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Balfour Beatty Honors Employee Veterans
November 10, 2020
This Veteran’s Day, and every day, we honor veterans across the US who bravely wore our country’s uniform. To pay tribute to their service and sacrifice, we’re honored to spotlight just a few veterans among the Balfour Beatty team by reflecting on their military experiences and their continued commitment to build and serve our communities.
Brian Cahill, Balfour Beatty President in California | US Navy
Brian Cahill spent five and a half years with the US Navy as a deep-sea diver specializing in underwater photography. He found his way to the construction industry while attending night school and working as a diver and superintendent on a few federal construction projects. Cahill was drawn to construction because he values the tangible results, challenges we overcome as a team, and most importantly, the people.
“I am proud to work alongside our Balfour Beatty veterans who are great teammates and leaders,” says Cahill. “Transitioning from the military to the construction industry allows veterans to continue to thrive in a structured and hard-working environment and provides an effortless transfer of skills that are utilized in our operations each and every day. I couldn’t think of a better career for transitioning veterans, and I am thankful for the work our Balfour Beatty employees accomplish to successfully deliver projects entrusted in us to build.”
Brenda Clark, Balfour Beatty Benefits Administrator in Atlanta | US Army
Brenda Clark served 20 years in the US Army, both in an active and reserve status. Clark saw the military as an opportunity to support soldiers actively fighting for the nation, while gaining hands-on experience in human resources. As a Personnel Management Officer in human resources, Clark spent much of her time in the US Army helping soldiers and families navigate a military lifestyle and understand their entitlements and allowances. During Clark’s service she learned how to effectively solve problems, simplify complex processes and comprehend intricate systems that she continues to apply in her role at Balfour Beatty.
“When I think about Veterans Day, I think about the soldiers who dedicate their lives to protect our freedom and the families that are affected,” Clark expresses. “It was fulfilling to know that my years in the US Army allowed me to take care of soldiers and their families. I get that same feeling when I help employees at Balfour Beatty.”
Jason Davidson, Balfour Beatty Project Engineer in Virginia | US Marine Corps
Jason Davidson served in the US Marine Corps for four years as an ammunition tech, where he oversaw coordination and distribution of ammunition for multiple companies. After serving his time in the military, he joined the construction industry building houses before transitioning to the water sector. Jason’s service in the US Marine Corps taught him teamwork, strategic planning and leadership that is necessary for his role as field engineer on Lake Kilby Water Treatment Facility project.
As Davidson explains: “Construction is a great career transition for those who have served in the military, most servicemen and servicewomen are already familiar with having a teamwork mentality, which is something we really value at Balfour Beatty. It doesn’t matter what rank or leadership role you hold – we work as a team.”
Arlena Hilliard, Balfour Beatty Administrative Assistant in Virginia | US Marine Corps
Arlena Hilliard joined the US Marine Corps in 1998 to build a secure future after attending two and a half semesters at Norfolk State University. As a military police officer and the only woman in her unit, Hilliard’s success in accomplishing complicated missions and keen attention to troop welfare earned her a promotion to E-5 Sergeant. Deployed to Afghanistan, she gained a new perspective and appreciation for life and freedom. During her eight years in the US Marine Corps, Arlena learned, among other things; to be organized, proactive and manage her time wisely to complete missions.
“In the military, you can’t procrastinate,” Hilliard emphasizes.” You have to think of the mission and others before you think of yourself.” Since joining Balfour Beatty in 2018, Hilliard operates by a similar philosophy in her role as administrative assistant on the Lake Kilby Water Treatment Facility project team. Her organization and time management skills have supported and helped motivate teammates to reach important milestones on the Lake Kilby project.
“When you see a company that is veteran-friendly, it shows they are well-structured, and they are going to take care of you,” Hilliard states.
In honor of Veterans Day, she shares a message that symbolizes the lifelong commitment of those who have serve in the US Marine Corps: “Semper Fi” or “Always Faithful.”
Scott Skidelsky, Balfour Beatty President in the Southeast | US Navy
As a Lieutenant in the US Navy’s Civil Engineer Corps, Scott Skidelsky, contracted more than $200 million in construction at the Naval Air Station at Patuxent River, Maryland. During his six years of service, the federal government embarked on the Base Realignment and Closure (BRAC) act where Skidelsky was officer in charge of construction projects such as the Naval Air Systems Command (NAVAIR) Headquarters and numerous base improvements for NAVAIR and the Naval Air Warfare Center Aircraft Division. His experience in the Navy gave him the opportunity to manage multiple military personnel putting significant, mission-critical projects in place. With four years of service, Skidelsky credits his military experience for where he is today.
“During my six years of service in the US Navy, the lessons I learned and the challenges I overcame has molded me into the leader I am today,” Skidelsky says. “Serving our country has given me the strength and perseverance to be a proud citizen, leader and team member in the communities we serve.”
Kizzie Stokes, Balfour Beatty Human Resources Administrator in Dallas | US Navy
Kizzie Stokes served 21.5 years in the US Navy and was deployed in 2003 with the US Helicopter Squadron during Operation Iraqi Freedom. She was also stationed at many locations across the country, but her favorite was at the Pentagon where her office window overlooked the National 9/11 Pentagon Memorial, built by Balfour Beatty.
As a senior listed advisor, Stokes spent her time guiding and building relationships with junior personnel throughout their employment. As a Balfour Beatty employee, the skills she obtained during her tenure in the Navy have positively transferred to her current role. Stokes builds strong relationships to effectively communicate with employees across the company, and serves as a valuable resource and advisor from interns to senior leadership team members. Her experience serving our country also gives her the knowledge and skills to support military recruitment at Balfour Beatty.
“Veterans Day reminds me of the pride we carry and the fraternity the military provided me,” says Stokes. “I always have someone to reach out to that experienced some of the same things I experienced at war and the pain that goes on with fighting for freedom.”
On behalf of Balfour Beatty businesses across the nation, we’d like to say a heartfelt thank you to all veterans and their families for the sacrifices made to protect and build our country. We are proud to honor these heroes across the industry, and the continuous work they do to build communities and the infrastructure that support it.
Learn more on how Balfour Beatty is transitioning military veterans in the industry in the recent Constructor Magazine article featuring Jordan Webster, Balfour Beatty safety, health and environmental director in Texas.