The recently elected CSI Board of Directors began their term July 1. Here, in their own words, they discuss their history with the association, how it has benefited their professional experience, and the immediate and long-term opportunities they see for CSI in the years to come.
Meet Director at Large Jonnie Cox
Jonnie Cox, FCSI
Architect / Portfolio Project Manager
Tennessee Valley Authority
How did you first become involved with CSI, and how has that helped your professional experience grow?
I first became involved with CSI back as a student at the University of Tennessee. At that time, the university had different tracks of study in the College of Architecture. I was in the Construction Management & Production track, which focused on contract documents and construction administration. One of my professors happened to be a Fellow of the Institute and was the advisor for the CSI student chapter. Because of him, I became involved with the student chapter and a believer in the mission of CSI.
Early in my career, CSI helped me with the technical side of preparing specifications and construction documents. However, it wasn’t long before the many other benefits of CSI became apparent. The diversified membership and the collaboration between architects, contractors, suppliers, and others made it unique among construction industry organizations. When I was transferred to another city early in my career, the first placed I turned for information about the local construction industry was the local CSI chapter. Throughout my career of evolving job responsibilities from architect to project manager to project portfolio manager, CSI has been the constant. Whether I was producing contract documents or serving as the building owner’s rep, CSI has always been relevant to my work regardless of my position.
What are the top opportunities you see for CSI?
As construction projects become increasingly complex and expensive, I think providing standards and state of the art tools that enhance project organization and collaboration are a continued opportunity for CSI.
I believe that CSI can increase its visibility and improve the education of project teams through the integration of a strong online and in-person networking strategy.
Do you have a favorite project, or work experience you would like to share?
Having spent my entire career at the Tennessee Valley Authority, most all of the projects I have done are more industrial in nature than commercial. My favorite projects have been those that involved the renovation of the dam facilities that were built in the 1930s and 1940s. That’s why I take no offense when people call me a dam architect.