CUMBERLAND — Before settling on Cobb for its new Atlanta office, JE Dunn Construction scouted about 30 properties throughout the metro area. In the end, the decision to relocate from Mount Vernon Highway to Cumberland Parkway came down to which space offered the best growth opportunity.
Along with serving as JE Dunn’s Atlanta base, the office will be the headquarters for the company’s East Region. Opened in 2000, the East Region serves the Augusta, Savannah, Charlotte and Nashville markets.
Founded in 1924 in Kansas City, the family- and employee-owned company is one of the largest general building contractors in the United States, providing construction management and self-perform services through 20 offices nationwide.
East Region President Dan Kaufman said the Cumberland location not only fits JE Dunn’s current needs here, but also will accommodate future growth plans. “The building’s visibility from I-285 provides a branding opportunity that’s huge for us and was certainly a factor,” he said. “The Cumberland CID was significant. I love the strategic planning I see coming together [in Cobb] – particularly the investment in transportation, recreation and beautification.”
JE Dunn already is preparing the Cumberland facility for vertical expansion within the next five years. Kaufman said the company plans to add approximately 100 people (the Atlanta team currently has 191).
JE Dunn’s presence in the local business community will be a welcome addition to the Cobb area. Companywide, JE Dunn gives 10 percent of its pretax profit annually to a wide range of charities. In 2013, it supported more than 300 philanthropies. Over the years, JE Dunn has promoted education for the National Arthritis Foundation, built basketball courts for underprivileged children, hosted 5K runs to raise money for children of incarcerated parents to attend summer camp, and provided scholarships for local teachers to continue to learn creative and innovative teaching concepts.
“Our people are all about contributing hands-on to the success of the communities in which we live, work and play,” said business development professional and Marietta resident Wendy Brantley. “It reflects our ownership culture and our commitment to a higher purpose.”
One of its signature initiatives is the Minority Contractor Business Development Program (MCBD), which has been active in Atlanta since 2011. The program, which to date has had some 29 businesses participate in the metro area, helps JE Dunn build relationships with minority owned and women-owned companies in construction-related fields. Participants are competitively selected to participate, free of charge, in a 16-month training program that focuses on basic management skills, and helps expand their capacity to build industry relationships.
“We were not always a national company,” said East Region diversity manager and Cobb resident Cherelle Cortez. “We understand the unique challenges of small businesses and the importance of their establishing relationships within our industry. The program is consistent with our emphasis on community investment and with our commitment to employing a diverse workforce and building strong businesses with whom we might later partner and subcontract.”
Overall, the JE Dunn will continue to build its portfolio in the East Region, which focuses on projects such as healthcare, K-12, higher education, mission critical, aviation, multi-family and corporate clients.
“These are the markets that are keeping us in the ‘haves’ category rather than among the ‘have-nots,’” said executive VP and Marietta resident Mike Bartlett. “Overall, the residential market is the most active right now. But our approach is to concentrate on balancing our workload and gearing more toward ones that will remain strong for years to come, such as healthcare. You have to invest in it to be good at it. Our use of technology, our integrated systems and the training of our people allow us to compete in this market at a high level.”
JE Dunn Construction
800 Mount Vernon Highway NE
Suite 800Atlanta, GA 30328
Future address: 2555 Cumberland Parkway, Atlanta, GA 30339
Type of construction work: General contracting and construction management services for market sectors outlined above
No. of Employees (overall, and then in Cobb location): 2,200 companywide, 191 in Atlanta
No. of office locations and where: 20 offices over four regions: East, Midwest, West and South Central
Contact info: Dan Kaufman, East Region President, 678-781-2567
Web URL: www.jedunn.com
2013 Revenue: $2.1 billion companywide, $200 million in Atlanta