Employee Spotlight: David Cunningham

“What I like the most about my job is the technical part of the work—the engineering part—I like working with equipment and building systems. I never would’ve envisioned being a manager of anything when I started here, so being advanced into that role was definitely an expansion of my capabilities. I know a lot more now than I ever did about client development, estimating the work and providing quality control.”

–David Cunningham, Commissioning Services Division Manager

Interview:

What do you do?
I’m the Commissioning Division Manager, so not only manager, but business development for commissioning work falls into the scope of what I do. So there’s getting the work, administering the work, and also the personnel aspect like evaluations, as well as leading projects as a commissioning authority.

How long have you been with NWESI?
I’ve been here since 1996 so about 24 years now.

Over those years were there any developments that you enjoyed see happen?
I think expanding the services we’ve provided, and the customer base. When I started here the high-tech boom in the Portland area was going on—mid-90s—and all of our work was in part to meet the demands of those sort of facilities. The services our company was providing were focused on cleanrooms and cleanroom certifications, so there wasn’t a big opportunity to do a lot of HVAC commercial or industrial. It was nice to be able to get out of those [cleanrooms] even though it was a downturn in semi-conductor stuff around here; it allowed us to expand into other markets. We were in healthcare, in schools and that sort of thing before—now we do a lot more of those—so it was nice to get some more experiences—something different than from cleanrooms.

Do you have a favorite part of your job?
I think what I like the most about my job is the technical part of the work—the engineering part—I am a trained engineer after all, even if that’s not necessarily what a lot of my time is spent working on. I like working with equipment and building systems, and I interact with people but that isn’t really where I want to be the entire time even though it’s a necessary part of the job for everybody here.