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CEGE Alumni Speaker Series - Ron Staley

This is a past event.

Friday, March 31, 2023, 12 pm

This is a past event.

Ron Staley, Senior Vice President, The Christman Company - Executive Director of Historic Preservation

The Career Challenge Building: Saving Michigan Central Station


Engineers are commonly tasked with solving design issues with new buildings.    Taking an existing building, understanding its original period design, and modifying it for contemporary use offers more engineering challenges.   How do you take one of the state’s largest historic buildings, abandoned for 30 years and left exposed to the elements, stabilize it, and then bring it back to life?  Selling 35-years of experience in high profile historic preservation work was the key to earning Ford Motor Company’s trust to provide construction management services to their $322M restoration of Detroit’s historic Michigan Central Station.  Share the lessons learned in 40-years of construction which allowed a MTU grad to sell and lead such a monumental project.     


Ron Staley is Senior Vice President and Executive Director of Historic Preservation  of Michigan based The Christman Company. Ron joined The Christman Company in 1984 as an estimator and later gained experience as a project engineer and project manager on various types of projects. Promoted to vice president in 1990 and senior vice president in 2008, he brings to all of his projects a strong background in management systems, understanding of early project planning, pre-construction and design services, and successful construction delivery. In 1992, Ron founded The Christman Company’s Historic Preservation Group and has led it to one of national prominence. His leadership includes directing multiple highly visible historic preservation projects to national and statewide awards for teamwork, unique delivery methods, and quality. Ron’s historic work includes all levels from true museum detail to adaptive reuse and tax act projects. His project experience includes national landmarks and sites from state Capitols to vaudeville theaters to the world’s largest stove.

Ron established a new branch office specializing in historic preservation work in Washington DC in 2004 and then returned to Michigan and assumed leadership of a new Detroit office in 2014. 
In 2008, Governor Granholm named Ron to the State of Michigan’s Historic Preservation Review Board. In 2000, he was honored by AIA Michigan as an Honorary Affiliate Member and in 2005 was honored as a Fellow with the Association for Preservation Technology International (APT). In 2017 Michigan Tech’s College of Business recognized Ron in the  Academy of Business.  The Wayne State University Mike Illitch School of Business honored Ron with Business Executive of the Year in 2020. 

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