Editorial: 05.19.2021

Jeremy Wood Digs MEP Civil Work

jeremy wood

Jeremy Wood’s childhood left little doubt that he was wired for a construction career.

“As a young kid, I always enjoyed building things and envisioned being a builder myself,” he recalls.

In high school, Wood worked as a carpenter and enrolled in a vocational school to hone his skills and learn more about the trades.

After graduation, he worked as a union carpenter for a few years, then returned to school to broaden his background. Wood earned an associate’s degree in building construction technology from a local community college, then transferred to Southeast Missouri State University in Cape Girardeau to complete his bachelor’s degree in construction management.

During a college internship, he gained hands-on experience constructing a new five-story residence hall and also met his future employer: KAI Design & Build, a contractor that was working as an owner’s representative on the project. “It was 2009, and I think I was one of only a few out of my graduating class who found a job in my chosen career field,” he says.

At KAI, Wood worked on a new nine-story patient care tower at the University of Missouri in Columbia. He also worked for FireTech as a field technician on an expansion project at St. Mary's Hospital in Jefferson City.

But he missed the St. Louis region, so he moved home and signed on as a project manager and estimator with Lawlor Corporation, a general contractor. There, he took on a variety of new construction and renovation projects, including public schools, hospitals and churches. “It gave me a great deal of exposure to a lot of different industries,” he says.

About four years into his tenure, Wood learned about an opportunity at Castle and got insights from two Castle employees he had previously worked with: Superintendent Duane Hidritch and Project Manager/Estimator Stacey Lampe. “One thing led to another, and I made the transition to Castle in 2019,” he says.

Wood signed on as a project manager/estimator within the mechanical, electrical, plumbing and fire protection (MEP/FP) group. And it didn’t take long for him to embrace the world of civil contracting. “No two patches of ground are the same and no two jobs are the same, which keeps me on my toes and constantly thinking outside of the box to resolve problems, conflicts and coordination issues,” he says.

His first major Castle project was a utility renovation package on the north campus of Saint Louis University. “We excavated and directionally bored an entirely new electrical system and did some major chilled water underground work throughout that portion of the campus,” he says. “We worked with our McCarthy partners to 3D model all existing and new utilities underground, and then executed it. It was an extremely successful project.”

Wood appreciates Castle’s focus on building long-term relationships with its clients. “We don't want to just be the low bid on the job,” he says. “We want to be that contractor that brings good ideas to the table and really works to service our clients well.”

The Castle culture also appeals to Wood. “From upper management to our field personnel, there’s nobody I wouldn't want to go have a beer with after work,” he says. “They’re good-hearted people who are goal oriented and focused on the bigger picture. Those are my kind of people.”

In his free time, Wood gets his carpentry fix by helping friends and family with home renovation projects, and he recently built a house in Wright City for his own family. “GC’ing my own house after hours and on the weekends was a fun and exciting adventure,” says Wood, who’s married and has a 6-year-old daughter and 3-year-old son.

He enjoys a wide range of outdoor activities, including fishing, hunting, hiking and boating. “A couple of years ago, my wife and I got ourselves a camper and we enjoy roaming around the state and checking out different places to go camping,” he says. “The kids seem to love it as well.”


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