For this, the final post from this blog, the “we” is going to change to “I” – this last post is not written by the “building committee,” but from my own viewpoint, myself – Emily Williams. I’m doing this in order to express some personal observations and thoughts, and recognize some people from the project who have meant something to me, personally, as we have worked together. I hope you will stay in your seat all the way to the end of the credits for this movie!
In no particular order, I want to tell you about some individual people whom I have met and watched and learned from over the past 3-plus years on this project.
Rhonda Zack, a project manager for RND Architects, was so much more than that for our project. She worked on the design itself, and we all remember clearly the day when she came in with folded pieces of paper to help us choose the shape and roof line of the new chapel. In Rhonda I found a kindred spirit in many ways.
Dwight Thomas, chair of the building committee, has an ability to get things done through groups that I have not seen many times before. He is fiercely devoted to the Lord, and equally fiercely dedicated to being efficient and effective. The new building and our future ministry in it owe much to Dwight. I love how he listens and thinks about opinions that others express. He is a great leader in this church, and I am so pleased to call him friend.
Greg from our HVAC subcontractor was friendly and outgoing every time I saw him. I ran into him at Whole Foods one day, and ever since when I would see him on the site he stopped me to tell me what delicacy he had bought there for that day’s lunch. I could see from the way others treated him that he was a respected leader among that team.
Clev from the electrical subcontractor group teased me about wearing my hard hat – what fun we had with that.
Philip, who was the chief electrician, had a dry sense of humor that I really enjoyed.
Thad, who works for CT Wilson, has a great smile and is always friendly. He swept probably a ton of dust and dirt off the floors, and has personally carried most of the construction debris to the dumpsters. I will miss Thad when this project is done.
I can hardly say enough about Steve Pulling, the architect from RND responsible for overseeing the construction phase. Every interaction I have ever had with him has been a pleasure, from learning how the waterproofing was supposed to be applied, to discussing whether we would allow the ceiling to be made two inches lower here to make things easier for the HVAC contractor. Such a sense of humor, and so friendly and kindly a person. I have been enriched from working with him.
Charlie Wilson, the president of CT Wilson, led the initial presentation to the building committee when we were deciding who to hire as our contractor. He represents his company very well, and in these last weeks, since Peter Hausmann left, he has been very engaged in helping us get to the finish line. He has a sense of humor and many interesting tales to tell, and I have enjoyed getting to know him better.
Speaking of Peter Hausmann, what a gem he is. We were convinced that CT Wilson would be a good match for us in part because as our project manager, Peter, a former pastor, would be able to help guide both us and CT Wilson through the many impacts that this kind of project has on a church. I enjoyed and appreciated Peter’s sense of humor and his sincere interest. I was honored to be invited to the farewell dinner that CTW gave for him, and I miss him now that he is in Atlanta.
TJ Land: Folks; if you don’t know him, you should get to know him. He loves the behind-the-scenes position, and would rather not ever be noticed, I think. His experience and expertise as an architect (even having worked for RND Architects in the past) was absolutely invaluable to me during this construction period. He wrote a weekly construction report which he shared with the architect and contractor. He visited the site at least twice a week, evaluating the progress, the workmanship, and pointing out things that might have been missed otherwise. CHBC is so blessed to have him, and I am blessed to know him and count him my friend. Check out the tree that the building committee planted near the new building in honor of TJ.
I know I said in no particular order, but I did save one of my favorite people for last. Zak Hamlett is the site superintendent, here for long hours day in and day out. We have talked over the schedule and the coordination of the work, the impact various things will have on our church life, and also shared about our lives, our families, and our churches. He is bold in his leadership on the site, but a very modest and humble guy. Getting to know Zak has been a highlight of this project, and I will not forget him.
If you are still reading, congratulations! And I would ask you to please do something for these people I have listed here: please pray for them. Please pray that, wherever they are in their spiritual life they will be drawn closer to our loving Father through their work on this project for us. Please pray that God will bless them for their diligence and hard work on our behalf. Please pray that they will have good health, and that they will find success in their future work.
And finally, I’ll say my own farewell. In my role as Church Administrator it has been my privilege and pleasure to represent our church in the course of this project, and to be the writer of this blog. I have learned something new every single day about construction, machinery, tools, and human nature. I have grown close to people whom I would never have encountered through any other kind of project. I have enjoyed each and every interaction with these particular people I have mentioned here as well as dozens and dozens of others whose names I did not list and maybe did not even learn. My life has been enriched through this season of service to our church, and I will not ever forget it (or stop talking about it, probably – beware)! Thank you for this opportunity!