John E. Nobles

The CII Executive Committee has selected John E. Nobles as the eleventh recipient of the Richard L. Tucker Leadership & Service Award.

Since the early years of CII, John Nobles has demonstrated a passion for leadership and a commitment to service through his involvement on the CII Board of Advisors (1994–99), Executive Committee (1995–98), and the Strategic Planning Committee (1996–99). John also served as CII Chair in 1997. More recently, he received the CII 2009 Outstanding Service Award. After attending his first CII event in the late 1980s, John knew that he wanted to help CII grow. He immediately began encouraging his organization, as well as owners and other contractors, to actively participate in CII. His enthusiasm was contagious. He convinced his employers at Black & Veatch to join and, when he moved to Burns & McDonnell in 2000, getting the firm to join was one of his first orders of business. In spite of the company’s initial resistance, it did join and went on to become one of the Institute’s leading members.

When asked, his employees at Burns & McDonnell describe him as a visionary leader, a patient manager, and a supportive mentor, and they link these virtues to his CII involvement. They understand that his implementation of CII principles and best practices—be it for safety, benchmarking, or knowledge transfer—benefits them. For example, his commitment to safety has been key to establishing Burns & McDonnell as a first-quartile safety performer among the CII membership, and it earned the company a spot among FORTUNE magazine’s “Top 100 Places to Work” in 2012, 2013, and 2014. Beyond these immediate benefits, Nobles’ employees also understand from his example how much they have to gain from their own CII involvement. Indeed, John Nobles is a role model for CII advocacy and for the kind of mentorship that enables the next generations to thrive. And, they rightly view his leadership as crucial to the continued prosperity of the industry.

John is currently the President of Burns & McDonnell’s Process Industrial Group. He is also a charter member of the National Academy of Construction (since 1999). John sits on the Executive Board of Directors of the Engineering and Construction Contracting Association, on the Georgia Tech School of Chemical Engineering Advisory Board, and on the Kansas City Ballet Board of Directors. He was named to the Georgia Tech Academy of Distinguished Alumni, and is a member of the Campaign Advisory Council for the Center for America, a non-profit organization promoting free enterprise. He received his bachelor’s degree in chemical engineering in 1974 from Georgia Tech.