Employee Spotlight: Tara Dillard

Employee Spotlight - Tara Dillard

At KBD Group, we know our employees are our greatest asset. We are excited to shine the spotlight on Tara Dillard. Tara has been with the company for 25 years. Tara works in the Accounting department along with eight other team members.  She started as a receptionist and is now our Accounting Supervisor. Tara exemplifies our companies Core Values and has a deep knowledge of how our organization operates. She is a team player and collaborates well with other departments. We are incredibly grateful for Tara’s years of service to KBDG.

Interview with Tara: Q&A

Question: Why did you choose your profession?

I really didn’t choose my profession as a permanent position. I was on a waiting list for nursing school and applied to a temp agency for a job. The agency sent me to the Kajima office in Memphis for a Receptionist position and here I am today, still employed.

Question: What do you like most about working at KBDG?

I like the work environment; Everyone is so helpful and willing to assist when needed.

Question: What is your proudest moment at KBDG?

One of my proudest moments is being celebrated after receiving my graduate degree.

Question: What do you find the most challenging at KBDG?

Department coordination can be challenging sometimes.

Question: How has KBDG helped you in your career development?

My supervisors are very supportive and encourage the expansion of knowledge through continuing education courses, seminars, workshops, etc.

Question: What do you do when you’re not at work?  Share a fun fact about yourself

I have a large family and enjoy spending time with them. A fun fact about me is that I enjoy event planning. I have 22 years in family reunion planning for 300+ people.

Question: What advice would you give to new hires?

Develop good working relationships with your peers. Teamwork is an essential key to getting the job done.

Read what our CFO and Controller have to say about working with Tara Dillard.

“I thoroughly enjoy working with Tara. Her dedication and commitment to the KBD Group are inspirational. Her ability to navigate through the incredible volume and complexities of paying subs and vendors help contribute to the success of the KBD Group.”Bona Allen, SVP & CFO

“Tara is always willing to help others and step in wherever needed. She is a tremendous asset to KBD and everyone that she works with.”Jennie Robison, Controller

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Distribution South Business Unit Leader David Ledford

CONSTRUCTION NEWS

David Ledford

Vice President / Distribution South Business
Unit Leader

Warehouse Distribution South

NEW WAREHOUSE DISTRIBUTION SOUTH

Vice President/
Business Unit Leader

With the rise of Warehouse/Distribution construction facilities in the South, we want to introduce our Business Unit Leader, David Ledford.  He is responsible for supporting our Warehouse/Distribution Construction efforts in the South. Mr. Ledford is no stranger to the industry and has been working with large developers and businesses to help successfully build and expand their facilities.  He is also an expert in managing multiple projects and as of today he is currently managing over 15 projects totaling over six million SF of construction on the South Side of the U.S Market.

About David Ledford

Mr. Ledford is bringing over 34 years of senior level construction and engineering experience to each distribution project in the South Side of the U.S. He has experience in the commercial and real estate construction sectors, and his areas of expertise include civil, industrial, office, and bulk distribution environments. 

How does David Manage Multiple Projects?

Responsibilities

Mr. Ledford is responsible for managing all major aspects of these projects. He supervises a range of project activities from start to finish and is responsible for fostering relationships and alliances between clients and other partners. Mr. Ledford is also serving as the direct liaison between the corporate management, the project staff management, and the company owner, and is providing direct executive oversight for the duration of the project.

We Want to hear about your next Project

KBD Group has a team of senior-level business and construction professionals ready to help answer any questions you may have.  We are willing and ready to help you get started on your next project.  At KBD Group we provide the highest standards of design and construction-related services that will maximize the efficiency and performance of your business.  Please contact us to learn how we can help build your next project.

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Employee Spotlight: Jessica Freese

The thing I appreciate most about KBD is our commitment to providing a quality product to our Owners while working ethically and building strong relationships.”

GET TO KNOW OUR TALENTED TEAM MEMBER,
Jessica Freese

She joined Kajima Building & Design Group in 2018 as a Project Manager. In January 2022, she was promoted to Project Executive. We would like to congratulate Jessica on her continued success at KBD Group!

Interview with jessica: Q&A

Question: Why did you choose your profession?
I actually started out of college as an Industrial Engineer working on facility and process design and optimization for eCommerce distribution centers.

