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November 22, 2021

Though he passed in 2019, the spirit of J. David Pepper lives on at Pepper Construction. Recently, we took an opportunity to dedicate a key space in our Dublin, Ohio office to Dave's vision and memory.

In early October, we were proud to name our Dublin office's largest collaborative space "The Dave Pepper Training Room." This space is utilized by our team during shared engagements with clients, internal learning opportunities and collaborative work sessions between colleagues.

Serving as the CEO of Pepper Construction Group from 2003 until 2019, Dave was a role model to some, a teammate to others and a friend to all. In fact, it was Dave's vision to expand our operations in Ohio and open our first local office in 2006.

Surrounding the interior of the room are words that Dave categorized as fundamental to his philosophy; laughter, hope, honesty, character and gratitude. These words and others line the top of the training room's walls, allowing part of Dave's vision to work its way into the foundation of each session.

While our team continues to grow and we welcome new employees who never had the opportunity to meet Dave, it's our hope that through their exposure to the space, they'll get a better understanding of what made him such a special individual.

"Dedicating our training space to Dave Pepper seemed like the perfect tribute. Dave was an integral part of Pepper Ohio and this is an opportunity for us to share a little about the kind of leader he was." Amy McNevin, Vice President, Pepper Construction Company of Ohio

Further, it's an opportunity for those who knew and were close with Dave to celebrate his life and feel his impact on a regular basis.

"Dave knew how to enter a room with his infectious smile and contagious laugh. He connected with every Pepper team member, from executives to interns," Kate Holstein, Senior Administrative and Marketing Specialist, said. "He lived each day to the fullest and was a true leader for our organization."

In addition to the dedication of the Dave Pepper Training Room, we've committed to conducting a series of internal meetings that will honor his endearing spirit. These "Pepper Way" meetings are scheduled as breakfasts and lunches between a handful of our Ohio team members, giving them a chance to share a meal, connect with different co-workers and educate everyone on the vision set forth by Dave.

“Dave was a major part of my own journey though Pepper Construction, where I started my career in 1992. Providing me with the guidance and leadership to achieve my personal goals, he was a mentor every step along the way." Paul Francois, President, Pepper Construction Company of Ohio

Sharing his vision through these connected breakfasts and lunches is certainly a new tradition worth keeping as our Ohio offices continue to grow and evolve year after year.

About the Author

President-PepperOhio-Paul-Francois

Paul FrancoisPresident, Pepper Construction, Ohio

Paul is responsible for overseeing the financial and operational success of Pepper Ohio. He began his career with Pepper serving in project management, after earning his Bachelor of Science in Construction Engineering from Iowa State University. He gained a broad range of project experience, from healthcare to industrial projects, and with specializations in commercial interior and institutional projects, where he worked with some of Pepper's most established clients. He also demonstrated a keen understanding of business acumen and company leadership that made him a natural fit to assume the role of president in 2006.

Paul is active in industry organizations, currently serving as a board member and the chair of the facilities committee for Junior Achievement of Central Ohio and as an Industry Advisory Council board member at Iowa State University. A strong advocate for community involvement, Paul also invests his time with several central Ohio charities and educational programs, such as the Mid-Ohio Food Bank, Habitat for Humanity, Junior Achievement and the Little Miami River Clean-Up.