Member Feature: a conversation with Michael Bruss, Bruss Project Management
Please welcome one of our newest members, Michael Bruss, of Bruss Project Management, based in Concord. Actually, it’s a renewed welcome toMichael, who was a member previously when he ran Bruss Construction. We are delighted to have him join us again and to learn about his current efforts and what brought him to this point.
It’s always interesting to know what brings people to the area if they are not born here—work, people, community- sometimes all three. Michael was born in Wisconsin and studied forestry at the University of Wisconsin. In 1978 Michael moved to NH with his brother and a friend. Michael remembers taking a trip to Canterbury Shaker Village and thinking what a treasure it was to have this historic site so close by. As a furniture and cabinetmaker himself, Michael appreciated the craftsmanship of this community. As we’ve written about in previous conversations—we all seem to have these moments when the stars align and for Michael it was 15 years later when he was asked to work on the Visitor Education Center project.
In 1983 Bruss Construction was created, his brother, James came on board 20 years later. They were a small to medium sized company that focused mainly on institutional, high end residential and medical construction. As a company with as many as 45 employees they were focused on providing a high quality product for their customers, but balanced with that was creating a workplace that was socially responsible. Michael shared that his real passion became projects for non-profits and organizations that were committed to their mission. Some of these projects included: The French wing of the Conservation center, for SPNHF, The Harris Center for Conservation Education, as well as Canterbury Shaker Village. For him the great reward is to have been involved with organizations that affect change.
As he grew professionally, Michael realized that what he enjoyed most was working with owner’s, understanding their perspective and helping to fulfill their vision. This led him to shift gears and start Bruss Project Management in 2014. Every project has its own set of challenges, its own unique cast of characters and its own opportunities for success or failure. A key role of the Construction Project Management Consultant is to provide a positive influence on the dynamic tension that is inherent in undertakings involving multiple stakeholders. The Consultant must work with the Design Team, Owner and the various project stakeholders to identify the challenges, facilitate solutions, and maintain focus on the project objectives.
While not doing the actual building himself, Michael works with owners, designs and vendors to bring a project to life. He works as a sole proprietor now, which is a conscious design, which allows him to pursue work of interest to him. Recent projects include working with non-profits, a Buddhist retreat center, a Waldorf school, a historic town hall. Michael’s passion and drive focuses on sustainability and resilience in the built environment. He has worked extensively on preservation and adaptive reuse projects respecting our architectural heritage and recognizing that the best way to preserve a building is to make it relevant in the 21st century.
Through his work, Michael is committed to reducing the impact on the environment and climate change through responsible solutions in the build environment. He enjoys working with organizations to understand what this means to them and finds that it is often more complex than meets the eye which keeps things interesting and challenging.
Michael welcomes the chance to get to know his fellow NHBSR members. He can be reached via email at firstname.lastname@example.org or via phone at 603- 856-8218 (office), 603-344-1552 (cell).