During that time, I got more interested and excited in the facility construction aspects of my job and wanted to change my career to get more in-depth on the general construction side instead of the design and Owner side.

Question: What do you like most about working at KBD?

The thing I appreciate most about KBD is our commitment to providing a quality product to our Owners while working ethically and building strong relationships with both the Owners and our Subcontractors.

We always try to do the right thing for everyone and understand the importance of lasting relationships.

Question: What is your proudest moment at KBD?

My proudest moment with KBD was probably how we handled pouring Ductilcrete through the wettest winter in 20 years for a project in Virginia, while minimizing cost and schedule impact to the Owner.

Question: What has been your favorite project and why?

My favorite project was probably the Desoto 55 project we worked on in Mississippi where we actually constructed 3 buildings simultaneously in a logistics park, totaling 1.5M+ SF.

It was an incredibly challenging project from managing bad soil conditions to the complex schedule coordination between the three buildings, but I feel like I learned a lot during that project that will be incredibly valuable going forward in my career.

Question: What do you find the most challenging at KBD?

I think the most challenging task, that I have to work through at KBD, is finding the balance between building a good working relationship with our subcontractors, while also holding them accountable to their contract scopes.

It’s important to write a very thorough subcontract to keep subcontractors accountable to their scopes.

Simultaneously, it’s also important to be able to have difficult conversations onsite with our subs when expectations are not being met, but also continuing to maintain a good working relationship with them.You can’t be afraid of conflict or working through it.

Question: Share a fun fact about yourself.

A fun fact about myself is that, before I let life get in the way, I was working towards getting my single-engine pilot’s license. Before I stopped, I was taking lessons to fly single-engine planes and was about ready to complete my first solo flight. But life happens, I got busy with work, and haven’t picked it back up again. Probably for the best, though, since it’s a pretty risky and expensive hobby!

Question: What advice would you give to new hires or those starting out in the construction industry?

My biggest piece of advice when starting out is to always ask questions when you don’t know something and to never be ashamed of not knowing all the answers.

Especially in construction, most people we work with have extensive knowledge from years of experience which is impossible for someone starting new in the industry to have.

Rather than secretly worrying that other people will find out you don’t know something, latch on to people with experiences you don’t have, and learn everything you can from them.

No one expects you to know the answers, but they do expect you to be open and willing to learn quickly.

 

INTERESTED IN A CAREER AT
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Employee Spotlight: Brandon Neerman

EMPLOYEE SPOTLIGHT

Brandon Neermann

Brandon Neermann

At KBD Group, we understand that our employees are the backbone of our business. This month we want to recognize and shine the spotlight on Brandon Neermann, our preconstruction manager in Atlanta.  Brandon received his bachelor’s degree in Building Construction from Georgia Tech. After he graduated, he worked for one year with Danko before coming to KBD Group in 2011. Brandon’s range of responsibilities include working with clients to providing accurate pricing for all phases of the project,  along with coordinating value engineering, construction means and methods, and risk management. Brandon is married to Marianne Neermann and has four children. He has been with KBD Group for eight years and we are very happy to have him on board!

Neermann, Brandon-min
Brandon Neermann

Get to know Brandon: Q&A

Why did you choose your profession?
Honestly, it chose me. When I graduated from Tech, I had a son that was just born and in the Neo-natal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) fighting for his life. I didn’t feel like I could take a job that would potentially require me to travel during this time.  

What do you like most about KBD Group?
The people. Everyone is polite and genuinely seems to enjoy being around each other.

What is your proudest moment at KBD Group?
Coming up with a new solution using secant piles to use as the outside formwork for a 60’ deep cylindrical pit. This prevented the project team from having to open excavate the pit, saving the project three months.

What do you find the most challenging at KBD Group?
Keeping up with the ever-shortening bid delivery times with a very streamlined department while also trying to leave time for personal improvement.

How has KBD helped you in your career development?
KBD has empowered me to take new responsibility, create new methodologies, and generally expand my knowledge.

 What do you do when you’re not at work?  Tell us about any activities or hobbies you enjoy.
I enjoy spending time with my family, playing Legos with my boys, and putting together model airplanes (mainly WWII) era. Feel free to come by my office to check them out!  I also like to read.

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