September Lunch Meeting — Sahuarita and Amphitheater School Bonds

Please join us for our regular lunch meeting in September when our guests will be Dr. Manuel Valenzuela, Superintendent of Sahuarita School District, and Jim Burns, Executive Manager of Operational Support for Amphitheater School District. They’ll be discussing the bond issues on the November ballot in each district. Come learn about the proposed projects and A/E/C opportunities.

PLEASE NOTE: We have a new lunch venue! The historic Hotel Congress, 311 E. Congress, will be the new home for our regular lunch meetings. There’s plenty of close-in parking and the food is great! We’re looking forward to seeing you there.

WHEN: Tuesday, September 20, 11:30-1:00
WHERE: Hotel Congress, 311 E. Congress
COST: $25 SAAEMA members, $35 guests in advance, $40 guests at the doorRSVP: Tommy Roof no later than noon, Friday, September 16.
Parking is available in the lot north of the hotel; across the street at Maynards; at Centro Garage, 345 E. Congress, just around the corner; and at street meters nearby.
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September Lunch & Learn Workshop — Event Planning

As A/E/C marketers, we wear many hats. We write, edit, and design proposals and marketing materials; coach our teams to be polished presenters; and plan open houses and trade shows for our firms. Please join us for an interactive discussion with Vanessa Noonkester, public involvement coordinator at Gordley Group. We’ll share outlines and event planning checklists, discuss best practices, and learn about damage control for those times when even our most meticulous plans go awry. Bring your questions, ideas, and lunch and join us.  Space is limited to 15 attendees, so RSVP before September 12.
WHEN: Wednesday, September 14th, 11:30-1PM
WHERE: GLHN, 2939 E. Broadway
RSVP: Tiffany Gorrell before noon on Monday, September 12.
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Western Technologies Seeking Field Tech

Western Technologies Inc., one of the largest independent construction materials testing laboratories and engineering firms in the southwest, has a full-time opening in Tucson, AZ for Field/Lab Technicians. Any of the following certifications desired but not required; ACI, ATTI and NICET soils, concrete, asphalt and masonry. We provide on the job training and assist in obtaining the above certifications. Must have a clean motor vehicle record and pass a pre-employment drug screen.

To learn more and apply on line visit our web-site at or submit your resume to Tami Griffin at or fax to (520)748.0435.


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Lunch & Learn — Storytelling for the Win!

Storytelling offers a unique way to stand out in a sea of competitors. Theresa Gunn, president of Gunn Communications, Inc., will show you how to find and tell the stories that get your proposals noticed. Bring your brown bag lunch and get ready to tap into your creativity!

With a background in communications, Theresa Gunn combines the skills of an investigator with a contagious optimism that inspires people on all sides of complex issues to work hard to find the best solutions possible.

As President of GCI, Theresa has led more than 100 projects for over 30 government agencies, businesses, and non-profit organizations. She customizes each project to her clients’ specific needs. People who work with Theresa appreciate her candor, her work ethic, and her belief that objectivity and transparency are the keys to success. She has provided community engagement to successfully implement local, state, and federally funded  projects from the earliest feasibility studies through planning, environmental documentation, preliminary and final design, and ultimately construction. She has even assisted in site clean-up and decommissioning.

Prior to starting GCI in 1997, Theresa spent six years designing and implementing public involvement programs for the Regional Public Transportation Authority in Phoenix, where she engaged the downtown community in the siting and original design for the Central Station transit center at Central and Van Buren.

Theresa earned a bachelor’s degree in public relations from Oklahoma State University and a master’s degree in organizational management from the University of Phoenix.

An active member of the International Association for Public Participation (IAP2) since 1995, Theresa served as the Deputy Presiding Member of the International Board of Directors and past president of IAP2 USA.

WHEN: Wednesday, August 24th, 11:30-1PM

WHERE: GLHN, 2939 E. Broadway
RSVP: Bianca Rivera before noon on Friday, August 19.

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If It’s August, That Must Mean Relaxation Day!

When it’s August in France, Parisians head for the Côte d’Azur. In Italy, it’s the Amalfi Coast. In Spain, hot city dwellers flock to the cool Pyrenees. In Tucson, smart members of the A/E/C community gather for an evening of friendship and fun at SAAEMA’s annual Relaxation Day. Please join us for drinks and hors d’oeuvres. It may not be a beach vacation, but it will be THE cool place to be!

WHEN: Thursday, August 11, 5-7PM
WHERE: Thunder Canyon Brewery Downtown, 220 E. Broadway
RSVP: Russ Blankenship no later than noon, Tuesday August 9.

