2016 marks the third annual Sam Lilly Founder’s Award for Construction Excellence, which is presented to two exceptional projects completed in the past year. Created in memory of Sam Lilly, who founded Columbia Construction Company in 1925, the internal award acknowledges one project from the Columbia’s Mainstream division and another from Interiors. Qualifications for achieving excellence include overcoming design and construction challenges, successfully accommodating a fast paced schedule, and/or developing positive relationships with the entire project team while exceeding their goals. Each year, three completed projects from each division are shortlisted as finalists. The project teams are then tasked with creating a video presentation showcasing their project and highlighting why it deserves the award – a highly secretive and competitive process in which creativity is encouraged! Once completed, the videos are viewed by the entire company and the winners are determined by a popular vote.
Tufts Hillside & Hallowell Hall was one of the three Mainstream projects shortlisted this year because of the team’s work removing and replacing entire wood roof structures from three five-story dorms. One of many “summer slammers” that Columbia has completed on college campuses over summer vacation, this project had a strict 12 week deadline that included working at night. The team was able to utilized prefabrication concepts to demo and install the roofing in sections, keeping the dorms watertight and weatherproof throughout. Although the project wasn’t glamorous, the Columbia team (Matt Johnson, Andre Chaires, Jonathan Burt, Greg Keller, Christine Sanford, Jeff Gower, Patrick Lowry, Ralph DiNapoli and Carly Benning) overcame challenges, met schedule requirements and were able to successfully “do their job”, as Patriots fans would say. Check out their NFL Films inspired video!