics Future, two strategic plans ensuring that those things necessary for Indiana’s transportation network are in place to enhance the environment for companies to grow their business, create a more attractive business environment to locate in Indiana, and create high paying jobs for Hoosiers.  He also moderated Indiana Governor Mike Pence’s Blue Ribbon Panel for Transportation Infrastructure.

Please join us for this important discussion on September 14th, at Indiana Landmarks, 1201 Central Ave., Indianapolis, IN 46202, from 7:30am-9:30am.


Contact Paige Riley with any questions at paige@indianaconstruction.org.

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Annual Event Keynote Speaker Announcement!

Gary Bertoline will be this year’s Annual Event keynote speaker!

Dr. Gary R. Bertoline is the Dean of the Purdue Polytechnic Institute and a Distinguished Professor of Computer Graphics Technology and Computer & Information Technology at Purdue University.  He earned his BS at Northern Michigan University, MEd from Miami University, and PhD at The Ohio State University and was on the faculty in the College of Engineering at Ohio State for 3 years before coming to Purdue University in 1990.  From 1995 through 2001, Gary served as Department Head of Computer Graphics Technology at Purdue University.  From 2002 to 2006 in his role as Associate VP and Director, he led the creation of the Rosen Center for Advanced Computing and the Envision Center for Perceptualization.  He also served 5-years as the Associate Dean for Graduate Programs in the College of Technology before becoming dean of the in 2011.

He co-founded the Indiana Next Generation Manufacturing Competitiveness Center (IN-MaC) as well as the Polytechnic Institute initiative at Purdue University.  The Polytechnic initiative is a major effort to transform the college’s curricula and learning experience for the students to better prepare graduate for life and work in the digital age.  Gary is the lead for the Purdue Polytechnic Indianapolis High School that will be opening in Fall 2017.

He has authored numerous papers in journals and trade publications on engineering and computer graphics, computer-aided design, and visualization research.  He has authored and co-authored seven text books in the areas of computer-aided design and engineering design graphics with one, Fundamentals of Graphics Communications currently in its 6th edition.  Gary’s research interests are in scientific visualization, interactive immersive environments, distributed and grid computing, workforce education and STEM education.

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Monumental Awards!



Project submissions are now being accepted for the Indy Chamber’s 2017 Monumental Awards. In order to be considered, entries must be received electronically no later than midnight on Friday, July 28. Please follow the button below or visit indychamber.com/monumentalawards to learn more about the entry guidelines, 2017 category requirements and judging criteria.

Monumental Awards is an annual evening of recognition for individuals and businesses that contribute excellence to the built environment. Registration for dinner tickets are now open. Follow the button below to reserve your spot today!

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Turner Construction is ICR’s newest Gold Sponsor!

Thank you to Turner Construction for becoming a Gold Sponsor of The Indiana Construction Roundtable. With Turner Construction as a Gold Sponsor they will be helping contribute to the mission of ICR to improve the quality and cost effectiveness of the construction and major maintenance industries thereby enhancing a facility’s ability to provide added economic value to its organization.

Turner is a North America-based, international construction services company and is a leading builder in diverse market segments. The company has earned recognition for undertaking large, complex projects, fostering innovation, embracing emerging technologies, and making a difference for their clients, employees and community.

With a staff of  5,200 employees, the company completes $10 billion of construction on 1,500 projects each year. Turner offers clients the accessibility and support of a local firm with the stability and resources of a multi-national organization.

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State of the State: Legislative Update

Speaker Bosma Added to Event!

Speaker Brian Bosma was first elected in 1986 to represent House District 88, which today encompasses the northeast portion of Marion County, a portion of southern Hamilton County and the western part of Hancock County.

As Speaker of the 117th General Assembly, Bosma made sweeping changes to education reform through the House Republicans “Strengthen Indiana Plan.” He also broke 195 years of institutional tradition by appointing two Democrats to Committee Chair positions. In 2012, Speaker Bosma co-authored legislation making Indiana the 23rd Right to Work state.

