At Clark, we are proud to be made up of individuals from a variety of backgrounds and talents. Our “Under the Hard Hat” series is designed to showcase the diverse people who make up the Clark team.
We recently sat down with Stacy O'Donnell, a project executive, to learn about her background, and what she enjoys most about working in the construction industry.
Describe your background. Where did you grow up?
Since my father was in the Army, my family and I moved all over the country every few years, which gave me a well-rounded perspective on life. I am very close with my family and am the youngest of three siblings.
After going to high school, I attended Virginia Tech.
What job are you currently working in? What are your responsibilities?
I am the project executive for the Tenant Fit Out at Metropolitan Park, Phases 6, 7, & 8 project. I lead a team of amazing and energetic engineers responsible for fitting out the first two buildings as part of Amazon’s Virginia headquarters.
What brought you to Clark?
The presence of women in leadership positions was one of the main reasons I selected Clark after I graduated from college. It was great to "see" my future in a company before I signed on the dotted line.
What do you like most about working in the construction industry?
My two favorite things about the construction industry are the work product and the people. I appreciate that there is a tangible product I can see from the hard work that I put in every day. I drive around the city and point to buildings with my daughter, and she says, "Mommy built that!” I also love the people I get to work with. I truly feel like I am a part of a Clark family here.
Who have been your strongest influences in life?
My parents and my eldest sister have been the strongest influences in my life. My parents have always been the guiding light in my life, and I will continue to work to make them proud. My sister has been my biggest cheerleader in life. I rely on her as my “sanity rock.”
What are you most proud of accomplishing, either personally or professionally?
One of my biggest accomplishments marries both personal and professional life. I came back from maternity leave when we were pouring the mat slab at Parcel O, a mixed-use development in Washington, DC. We successfully completed that job about two years after I came back.
I learned how to balance my personal and professional life. I learned how to be a better and more efficient leader so I could equally dedicate time to my new role as a mother.
What, if any, obstacles did you overcome to get where you are today professionally?
For me, I learned to trust my gut and lean into my confidence. It wasn't easy when I first started as a young female engineer managing a bunch of facade trade contractors. At first, I didn't trust my knowledge and found speaking up - or over - well-seasoned foreman a challenge. Once I learned to trust that Clark hired me for a reason, and knew that I had the support of leadership, I was able to find my own voice and management style.
What does "Thrive as You, Succeed Together” mean to you?
Our accomplishments as a company are 100% a team effort. That team, however, is made up of unique and bright individuals with a variety of experiences and backgrounds. We challenge each other every day to think outside of the box to resolve the obstacles we face.