December 17, 2018, Builder in the Spotlight

Builder in the Spotlight: Gary Middleton

Over forty years in construction for Gary Middleton, and yet he stays challenged and excited for each new job. What keeps him going? The sense of accomplishment shared by his entire division when a job is executed perfectly.

Gary Middleton started his career in 1974 as Carpenter’s Helper. He then grew his skills and became a Carpenter, Millwork Installer, Millwork Install Foreman, Millwork Shop Foreman, to finally his current position of Millwork Division Manager, a title he has held since 1987.  He has seen his role transition from the hand-on labor, to providing oversite and direction to ensure the work gets done.  For over 30 years, he’s continually been responsible for around 30 employees. When it comes to managing people, Gary says “it can be difficult, because there’s 30 different personalities all trying to mesh”. But, over the years Gary’s learned the value of everyone’s differences, and how to use each persons’ strengths to reach their goals.

While it’s hard to pick a favorite construction project in his career, Gary notes that Millwork has completed numerous jobs for the New Orleans Saints over the years, but a few years back, when Woodward renovated the Lobby/Ticket office/Museum area at the Training Facility was a particularly noteworthy job.  “We built all of the display cases for the museum that contained Saints memorabilia over the years.  We also built the display case that contains the Lombardi Trophy that they won after winning the Super bowl. Also included in our work was a really nice Reception desk and Ticket Stations. Another item that we did at the time was build a 16′ Conference table for Mr. Benson that had the Saints & Pelican logo’s in-laid into the table.”

When it comes to Woodward’s core values; Gary says Determination is the one that stands out about our culture. “Woodward coaches our personnel to strive to do things correctly the first time.”