In his more than 30 years with Blair Construction, superintendent Jesse Pruitt has worked on more projects than he can remember. But when asked his favorite, he doesn’t hesitate to answer.
“Building Mr. and Mrs. Blair’s house was really a compliment to me,” he said. “Mr. Blair owns our company, and he could have had anyone build his house. But he came to me during a house build and asked me how I felt about building his house. I took that as a great compliment, knowing the man could get anyone else to do it, and he asked me.”
The trust Blair Construction owner Fred Blair placed in Pruitt to build his home has been something Pruitt has sown throughout his decades-long career with the 110-year-old company. After joining the Blair team in 1989 as a laborer, he has climbed the ranks to his current position of superintendent – a role he has held for more than 15 years and one whose responsibilities include general project management and onsite supervision of subcontractors.
During his time at Blair, Pruitt has also made it his goal to learn every trade skill necessary for the job, from his early days setting door frames to his self-driven proficiency in electrical, mechanical, plumbing, and more.
“I came from a factory environment and had a limited amount of construction knowledge when I came to Blair,” Pruitt said. “I went to work for a great superintendent, Roger Giles. He guided me, tucked me under his wing, and I tried to learn everything I could about every trade I could.”
That unending pursuit of knowledge and skill stems from a passion Pruitt has for learning. Says Blair Construction President Tim Clark, it’s something the company has fostered – and benefited from – during a career that spans nearly one third of the company’s lifespan.
“Jesse embodies so many of the values that Blair Construction holds dear,” Clark said. “If there were enough hours in the day, he could probably build everything by himself. Thankfully, we have a full team of professionals so he doesn’t have to do that, but in addition to his knowledge and skill set, just having somebody with that kind of drive makes everyone around him better.”
Pruitt is now in his 34th year with Blair Construction, and despite the knowledge and success he has gained in that span, he’s still driven to learn more.
“I just love what I do,” Pruitt said. “When I came out of the factory environment, I was working at night and I just loved being outside. I loved learning everything I could learn about as many trades as I could. I enjoy the work I do. My wife says it’s in my blood.”