Parking is available at Centro Garage, 345 E. Congress just around the corner (a very close walk), and all parking meters are free after 5:00.

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2017 Board Nominations Due August 16

Attention, SAAEMA members: The Elections Committee is now taking nominations for the 2017 Board of Directors ballot. Please take this opportunity to nominate individuals, including yourself, that you feel would be an asset to the development of the organization and would benefit professionally from the Board experience. Nominate one person for each position except Past President and President. A list of eligible nominees is included on the form.

Per SAAEMA Bylaws, nominees for a Director position must be SAAEMA members, in good standing, for at least six (6) months. Nominees for an Officer position must have served on the Board of Directors for at least one year. Affiliate members can be nominated for Director positions, but are not allowed to serve as Officers. Affiliate members(individuals who provide professional services to the A/E/C industry but do not directly represent an architecture, engineering, or construction firm) are eligible for Director positions only.

Please return your nominations to Vanessa Martinez. If you have any questions about the nominating or election process, please call Vanessa at 520-618-5449.

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July Lunch Meeting — Doing Business with the Locals

How can your firm best work with the City of Tucson, Pima County, and Sahuarita? Join us for our July lunch meeting and find out! Representatives from Tucson, Pima County, and Sahuarita procurement departments will be talking about upcoming projects, their procurement processes, and how to schedule a debrief.
Dan Longanecker, CPPB is the principal contract officer for the City of Tucson. He has been with the city since 1999. He spent five years with the Department of Transportation-Transit Services Division and joined the procurement department in 2004 in the Design and Construction Services Contracting Division. Before joining the city staff, he worked for a private sector transit management company. He holds a B.S. in Business Administration from the Eller College, University of Arizona.
Matt Sage has been a contracts officer with Pima County procurement design and construction for nearly a year and a half. He manages and coordinates the procurement of design and construction solicitations for the county, specifically working with capital improvement projects across a variety of county departments. Previously, he spent ten years in the private sector with a geotechnical engineering firm providing marketing and business development to the A/E/C industry. He received his Bachelor’s degree in marketing from Buena Vista University in Storm Lake, Iowa and has been recognized by SAAEMA as the Marketing Professional of the Year in 2013. He is a certified KCBS (Kansas City BBQ Society) Judge.
Cherie Odeski, CPPO, CPPB currently serves as the procurement officer for the Town of Sahuarita, issuing and managing various construction, A/E, and alternative delivery projects. She has more than twenty-four years of experience in purchasing, twenty of those in governmental procurement at Sahuarita, the City of Tucson, and Tucson Unified School District. She is the president of the Copper Chapter of NIGP, The Institute for Public Procurement, and has been an active member of the chapter for eighteen years, serving on the governing board as well as various committees. She was chosen buyer of the year for the chapter in 2008 and was national professional buyer of the year in 2011.
Beat the heat and join us for an informative lunch!
WHEN: Tuesday, July 19, 11:30-1:00
WHERE: Scottish Rite Cathedral – Ochoa Room
33 Ochoa Street, 2 blocks south of Broadway between Stone & Scott (side entrance on north side of building).
COST: $25 SAAEMA members, $35 guests in advance, $40 guests at the door
RSVP: Tommy Roof no later than noon, Friday, July 15.
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WTS Casino Night

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June Lunch Meeting — What’s Happening in Tucson?

Tucson’s city government has seen plenty of changes in the past year, so please join us for our June lunch meeting with representatives from the office of Planning and Development Services. They will be discussing the changes to the department as well as the accomplishments and initiatives of City Manager Michael Ortega’s administration.

Nicole Ewing Gavin has served as Interim Director of Planning and Development Services since January, charged by the City Manager with making improvements to the department. She has been with the city for twenty years, previously heading up the Office of Integrated Planning and working for many years in the City Manager’s Office. Her career has focused on planning and project management in a variety of capacities, including the Grant Road RTA planning process, City/County Water and Wastewater Study, City Water Service Area policy, Plan Tucson (the general plan update), impact fee studies, annexation, economic development, and budget/funding initiatives such as the Proposition 409 road bond program. Nicole holds a Master’s degree in Public Administration from the University of Arizona and is certified as a professional planner by the American Institute of Certified Planners (AICP).

Lynne Birkinbine was most recently the Deputy Administrator for the Office of Integrated Planning and is now Interim Deputy Director of Planning and Development Services. She has been with the City for sixteen years. She left private sector consulting to work for Council Member Carol West and then moved to Environmental Services, where she managed staff in four sections: environmental regulatory compliance, brownfields, recycling, and landfill waste acceptance. During the past three years, she has led several key projects for the City Manager’s Office and OIP including the privatization of TCC management, oversight of historic preservation, development of the City’s bond package for the County bond program, the Ronstadt Transit Center Joint Development Project, and several projects focused on department needs and assets. She has a Master’s degree in Public Policy from the Middlebury Institute of International Studies.

