Whitepaper: 08.07.2013

Meet an Employee-Owner

Angeles Garcia-Tapia
Project Director

Dedication and a collaborative approach have helped this employee deliver outstanding results for clients.

Angeles Garcia-Tapia, a 17-year McCarthy veteran, was recently promoted to Project Director for the firm’s Northern Pacific Division. Angeles began her career with McCarthy and is currently finishing construction of the Kaiser Permanente Oakland Specialty Medical Center in Oakland, Calif.

“Angeles’ ability to manage complex projects and her dedication to clients has propelled her career at McCarthy,” explained McCarthy Northern Pacific Division President Rich Henry. “She is highly respected by our clients and her peers and is well known for putting in the extra effort to get the best results for a project. We congratulate Angeles and look forward to her continued contributions to the Northern Pacific Division as a project director.”

Originally from Ensenada, Mexico, Garcia-Tapia holds a degree in architecture from the Tijuana Institute of Technology. Since joining McCarthy in 1996, she moved into positions of increasing scope and responsibility and was promoted to project manager in 2004.

Angeles has been working on the Kaiser Permanente Oakland Medical Center Replacement project since 2004 and was instrumental in the successful completion of Phase I of that project. Other McCarthy projects she has worked on include the renovation and seismic upgrades of the San Francisco Cannery and the San Jose Hyundai – Max Media facility, the Coudert Brothers tenant improvement, Bank of America ADA Program, and Catellus Glassworks in San Francisco.

“It is very gratifying to be starting the next stage of my career with McCarthy,” said Garcia-Tapia. “At McCarthy, we all share the same thrill of getting the chance every day to build projects that serve needs in the community. I can’t imagine a better place to do this kind of work.”

Angeles recently provided some additional insight into her background, goals and the position of women in the construction industry today.

What originally attracted you to the construction industry?
When I was growing up, my parents hired an architect to design and complete the renovation of our home. I closely observed the design development process and client interface (my parents). I was fascinated with how the architect listened to the desires of our family and turned them into a design that suited our needs. I then closely followed the construction process (excavation, foundation/retaining walls, waterproofing and tenant improvement phases), and I was amazed to see how “pictures” transformed into a reality. I decided then I wanted to be part of an industry that turned ideas into something tangible. The same fascination holds true today — I love working with clients and designers, seeing their ideas become buildings that satisfy the needs of our clients and communities.

What qualities have helped you achieve success in your career, and what are your goals in your new role?
The road to success has not been a clear path and at times filled with work-related and personal challenges. However, my approach has been to turn every challenge into an opportunity and every potential barrier into one that was destined to be broken. Maintaining a positive and can-do attitude is one of the secrets to my achievements — qualities I learned from my father. I’m regarded by my peers and our clients as an individual with high standards and a strong work ethic. As an outcome, I have built relationships based on trust and respect.

As I transition into the project director role, I’m excited about the new challenges and opportunities that will be available, to have a greater impact during project pursuits and project execution, and to have the opportunity to influence decisions that will help our division and company grow.

What are your thoughts on the trends taking place in the industry today?
Technology is changing the way we do business in construction and is an evolving trend. Building Information Modeling (BIM) was the start, but we now integrate other systems using a location-aware model interface to integrate the model with iPads, 3-D imaging laser scanning for quality control, electronic documentation via dashboards to ensure the project team has the latest information at their fingertips, and cloud technologies among many new technology trends. Clients are requesting quality projects with faster delivery and want a higher degree of certainty that milestones can be achieved. Technology will continue to have a greater role in our industry and is a tool that if used properly can help in this process.

What are your thoughts on the role of women in the industry?
It is exciting to live in this time and see the growing number of women in our industry. I recall starting my career and being the only female project engineer on the project. Fast forward two decades and we now have a greater number of females interested in construction management. As the number of project engineers, assistant project managers and project managers grow, the numbers of women in leadership within our industry will continue to grow as well. We need to encourage and mentor those who are rising through the ranks and foster an environment supporting and recognizing the unique talents that women bring to the industry.

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