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Who is your biggest construction industry hero?

Julia Morgan. A pioneer in her field, she was the first woman admitted to École des Beaux-Arts in Paris and the first woman licensed to practice architecture in the state of California. She designed Hearst Castle and hundreds of other buildings in California.

If you had to pick one when you’re traveling—fancy hotel or fine dining?

I like to experience the culture of a city, and there is no better way to do that than through food! That may mean eating dinner in a local chef’s fancy restaurant, but the best way to experience a city’s culture is by eating at the places frequented by the locals. I have been to the street markets in Manila, Bangkok, Paris, London and Prague, and some of the best food I have ever eaten was found in those markets. One of my favorite restaurants is owned by a family in Phoenix that has been serving up spicy New Mexican food for 40 years.

Describe a moment when you innovated to overcome a career challenge.

I think the most significant career challenge I faced was completely switching careers from law to construction. There are many skills that were transferrable, but I had to teach myself a new line of work. I took the leap and haven’t looked back.

What is one skill you wish you could learn? 

I took one computer-science engineering course in college and wish I had stuck with it so that I knew how to code.

Which current musicians do you think will stand the test of time? 

Whether you like her or not, in terms of artists today, Taylor Swift is one musician who commands respect and will probably stand the test of time. I admire the fight she has been putting up to own her masters. She’s smart and she’s feisty. I’d also like to hope that Chris Stapleton would stand the test of time. He’s a singer/songwriter, and he has written many songs for well-known artists.

If you had a ticket to outer space, which planet would you visit?

Mars, because that is the planet that has enough oxygen to sustain life. However, I’d also really like to go to the moon, and that’s probably a more realistic dream, because I hear you can win tickets to SpaceX’s starship. 


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