A Life-Changing Construction Career

Chris Reese, labor foreman, didn’t have an easy start. Born and raised in Chicago, he was involved in gang life and had two kids by the time he was 17.

“I wanted a better life for my family,” says Chris. “So, I decided to move to Minnesota and join a program that helps underprivileged people find jobs. That’s where I got hooked up with PCL.”

Chris started as a labor apprentice and worked his way up to his current position. “The sky was the limit because I had nothing to lose,” explains Chris. “I’d seen the worst of life, so PCL was a big deal for me and my family – I took full advantage.”

For Chris, getting into the trades was a life-changing opportunity. Now he’s paying it forward by speaking to high-school students and encouraging them to consider working in the trades. “I’ll never forget where I came from. Giving back like this, it’s everything to me,” he says. “These programs give great people a chance to work for great companies. You’re judged on who you are and your character now, not on your past.”

Chris says he’s stayed with PCL for more than 20 years, including work in the Minneapolis and Seattle offices, because it’s such a big part of his life. “I’m always growing, and PCL’s given me countless opportunities to do that.”​​​
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