Frequent readers of Kieways and anyone with personal ties to the Kiewit organization understand how much we value the idea of stewardship. Our company leaders, at all levels, see themselves as caretakers of a unique and special culture. I certainly do. It was such an honor to serve as the fifth chief executive officer since Peter Kiewit himself held the role. Kiewit Chairman Emeritus Ken Stinson passed that torch to me in 2005 and at the beginning of January, 2020, I will be passing it on to our company’s sixth CEO — Rick Lanoha.
If anyone has enough experience and vision to step up and lead Kiewit into the future, it’s Rick. He started with the company as a part-time employee in 1986, and after receiving his bachelor’s in construction engineering at the University of Nebraska at Omaha, he started full-time as a field engineer in Southern California. During this time in California, he held many managerial roles, overseeing work in the region on jobs like the High Desert Power Plant project in Victorville. He was promoted to area manager in 2000, and then again in 2002 as vice president and district manager of a regional operating group we then called Kiewit Pacific Co.
In 2003, Rick made a leap in his Kiewit career and across the country, becoming district manager and president for Mass. Electric Construction Co., a Kiewit subsidiary located in Boston, Massachusetts. Over the next few years, his industry, market and management experience grew and he was named senior vice president of Kiewit Corporation. He also served as division manager of three more company subsidiaries, MEC Industrial, MEC Transportation, and The Industrial Company (TIC) Holdings, along with Kiewit’s Southeast District and Kiewit Engineering.
Rick joined Kiewit’s Board of Directors in 2009 before becoming executive vice president of Kiewit Industrial Group with oversight of its then two divisions—Kiewit Oil, Gas & Chemical and Kiewit Power. He was named president and chief operating officer in 2016, overseeing all company operations. Rick’s commitment to safety, growing our engineering services, using technology to improve our business, and staying true to our fundamental processes are exactly the qualities required of a successful leader of this company.
As for me, I’m not going anywhere anytime soon. As exhibited by the continued work of the CEOs before me, this industry — this company — is too fun to tie up with a traditional retirement party. I’ll remain executive chairman of the board, playing an active role in both the evolution of Kiewit and the construction and engineering industry. Again, it has been one of my greatest honors to lead this incredible organization. I’m also honored to be passing it on to Rick Lanoha. I hope he enjoys it as much as I have.
Chairman and CEO