BIG RAPIDS - The Michigan Construction Hall of Fame will have four new construction industry professionals inducted during an Oct. 18 banquet and ceremony in Ferris State University's Granger Center for Construction and HVACR.
This year's inductees receiving the Distinguished Constructor Award are John T. Adamo Sr. of Sterling Heights, the late H. Fred Campbell of West Bloomfield, Lee Kitson of Big Rapids and Robert A. Martin of Grosse Pointe Woods.
John T. Adamo Sr. began his career in the construction industry in the early 1960s with his family's company, Jim Adamo & Sons. After his father's retirement, he was at the helm of the company, armed with only his business acumen, a current builder's license and newly acquired wrecking license. Adamo quickly developed a reputation of being not only reliable and dependable, but also an honest businessman who could be trusted to perform his work on a handshake. This earned him repeat business as he quickly made a name for himself and his company in the demolition industry, becoming one of the top 10 demolition contractors in the United States by the early 1970s.
H. Fred Campbell began his career in the construction industry as an architectural draftsman for the former Grant Construction Company. In 1928, after a few years of working for others, he decided it was time to venture out on his own and start his own company - Campbell Construction Co. Campbell's local construction projects included the Detroit Professional Plaza, the Robins Professional Park in Troy, MichCon's Melvindale Training Center, the Coca-Cola bottling plant in Detroit, and assembly, manufacturing and office facilities for the General Motors, Chrysler and Ford. After officially retiring in 1994 and still active at the age of 100, Campbell continued to be a quintessential inventor and design pioneer. He developed more than two dozen construction patents during his tenure, from a timber beam during World War I when steel was in short supply, to a unique building in suspension and floatation system in 2002-03.
For more than 35 years, Lee Kitson has been helping home buyers in west Michigan build the home of their dreams. LeeKitson Homes is a multigenerational, family-owned and operated custom building company. Well-known for quality and service, they are also known for their green building practices. Recognized for exceptional achievement for his innovation and contributions to building green, Kitson is at the forefront of the emerging green market trend because of the consideration the company gives toward environmental impacts at each stage of the building process. He consistently meets the criteria for rising energy costs and the need to conserve resources by making "smart" construction choices. He embraces and pioneers building practices that result in energy-efficient, healthier and environmentally sustainable buildings. And through his hard work, determination and example, he promotes credible and practical green building approaches for residential construction.
Robert A. Martin joined his father's company, FH Martin Constructors - a well-respected general contractor since 1919 - as vice president in 1961, becoming president of the company in 1974. Successfully leading the company for 21 years, Martin was an active member of the Associated General Contractors of America, both at the local and national level. He was instrumental in starting AGC's Political Action Committee in Michigan and held numerous leadership positions including president of the Greater Detroit AGC in 1974. Martin also was active in the Detroit Chapter in promoting construction education and workforce development. On the national level, Martin has served as a board member, chairman of the Municipal Utilities division, executive committee member and chairman of several committees of the AGC of America.
The hall's previous inductees include first-year honorees the late Thomas E. Dailey of Southfield, John Marshall Harlan of Southfield and the late Albert A. White of Lansing; second-year honorees Alton L. Granger of Lansing, the late Herman Gundlach of Houghton, Robert R. Jones of Bloomfield Hills and O.L. "Ozzie" Pfaffmann of Rochester; third-year honorees the late Harry L. “Bud” Conrad Jr. of Lansing, and William A. Hendrick of Saginaw; and fourth-year honorees the late Leon P. Clark of Lansing, Benjamin C. Maibach III of Southfield, the late Ralph J. Stephenson of Mt. Pleasant, the late Sheldon G. Hayes of Southfield and the late Sheldon W. Hayes, formerly of Bloomfield Hills and later of DeLand, Fla.
Michigan Construction Hall of Fame Distinguished Constructor Award recipients are selected by a committee of professionals representing the Associated Builders and Contractors, Associated General Contractors of America, Construction Association of Michigan, Michigan Infrastructure and Transportation Association, Michigan Association of Home Builders and Ferris State University Construction Technology and Management department.
Selection criteria include achievement in technical, managerial and leadership areas, state or national prominence as a result of industry or community activities, and service to the profession and community.
The Michigan Construction Hall of Fame serves as a permanent place for members of the construction industry to recognize and appreciate the endeavors of leaders of the Michigan construction industry. Off-campus visitors can access the Michigan Construction Hall of Fame at www.ferris.edu/mchof. Recipients of the Distinguished Constructor Award and their stories are featured on this Web site.
This event is open to the public through sponsorship. Further information is available by calling Karen Verrill with Ferris State University's College of Technology at (231) 591-2895.