Beacon News

Beacon Corporate Meeting Highlights & Photos

Every December, Beacon's team members meet for the company's annual Corporate Meeting and Holiday Dinner. This is a great opportunity for our team members to share lessons learned in the past year, highlights of various completed and ongoing projects, information about new technologies, and tips for dealing with difficult situations and projects. As part of the professional development aspect of the corporate meeting, Beacon invites industry experts to participate in a focused panel discussion. Below are some highlights from this year's meeting. Special thanks go to Beacon's Michelle Punch, Executive Assistant to Dennis O'Neill. Michelle did a wonderful job of planning this year's meeting, which was one the best we have ever had.

Beacon's annual corporate get-together kicked off on Thursday evening, December 15th with some delicious food and drinks at Vera's Union Square (Somerville, MA), followed by an unforgettable evening of "axe throwing" at Urban Axes (see photos here). If you have not had the opportunity try axe throwing, it's way more fun than any of us expected. Beacon Project Manager Olan Kenneally was the winner of our friendly competition, but the competition was close. Needless to say, we had many laughs and learned some great zombie-apocalypse survival skills!

Beacon's annual company-wide meeting was held on Friday December 16th at the Row Hotel, Assembly Square (Somerville, MA). The meeting kicked off with a fun and ingenius party game invented by Beacon Project Engineer Marcus Lehner entitled "Drawing Animals Badly." Dennis O'Neill then welcomed the meeting attendees and gave a "year in review" presentation, supported by Beacon's Accounting Manager, Janet Mosey. Following a review of Beacon's 2023 company-wide goals by Dennis O'Neill, Beacon VPs Jim Bruno, John Yeung, and Kieran O'Connor went over some of the specific 2022 achievements and 2023 goals for Beacon's Medford, MA, New York City, and Florida offices.

Jim Bruno gave a great "State of the Industry" presentation, focusing on the year in review (and 2023 projections) for the U.S. Construction industry and possible impacts on the Surety Claims industry. Next, John Yeung and Beacon Assistant Project Manager Myat Cyn gave a presentation entitled "Post-Covid Construction: What has changed?" focusing on how the industry has changed following (and as a result of) the global Covid-19 pandemic. Beacon Project Engineer Marcus Lehner gave a great presentation titled "Trust Your Gut" about lessons learned during a public library project. In particular, the presentation focused on the importance of doing proper asbestos testing (and abatement, as necessary), during the renovation of aging facilities. Beacon Project Engineer Andrew Lem finished up the staff presentations with a great review of "Reality Capture Software for the Construction Industry." Andrew's presentation provided a fascinating overview of how rapidly evolving 3-D image capture cameras and software are already being used to "map out" and monitor progress at construction sites.

After lunch, Beacon held a 90-minute panel discussion which included three invited Surety Industry experts:

  • Jennifer Whritenour, Intact Insurance Specialty Solution
  • Stuart Jones, Travelers
  • Jonathan Burwood, Esq., Watt, Tieder, Hoffar & Fitzgerald LLP

Participating on the panel from Beacon's team were Dennis O'Neill (moderator), Beacon VP Kieran O'Connor, and Elizabeth Paquet (Construction Management & Surety Consultant). The title of the panel discussion was "Picking Up The Pieces." The discussion focused on best practices followed by Surety companies (and their construction consultants) before and during the default of the principal (such as a General Contractor or subcontractor) named under the Surety Bond. The discussion lasted more than 90 minutes and provided many interesting insights and real-world examples of how projects can "go wrong" and best practices for "turning projects around" following a default, while also mitigating financial and legal risks for the Surety. The panel did a fantastic job and discussed many interesting case histories. We are especially thankful to our three invited industry experts (Jennifer, Stuart, and Jonathan) who took time out of their busy schedules to participate on this panel.

Following closing remarks by Dennis O'Neill (and some late afternoon Emails and work), our team enjoyed a great Beacon Holiday Party at River Bar in Somerville, MA. It was a wonderful evening and a great way to kick off the holiday season, with great food, good company, live music, some singing, a little dancing, and much laughter.

Click on the "Thumbnail Images" below to see highlight photos from Beacon's annual meeting and holiday party. To View ALL PHOTOs from each event, please use the links below: