Someone recently asked me why I work in construction – then specifically why I work at GLY. My quick response focused on the obvious: working in the construction industry is inherently intriguing, challenging and rewarding. At GLY, I get to work with people with a similar passion for design and construction, and truly feel like everyone looks out for each other.

Reflecting on my response later that evening, I realized my why goes deeper than intrigue, problem-solving, and good people. I do what I do because not only do we get to provide others with meaningful built environments, but we have the power to shape what our future looks like by what we choose to build, how we build it, and most importantly, how we take care of the community in which we build.

GLY’s Vision, Purpose, and Values revolve around these tremendous responsibilities, or as I view them, opportunities – with a particular focus on the Pacific Northwest … our own backyard. Below are some of the reasons why I enjoy what I do!

Build Environments that Matter

The Pacific Northwest is home to some of the most innovative companies, impactful non-profits, and advanced healthcare organizations in the nation – even the world. Regardless of size, complexity, or dollar value, we choose to build spaces that will create a more sustainable, livable PNW future for all of us. GLY’s new Market Spotlight series demonstrates the why behind our areas of expertise. The first post in this series focuses on Life Science. Stay tuned for more in the coming months!

Environments that Matter | Fred Hutchinson Cancer Center - South Lake Union Clinic Building 2. Photo © Benjamin Benschneider.

Commit to Sustainable Building Practices

We have Pacific Northwest roots and are leaders in the Puget Sound region. It is our home, and we have the responsibility to protect and improve it for future generations. At GLY we use sustainable building practices on every project, regardless of any certification goals, because it’s our responsibility to preserve our natural eco-systems for future generations. Simply put, better built environments support happier, healthier lives and protect the one planet we share. A few of my favorite GLY projects that demonstrate this commitment in very different ways are 2005 Poplar and the Microsoft Thermal Energy Center.

Sustainable Building Practices | 2005 Poplar. Photo © Lara Swimmer.

Take Care of Each Other

The saying “it takes a village” rings true at GLY and is visible in our efforts to build a greater future for our communities. One of my favorite parts of community involvement at GLY is the grassroots style approach to philanthropy. Rather than a top-down approach to corporate giving, GLY looks to employees for direction on where to focus its efforts. What means most to us? Where are the greatest needs? From organizations that make bicycling accessible and affordable, to those that improve the lives of people living with Multiple Sclerosis, at GLY we are always looking to find ways to help others in need.

For me, I look forward to time spent with students in the ACE Mentor Program, which provides us with an opportunity to invest in our future workforce. Through ACE, GLY employees join others in the local A/E/C industry to mentor high school students every other week over the course of the academic calendar year. By teaching them about the industry at a young age, we hope to open their eyes to the many successful and satisfying career paths in the world of design and construction. These students will end up replacing us – let’s help them start off on the right foot!

Take Care of Each Other | Noah Cochran [center] at ACE Mentor Program Kick-Off in Tacoma.

Building community requires the commitment of many and the acknowledgement that we can always do better. I am sure glad to be part of the journey. Now that I’ve shared my why…what’s yours?