We are pleased to announce Andy Korb was honored as one of the 2020 Newsmakers by The Daily Reporter. Join us in congratulating him on being recognized as Team Lead of the Year.
From forts and furniture to helping with a basement remodel, Andy was always building things growing up. After learning about the field of architecture from a family friend and spending a day in his home studio, Andy was hooked. He didn’t even entertain other ideas; he wanted to be an architect.
Before starting his freshman year in the architecture program at UW-Milwaukee, he took advantage of an opportunity to continue his childhood passion for building things at a camp in northern Wisconsin—Fort Wilderness. Andy spent the entire year working at the camp doing construction and building maintenance. In fact, Andy has served the camp in numerous roles—from a counselor to a lifeguard. He met his wife at Fort Wilderness, continues to take his family there, and currently serves on the building facilities committee.
After taking the gap year, Andy immersed himself in the world of architecture. While he pursued his architectural degree at UWM, he began working for Stephen Perry Smith Architects. Upon graduating, he continued with the firm. He spent 12 years there and advanced into a project management position, leading many of the firm’s projects.
In the summer of 1998, he took a sabbatical and once again returned to Fort Wilderness. Andy and his wife moved to the camp property, and he designed cabins and other structures while Fort Wilderness was embarking on a fundraising campaign. From design and construction drawings to city submissions and approvals, he was supporting the future of the camp with his project management expertise.
Andy’s time with Stephen Perry Smith gave him tremendous experience with developer speculative work, but in 2008 an opportunity with AG Architecture presented a welcomed opportunity. AG’s focus on a sense of community and senior living projects across the country gave Andy the chance to work more closely with end users.
“I like knowing there is meaning behind every line that is drawn and every decision that is made—being a part of meaningful work that impacts lives.” – Andy Korb
In addition to his passion for the project work, Andy also enjoys the opportunity to fulfill his desire to teach. From jumping in to help new employees feel at ease to putting systems in place to support professional development, Andy is a true team player. Due to his success as a project manager, he was promoted to Team Lead. He relishes the opportunity to mentor his team and fellow employees while serving clients and supporting the growth of the firm—he has been with AG for 12 years.
“Andy is an extremely knowledgeable architect, a valuable resource, an excellent teacher and great guy. Andy puts the client first—always! He works hard to make sure clients receive the best results. Andy also looks out for his team. He does not take the fact that he is a Team Lead lightly. He is constantly pushing me to be more and do more. He truly wants to see me succeed at what I am doing. He believes in me.” — Dave Manke | AG Architecture
Andy was instrumental in creating a series of workshops to help formalize many of AG’s processes and procedures. He also initiated a regularly scheduled Project Management Challenges meeting to provide team members with a platform for open dialogue. These meetings bring team members at different experience levels together to share information and lessons learned. It fosters collaborative problem solving. Andy believes this is one of the best collaboration platforms the firm offers. Since COVID, this meeting has continued via Microsoft Teams.
As Team Lead for many of AG’s Florida projects, Andy transitioned from an intense pre-COVID monthly travel schedule to successfully running projects remotely. He has helped his team, clients and colleagues take advantage of technology in order to maintain the certainty and predictability AG is known for throughout the construction administration process.
“Andy and the AG team are a pleasure to work with. My appreciation stems from the many obstacles and challenges he was faced with in our projects and how well they overcame them.”
— Kevin Ahmadi (client) | Gulf Coast Village in Cape Coral, FL
Whether working with team members or virtually walking job sites, Andy believes the ability to share screens and have access to drawings on the computer while seeing field issues via video has provided some new levels of efficiency and effective communication. These improvements in remote project management and team leadership are continuing to be utilized as some travel is being reintroduced into his monthly schedule. The internal use of Microsoft Teams has allowed him to stay well connected with his team while the firm works remotely. His team members are able to easily see his availability and reach out with impromptu questions. It also gives him the ability to screen share and jump in to help with any challenges, such as drawing issues or even computer problems.
“Andy leads people the way he manages projects, he takes great care with every interaction ensuring clear understanding and correct implementation. He always makes time to explain what the job is, why it’s important, and how it fits into the project as a whole. I have learned so much as he walks me through his thought process. He consistently provides me with new assignments that challenge me to perform, educates me in the building process, and exposes me to a range of exciting new experiences.” — Jonathan Spielmann | AG Architecture
From his childhood passion to his chosen profession, architecture and construction have provided Andy a way to serve and support others. Whether championing the future of Fort Wilderness, impacting the lives of senior living residents or encouraging the growth and development of his team, Andy is a hard-working, team-oriented professional who truly cares about his work and the people he works with. That is what makes him a noteworthy Team Lead.