Bud Freeze, Director, Business Acquisition for Alberici Constructors Ltd. (ACL), is celebrating his anniversary this month. Bud joined Alberici’s Canadian predecessor company, RYCO, in June of 1973 as an estimator. He spent much of his career in estimating working his up to the role of Estimating Director, then Director, Operation Services managing support services for the safety, quality control, project controls, tools and equipment and purchasing departments. Now as Director, Business Acquisition, Bud develops new business opportunities.
In honour of Bud’s anniversary, we asked him to share some thoughts and experiences from his career.
You spent much of your career in estimating – what did you like about estimating and why did you choose that path?
I’ve been very competitive much of my life, especially through my participation in sports, and I enjoy the competitive nature of construction estimating. The thrill of victory is often tempered by the agony of defeat, so to be an estimator you must have thick skin. It is important to learn from losses as they outnumber the wins.
What do you like most about your current role as Director, Business Acquisition?
I most enjoy the variety of responsibilities in this role. I have always been curious by nature and this role includes sleuthing out opportunities and creating and enhancing business relationships (particularly on the golf course).
In your time at Alberici, you’ve been involved in dozens of projects - which project was your favourite and why?
I would say that my favourite project was Alberici and RYCO’s first joint venture project: the 1990 Stamping Plant addition to Chrysler’s Assembly Plant in Bramalea, Ontario. The project was a very successful start to a relationship that eventually led to the acquisition of RYCO by Alberici in 1997. I distinctly remember the contract pre-award meeting in Detroit and how Alberici’s President and RYCO’s president worked together extremely well, foreshadowing good things to come.
What are you most proud of in your time at Alberici and why?
I am most proud of my involvement with recruiting and hiring staff with the right cultural fit to grow the Alberici team.
In addition, I’m proud of the length of my tenure; the growth of ACL’s portfolio of projects in the water and wastewater sector; and raising the profile of ACL’s quality assurance and quality control management system, including obtaining our N285 nuclear certification.
I also enjoyed my time spent as Director, Operations Services where I came to appreciate the importance of contributions of the sometimes overlooked quality, tools and equipment and purchasing departments.
Lastly, I enjoy representing ACL at the various local and provincial construction and labour association events…including golf outings where I’ve scored 2 hole-in-ones!
How has the construction industry changed since you started?
The biggest change has been in technology. I started out using a slide rule, then a calculator the size of an old typewriter, then teletypes, faxes, computers and cellphones. Now we have BIM and 3D printing is on the horizon, which was unimaginable when I first started in the construction industry.
Is there anything else you’d like to share about your career at Alberici?
Choosing a career in the construction industry at Alberici has been very beneficial, and for that I am grateful. If you have a strong work ethic and produce good results, Alberici will reward you.
It has always been important to me to appreciate the small things each day, taking the time to smell the roses and having some fun along the way.