On May 11th, the Indiana Construction Roundtable (ICR) is hosting an educational event focused on providing a summary of the recent legislative session and a statewide perspective on commerce initiatives. With sine die in late April, the state legislature will have recently finished its first session, and approved the budget for the 2017 and 2018 term.  Click here for full bio.

Kevin pic

Kevin Brinegar, President of the Indiana Chamber of Commerce will be providing the Chamber’s perspective on the recent legislative session, as well as describing Chamber perspective and initiatives for the coming year.

Kevin joined the Indiana Chamber’s lobbying team in November 1992, became the chief lobbyist and senior vice president of government affairs in 1997 and president and CEO in 2002.

Previously, Kevin served nine years as a financial analyst for the Finance Committee of the Indiana Senate and three years as a management analyst for the Legislative Services Agency.

Kevin is recognized as an expert in the areas of business taxation, property taxation, local government, state budget and school finance.

Kevin received his bachelor’s of science degree from Indiana University. He holds a master’s degree in public administration, with majors in public financial administration and labor relations, as well as a master’s degree in business administration (with a major in corporate finance), both from Indiana University.

Tom John from Ice Miller will be moderating the session. Tom John is a partner in the Public Affairs Group of Ice Miller. He concentrates his practice in public affairs, government procurement work, state and federal lobbying and administrative and election law issues. During his career, he has represented clients including small businesses, Fortune 500 corporations, municipalities and the State of Indiana.

Join us for this important discussion on Indianapolis’ economic growth on May 11th, at Indiana Landmarks, 1201 Central Ave, Indianapolis, IN 46202, from 7:30-9:30am.

Please join us for this informative event. Contact Paige Riley with any questions at paige@indianaconstruction.org.


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CM at Risk a Win for Indiana’s Public Universities

When House Bill 1196 became law in March 2014, it provided a new construction project delivery method for public agencies. State educational institutions were the first allowed to use Construction Manager as Constructor (CMc), also known as Construction Manager at Risk (CM at Risk), and now two years later the new delivery method is proving to be effective.

The Indiana Construction Roundtable (ICR) recently hosted a panel discussion where heads of facilities from Purdue and Indiana Universities along with prominent general contractors and architects discussed CM at Risk. Over 150 construction industry members attended the event where the participants emphasized the opportunities now available as a result of this new delivery method being available for public projects.

CMc is an alternative to the other methods available for public projects: the traditional Design-Bid-Build and Design-Build, which has been available for public projects since 2005. A CMc is responsible for building the project and serving as a trusted advisor to the owner. The relationship between an owner and a CMc is typically much closer than in other delivery methods.

Michael B. Cline, Vice President for Physical Facilities at Purdue University, said the process to get the legislation passed was difficult. “ICR deserves a lot of credit for getting everyone together and bringing comprehensive legislation to the table.”

Purdue currently has six active construction project utilizing CMc. Cline noted that CMc has been very helpful in innovating procurement. “It allows owners to partner with the private sector and provide the most value for certain projects,” he said.

Indiana University has also been able to successfully utilize CMc on major projects. Tom Morrison, Vice President of Capital Planning and Facilities, emphasized that larger projects with tight schedule are where CMc has made the largest impact. He pointed to the recent residence hall project at IUPUI, stating, “There is no way we would have achieved our schedule without CM at Risk.”

Adapting to this new delivery method was not an easy task. “You had to culturally move people,” said Morrison. “It was like starting to turn an aircraft carrier. You had to say ‘look, we can do a project differently’.”

Morrison and Cline both agreed that CMc is now a part of their culture and it is a desirable option for the right project. “Every project we have used this delivery method on has been successful and we are glad to have this tool in our toolkit,” said Cline.

Moving forward, on July 1, 2017, CMc becomes available as a delivery method for smaller public entities such as school corporations. The ICR will be looking to help guide and facilitate trainings for these entities, and ensure that this expansion is well managed and this great resource is successfully rolled out.

