Hi, I'm Brian
WHERE I'M FROM
I grew up in the Deep South, in a town called Albany, Georgia, about the size of Charlottesville. My studies and career have led me from Georgia to Southern California and then to Charlottesville. We’ve been proud to call Central Virginia home for seventeen years.
A WINDING CAREER
Though I trained originally as an engineer, I’ve spent most of my career managing projects. Project managers put people, resources, and ideas together to get things done. I know how to dive into complex situations and get up to speed quickly. I understand the importance of engaging different voices and finding common ground. I also know when to make decisions and move forward.
Much of what I know I learned from time spent with the women and men who make the world go round: from from process engineers to papermakers, and from academic philosophers to pipe welders.
I am naturally curious. I want answers to the Big Questions. I want my beliefs to fit reality. To that end, in my late twenties I jettisoned a career in industry to return to school. That leap brought me to the University of Virginia and Charlottesville in 2004.
I set out to study Philosophy. Along the way I gained a deep appreciation for the Humanities in general. The Humanities have much to teach us: They reveal our past history, illuminate our present contradictions, and give guidance toward a future life together.
Like so many, we came to Charlottesville because of the University but stayed because of the City itself and its people. My wife, Flynn, and I have raised our three kids -- John Russell, Quincy, Florence -- here. They are proud graduates of Charlottesville High School and PVCC.
We have built strong connections with church and community. I’ve served on several Boards and have advanced progressive values through serving with the Charlottesville Democratic Party.
I welcome the opportunity to talk. If you’d like to chat by phone or virtually, please let me know. Thank you!
Education & Work
Every Opportunity is a
I studied mechanical engineering at Georgia Tech (1994). I am a registered Professional Engineer and hold Project Management and Facilities Management professional credentials. My graduate degrees are in theology (Biola University, 2004) and philosophy (UVA, 2012).
My first job was in consumer products manufacturing with Procter & Gamble. P&G taught me how world-class companies operate. The jobs I held during graduate school showed me how smaller businesses operate. Since 2004, I have been proud to work for Facilities Management at the University.
We each learn so much from our training and work, don’t we? Engineering gave me the skills to understand how complicated systems -- from manufacturing plants to MRI facilities -- work. I learned how to break down large, complex problems into smaller, more manageable ones. That lets me develop solutions, brick-by-brick, to resolve them.
As a project manager, I have learned the art of "getting things done." That’s straightforward once you realize that all projects, big or small, comprise a set of interrelated tasks, building to the desired outcome. I’ve led projects like improving the efficiency of manufacturing processes; renovating laboratories, clinics, offices, and classrooms; and constructing spaces for high-end scientific and medical equipment. Project managers know how to bring people, resources, and ideas together to get things done. They understand how money, time, and stakeholders shape what can be achieved.
My education in -- and love for -- the Humanities animates me. The Humanities reveal human beings in all our beautiful messiness. They remind us that, in the end, it’s all about people. Whatever we do -- as individuals or civic leaders -- must be with the goal of helping people thrive and their communities flourish.