Clayton Trevillyn has been with the City of Tucson for ten years, starting as a building inspector and advancing through residential and then commercial plan review before being appointed the Interim Building Official. He has been involved with a number of special projects within PDS, including sustainable ordinances and operational improvements to expedite the permit process. Before joining the city, he worked in both residential and industrial construction in eleven different states and Mexico, experience that provided him with a broad base of knowledge and the ability to work with contractors and designers as they attempt to align development goals with adopted regulations. He is a Certified Building Official through the International Code Council.

WHEN: Tuesday, June 21, 11:30-1:00
WHERE: Scottish Rite Cathedral – Ochoa Room
33 Ochoa Street, 2 blocks south of Broadway between Stone & Scott (side entrance on north side of building).
COST: $25 SAAEMA members, $35 guests in advance, $40 guests at the door
RSVP: Tommy Roof no later than noon, Friday, June 17.

A NOTE ABOUT PARKING: The west lot behind the Scottish Rite Cathedral has been sold, so they are no longer able to offer us free parking. Please park at a street meter or at the La Placita parking garage on Stone and Broadway, less than a block away.

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May Lunch Meeting — UA Tech Park

The UA’s latest master plan for the UA Tech Park at The Bridges, including the planned $40 million Innovation and Technology Building, was approved by the Arizona Board of Regents last November. The UA says the multistory 120,000- to 180,000-square foot office and lab building is needed to attract tech-oriented companies and would initially become the home for Tech Launch Arizona, the schools’ technology commercialization arm, and related programs.

Bruce Wright is responsible for directing the University of Arizona’s research parks which includes the University of Arizona Science and Technology Park (UA Tech Park), the UA Tech Park at The Bridges (The Bridges), and the Arizona Center for Innovation (AzCI). His research interests include regional economic development, international trade and business development, and technology development and commercialization. He also serves as an adjunct instructor in the Department of Geography and Regional Development. Wright has served in several different capacities during his twenty plus years at the University of Arizona, including director of the Office of Community and Public Service, Assistant to the President, Senior Officer for Community Affairs and Economic Development, and Associate Vice President for Economic Development. Prior to joining the University, he served as chief-of-staff to U.S. Representative Morris K. Udall and staff consultant to the House Committee on Interior and Insular Affairs. Previously, he was a management analyst with the City of Tucson and deputy director of the Commission on Improved Governmental Management.

WHEN: Tuesday, May 17, 11:30-1:00
WHERE: Scottish Rite Cathedral – Ochoa Room
33 Ochoa Street, 2 blocks south of Broadway between Stone & Scott (side entrance on north side of building).
COST: $25 SAAEMA members, $35 guests in advance, $40 guests at the door
RSVP: Tommy Roof no later than noon, Friday, May 13.

A NOTE ABOUT PARKING: The west lot behind the Scottish Rite Cathedral has been sold, so they are no longer able to offer us free parking. Please park at a street meter or at the La Placita parking garage on Stone and Broadway, less than a block away.


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13th Annual NAWIC Shirley Dail Bowling Tournament

Don’t miss the 13th Annual Shirley Dail Bowling Tournament! They’re also looking for sponsors and door prizes. If you’re interested, please call Tracy Miller at 520.748.2262 or Florence Bramlett at 520.419.5851. Complete details and registration form: NAWIC Bowling Announcement 2016

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Job Opening — Proposal and Communications Specialist

Proposal and Communications Specialist

Sun Mechanical Contracting, Inc. is seeking a hard working person with fresh ideas to improve and maintain all facets of new project proposal preparations and communication activities and polices to promote all departments of our mechanical construction business in Southern Arizona.

Job Description

Responsibilities include but not limited to:

*Manage the preparation of submission packages and proposals, tailored resumes, responses and presentations for selected Request for Quotations (RFQ’s) and Request for Pricing (RFP’s)

*Develop, maintain and update information in databases and information used in proposals and communication materials

*Work with technical staff to ensure proposal response is on-point and appropriately worded

*Maintain and update company web-site

*Supervise/evaluate social media outreach

*Advertising management including but not limited to brochures and marketing presentations

*Speaking duties for pre-bid presentations to clients


2-4 years college degree in English, Communications or Marketing or job equivalence

Experienced in the following computer applications: MS Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Publisher, Outlook and background in web design preferred.