For more information on ICR events, membership, and future initiatives, contact Association Coordinator, Mike Thibideau, at mike@indianaconstruction.com.

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GCs and Owners Discuss Relationships and Trends

The Indiana Construction Roundtable, in partnership with the Associated General Contractors of Indiana, recently hosted a panel discussion on the importance of building a healthy relationship between construction end users and general contractors throughout any major construction project. The participants emphasized that the relationships built before, during, and after any project are among the most important aspects to the final product.

“Relationships are the connective tissue for success,” said Todd Butron, Chief of Staff and Deputy Mayor for the City of Westfield. “You want to select a contractor you have had a positive experience with or have positive recommendations from other business leaders.”

Building and maintaining these positive relationships are some of the most important aspects of the modern construction firm today and the panel agreed that there is one factor that exceeds all others. “Relationships are built at the speed of trust,” said Jeff Hagerman, Chairman of The Hagerman Group.

The panelists agreed that trust must be earned. “When you talk about building trust, we are not perfect, we have issues during projects,” said Mike McCann, President and CEO of Pepper Construction Co. of Indiana. “When you build trust is how you act or react to issues on a project.  How we react to the bad situations that builds real trust.”

Almost every major construction project is going to have setbacks of some type, but finding solutions and communicating effectively with the owner is critical. “In any major project there are going to be mistakes,” said Jason Deadmond, Capitol Project and Engineering Manager for Indianapolis Power and Light. “But if you bring them to me immediately, and we have time to fix them, they are forgotten by the end of the project.”

Every panelist was emphatic that trust is not only the easiest way to build a strong working relationship, but also easiest way to lose one. “I had an experience in the past 12 months where something went wrong, and I found out about it weeks later,” said Burtron. “That creates this cloud of doubt that persists through the rest of the project.”

When issues do arise, it is essential to be forthcoming so that they can be resolved in a timely manner. “Communicate difficulties early and often, so we can do things to fix them,” offered Scott Clark, Engineering Leader for Dow AgroSciences . “Communicating difficulties later does not allow us to address issues.”

Deadmond noted that from an owner’s perspective, the GC leadership is typically not on site every day, so it is important to have at least one key person there each day as a point of contact should a problem arise. “Owners can be very difficult and demanding, when the rubber hits the road, that is when people’s true colors come out.” He said. “Having someone trained with an ability to deal with that situation is essential.”

All of the general contractors were in agreement that this is the reality of the industry and they have a mission to instill a culture within their companies that looks to put integrity, honesty, and communication right up front as cultural imperatives. “We are in the service business and we have an expectation within our company that we approach every project to build a client for life,” said Hagerman. “The expectation is that we have that mindset and that culture, and expect to be their construction solution provider for decades to come. This reality and vision starts with training that relationships are everywhere.”

The relationship between owners and GCs has been evolving in recent years. Contractors are now, more than ever before, actively participating in projects all the way from the beginning stages of conception to the completion of the project. “We want to be project leaders, not project witnesses,” said Lee Carmichael, President and CEO of Weddle Brothers Construction Company.  “With integrated project delivery, everyone is now involved, shares in the success and collaborates on the entire scope of the project.”

McCann added, “We are seeing more negotiated work, and are seeing clients who value hiring a partner earlier in the process, as opposed to design-bid-build. I want to see this continue because I see it as where we can build relationships and add more value for clients. There is a high degree of leadership that is required, more responsibility, and higher risk, but with that comes a greater degree of opportunity.”

As the nation and Indiana successfully rebound from the turmoil and turbulence of the recession, opportunity continues to present itself, and the state continues to grow. In order to help build Indiana’s future, it is important that these dialogues occur, and that the conversations and relationships between all involved groups evolve together. The ICR would like to thank all of the amazing panelists and enthusiastic guests who attended our panel. The next ICR Educational Event will be held on November 15th at Indiana Landmarks, and will be focused on CM at Risk, featuring prominent GCs and University representatives.

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