Social media proficiency

Must be able to work around construction sites and personnel

Construction related experience would be very beneficial

Application Instructions

Email resume to:


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Join SDA for Fun and Fundraising

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March Lunch Meeting with SDA — Five Bases of Power

Please join us for our joint lunch meeting with the Society for Design Administration on March 22Please note that the date and place are not the same as our regular SAAEMA lunch meetings.

Leaders often rise or fall based on their ability to influence others towards effective action. This session is all about influence – how to get it, how to respond to it and how to leverage it in order to emerge as a leader and get things done.

A notable study conducted by social psychologists John R. P. French and Bertram Raven divided power and influence into five separate and distinct forms – coercive, reward, legitimate, referent, and expert. Jokake Construction Marketing Director Maisha Christian Hagan wants to help you advance within your personal and professional life by teaching you when and how to utilize the Five Bases of Power.

After this program, you’ll be able to:

  • Better understand why you’re influenced by others.
  • Better recognize your own natural sources of power and how you tend to influence others.
  • Build your leadership skills by using and developing your own sources of power, appropriately, and for the best effect.
  • Develop strategies to respond/manage others’ styles of influence.
Maisha (pronounced my-ee-sha) Christian Hagan is a juggler. No, seriously. Not bowling pins or  flaming torches, but projects, deadlines and to-do lists. As Marketing Director responsible for internal and external marketing efforts at Jokake Construction, Maisha occupies the space where strategic and creative business solutions intersect. She has a passion for people, a mind for business and a gift to teach. Maisha’s talks are always engaging, energetic, smart and fun — just like her. When she’s not at work, Maisha is actively involved with her church’s leadership team, writing, singing, and participating in mud/obstacle races with her husband and friends.
WHEN: Tuesday, March 22, 11:30-1:30
WHERE: The Viscount Suites, 4855 E. Broadway, Tucson
COST: $25 SAAEMA and SDA members, $30 non-members
RSVP: No later than 10AM, March 18 to Melanie Ormsby

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January Lunch Meeting — Regional Update with Sun Corridor

January Lunch Meeting — Regional Update with Sun Corridor

Our first 2016 meeting will feature the dynamic Michael Guymon of Sun Corridor,Inc., who will be sharing the 2016 economic outlook in Southern Arizona, as well as news from Sun Corridor (formerly TREO).

Sun Corridor Inc. is a transformative, bi-national economic development organization representing one of the most dynamic and growing major business centers in North America. Located in Southern Arizona and Sonora, Mexico and encompassing four counties in Arizona (Pinal, Pima, Santa Cruz and Cochise) and 72 municipalities in Sonora Mexico, Sun Corridor Inc. represents a population of 4.25 million people.

Sun Corridor Inc. is a CEO-driven regional alliance whose members aggressively champion mega-regional issues that impact economic competitiveness and quality of life. Operating as TREO for the past 10 years, the organization has helped to drive significant business investment into the Tucson and Southern Arizona region through primary job creation, resulting in an economic impact of $7.9 billion.

A native Tucsonan, Michael Guymon’s eighteen-year professional career has primarily centered on political strategy, business development and advocacy, and organizational management. Michael’s previous positions include: Executive Director of Metropolitan Pima Alliance; Chief-of-Staff to Tucson City Council Member Fred Ronstadt; Vice President for Governmental Affairs for the Tucson Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce; and political consultant to The Bridges, a 360-acre mixed-use, infill development that will include the UA BioPark, housing, and an 111-acre commercial development. Michael is responsible for developing and implementing Sun Corridor Inc.’s business retention, recruitment, and expansion initiatives. Michael holds a bachelor’s degree in Political Science from the University of Arizona. On a personal note, Michael’s passion is baseball and he was named the Official Scorer for the Tucson Padres AAA Baseball Club from 2011 – 2013. The team moved to El Paso in 2014.

Please join us for this informative and educational lunch!

WHEN: Tuesday, January 19, 11:30-1:00
WHERE: Scottish Rite Cathedral – Ochoa Room
33 Ochoa Street, 2 blocks south of Broadway between Stone & Scott (side entrance on north side of building).
COST: $25 SAAEMA members, $35 guests in advance, $40 guests at the door
RSVP: Tommy Roof no later than noon, Friday, January 15
A NOTE ABOUT PARKING: The west lot behind the Scottish Rite Cathedral has been sold, so they are no longer able to offer us free parking. Please park at a street meter or at the La Placita parking garage on Stone and Broadway, less than a block away.
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Congratulations to SAAEMA’s 2015 Award Winners!

SAAEMA announced the winners of the annual marketing awards at the December holiday lunch on December 15.

Ron Schneider of Schneider Structural Engineers was named Marketer of the Year, Bianca Rivera of Terracon received the award for Business Developer of the Year, and GLHN Architects and Engineers was awarded Firm of the Year.

Congratulations to a group of dedicated and hard-working A/E/C professionals!

Left to right, Fernando Galvez, Monrad Engineering, SAAEMA President; Bianca Rivera, Terracon; Ron Schneider, Schneider Structural Engineers; Coloriza Lomeli, GLHN; Ted Moeller, GLHN; Tiffany Gorrell, GLHN; and Bob Lara, GLHN.


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Job Opening — WestLand Resources, Inc.

WestLand Resources, Inc. is looking for a creative and organized marketing assistant to add to our company’s dynamic team of individuals. This position will support the Marketing, Communications, and Business Development functions and be responsible for associated department administrative duties.

This position requires 1 – 4 years of experience supporting a Marketing department or function. An Associate’s or Bachelor’s degree in Marketing or a related field is preferred. Demonstrated interpersonal and communication skills are also required, as is proficiency in Microsoft office products (Word, Excel, Powerpoint, publisher, outlook). Experience working with Deltek Vision program is a plus.

Key Responsibilities:

  • Assist marketing staff in the development of SOQs and other business development and marketing documents.
  • Contribute to meeting department goals for quality and timely responses on all requests.
  • Provide friendly and personalized coordination, internally and externally, regarding marketing documents.
  • Maintain spreadsheets and databases for market intel, vendor information, and CRM.
  • Coordinate to obtain and maintain client CIP and budget database.
  • Assist in project close-out process and cataloging of project descriptions.
  • Assist in resume consolidation and resume database maintenance.
  • Order materials and organize logistics for events.
  • Assist in development of materials to support conferences and other events.
  • Provide association event registration and membership support.
  • Assist with development of content and maintenance of social media presence.
  • Provide consistent, high-quality, and timely responses to any and all marketing and business development needs, as requested.

WestLand prides itself on providing a work environment that is relaxed and collaborative, while supporting the highest standards for project delivery and work product quality.  Our team approach to both project and staff development naturally fosters a tight-knit environment of uniquely skilled and experienced professionals, learning from and helping one another.

Westland is committed to creating a diverse environment and is proud to be an Equal Opportunity Employer. We invite applications from all interested parties including women, minorities, veterans and persons with disabilities.  We maintain a drug-free workplace and perform pre-employment substance abuse testing.

Visit our the “Careers” tab on our website ( or to apply for this position.

EOE AA M/F/Vet/Disability

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Cornerstone Seeks Nominations for Construction Awards

Cornerstone Building Foundation is once again asking members of the AIA, ABA, NAWIC, ACEC, CSI, SDA and SAAEMA, the leading construction trade and professional organizations in Southern Arizona, to nominate their favorite industry partners for the prestigious Cornerstone Awards celebrating industry workmanship, skill, responsibility, and integrity in the building development industry.

Nominations will be reviewed by a panel representing the participating organizations. A gala dinner on Tuesday, March 8 at Starr Pass Resort, will be held to celebrate all nominees and to announce the 2016 Dream Team.

Nominations should reflect the best business practices in areas such as:

  • Quality of craftsmanship and consistency of service(s) to clients
  • Contributions to the community
  • Quality of design and documentation
  • Responsiveness to schedule and budget
  • Proficiency in financial management
  • Emphasis on teamwork and collaboration
  • Backup of warranties
  • Activity in respective trade or professional association

The Cornerstone Building Foundation also will honor an outstanding person in the construction industry with the Jerry Wyatt Community Service Award. The winner will be announced at the March 8th event.

The nomination form is available here and should be returned no later than January 8 to Debbie Carlson. You may also contact her with questions about the process.


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Nominations Due for 2016 SAAEMA Board

The Elections Committee is now seeking nominations for the 2016 SAAEMA board. Please take this opportunity to nominate individuals, including yourself, that you feel would be an asset to the development of the organization and would benefit professionally from the board experience. Nominate one person for each position except President and Past President. A list of eligible members is attached to the nomination form.


Please submit your nominations no later than Tuesday, October 13 by emailing them to Vanessa Martinez.

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Save the Date: Southern Arizona Construction Career Days

The second annual Southern Arizona Construction Career Days is scheduled for November 5-6 at the Tucson Rodeo Grounds. The event is intended to increase the number of vocational, technical, and trade job placements in the transportation, engineering, mining, and aggregate and construction-related industries. Last year’s event provided educational and career training pathways for more than 1,000 students.

SACCD needs volunteers and sponsors for the event. Visit the website for full details.

Save the Date flyer

2015 SACCD Sponsorship Information

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