Our history

Pepper Construction was founded in 1927 by Stanley F. Pepper, whose original vision has inspired nearly a century of growth. Headquartered in Chicago, Illinois, we were part of the generation that helped build one of the world’s most iconic cities with unparalleled vision for projects such as Sidney & Lois Eskenazi Hospital and Health, Marshall Fields and the Shedd Oceanarium.

From the beginning, we have remained on the forefront of new markets and methods, leading the industry in sustainable, lean and virtual construction technologies.

Now in our third generation of family leadership, we have expanded to serve a number of locations around the country with comprehensive teams in Illinois, Ohio, and Indiana working in advanced and emerging markets such as healthcare, industrial, manufacturing, data centers, retail, hospitality, interiors and education among others.

The values that founded Pepper are the values that help us stand tall amongst our competition today. Our integrity, commitment to quality, and dedication to the relationships we form are the bedrock of our brand. 

Quality & Client Service: Identifying and serving client needs is the only way to grow and prosper.

Honesty & Integrity: Pepper fulfills its commitments. No exceptions.

Safety: A safe workplace remains our first priority.

People: Hire the best people, then provide them with the training and resources to get the job done.

Growth: Pepper is committed to planned, managed growth.

Leadership: Pepper is committed to providing its industry and communities with strong leadership.

A Fair Profit: The result of our commitment to these core values is a fair profit.

Our future

Like with any great idea, we started small, looking for ways to unlock the potential of every team member and partner at Pepper. From new recruits to industry veterans, from management to the men and women in the trenches, Pepper is full of fresh ideas that continuously transform the way we do business. 

So what does Breaking Ground mean for us?

Realizing the boldest of visions
Ambitions are what building is all about. We believe it’s up to us to envision the possibilities and plan ahead for feasibility from day one. At Pepper, we investigate new technologies, evaluate new methodologies, and create innovative solutions in the field to help realize our partners’ boldest visions with a practical approach.

Forming inspiring, personal relationships
A partnership, like a building, is more than the sum of its parts. And both require true collaboration to grow. At Pepper, we take building personally, so we’re always looking for ways to be more responsive. Part of breaking ground is looking after what matters most—our customers and their interests.

Charting new paths for our communities
Every building starts with a solid foundation—its people. We’re deeply connected to the progress of the regions we serve, and we show it through our personal, empathetic approach to doing business. At Pepper, the progress we make in concrete and steel is just as important as the impact we have on the communities we care for.

With these principles guiding our progress, each small step turns into a major impact for our partners and customers. You can see it in the stories we share and the important topics we dig into. And most importantly, you feel it on the jobsite everyday. We’ve always worked this way, because rather than pointing the way to a better future, we’re on that journey together.   

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Financial Strength

Pepper is one of the strongest and most financially sustainable construction companies in the country. We are bonded at nearly $1B and more than capable of standing behind the quality of any work we perform. Our transparent, open book approach makes our financials and project data freely available to our partners.

Part of our strength lies in our partnerships. We prequalify all of our subcontractors to ensure a smooth project for everyone involved. Below is a PDF to walk you through everything you need to know.

When you're ready, you will then submit this information via our online Sub Prequalification Form.

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Industry Recognition

Pepper is consistently featured as one of the nation’s premier construction companies in multiple regions and vertical markets.

We are also ranked in key industry publications:

  • BD+C 46th Largest Contractor Nationwide
  • ENR 72nd Largest Contractor Nationwide
  • ENR 9th Largest Contractor in the Midwest
  • Modern Healthcare 14th Largest Healthcare Construction Manager Nationwide
  • Crain’s Chicago Business 54th Largest Privately Held Company in Illinois
  • Crain’s Chicago Business 5th largest Chicagoland Contractor
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Markets Served

Pepper serves a number of mature and emerging markets, combining our deep expertise and innovative approach to create meaningful solutions. From the work we do on iconic buildings, to innovative solutions that deliver high performing buildings, we’re proud of how we address the needs of our customers at every level, in every market.

  • Commercial
  • Corporate HQ
  • Healthcare
  • Higher Education
  • K-12
  • Hospitality
  • Industrial
  • Institutional
  • Interiors
  • Entertainment
  • Retail
  • Senior Living
  • Mission Critical/Data Centers

Leadership

At Pepper, we create leaders at every level and generate momentum in every market we serve. We do that by rewarding new thinking and respecting the long-standing values that have made our company unique for generations. 

  • Corporate Officers
  • Presidents

Dave Pepper

Chairman, Pepper Construction Group

As our chairman, Dave is responsible for overseeing the overall success of the company. His leadership and active involvement in the company have been key to Pepper’s success and growth. Association and service in many local community and industry organizations point to his care for the industry and those served by his field. Specifically, Dave is currently the president of the AGC Education and Research Foundation (a nonprofit charitable organization dedicated to improving the science of construction) and has been a member of the Associated General Contractors Supervisory Training Committee. Dave holds a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering from Iowa State University.

Stan Pepper

Chairman and CEO, The Pepper Companies

As chairman and chief executive officer of The Pepper Companies, Stan leads the overall strategy and management of the company and its resources. Stan began his career in 1976 working for Pepper Construction, learning the general contracting business from the ground up for 27 years, and eventually serving as CEO. He then spent 12 years working in a variety of strategic leadership positions in the construction industry – from private equity and consulting to software development and sustainable products before returning to lead The Pepper Companies.

A leading voice in the industry for innovation, Stan has served as Director of The Peoples Bank of Arlington Heights since 1999 and as an Advisory Board Member for Aldridge Electric since 2008. Stan holds a bachelor’s of administration in business from Monmouth College.

Chris Averill

Chief Operating Officer

In his role as COO, Chris provides overall leadership of operational and financial leadership across the company.  Chris joined Pepper in 2015 as the Chief Financial Officer and Executive Vice President. Prior to joining Pepper, Chris was an accomplished Chief Financial Officer with an extensive background in global financial and business management.

Tim Sullivan

Vice President and General Counsel

Tim serves as Pepper’s in-house counsel. With more than 20 years of experience in the construction industry, including work in project design, construction management, and post-construction dispute resolution, Tim crafts his in-depth and well-rounded perspective for his advisory role. Tim earned his bachelor of science in civil engineering from West Point, and his law degree from Northwestern University. A member of the Illinois bar, Tim is also a licensed professional engineer in several states.

Howie Piersma

Vice President, Information Technology

As vice president of information technology for Pepper Construction Group, Howie directs and manages IT plans, schedules, policies, and programs for the organization’s infrastructure, network communications, and IT support. His expertise makes him a sought-after expert for industry conferences and events.

 

Ken Egidi

President and CEO, Pepper Illinois

As president and CEO, Ken is responsible for setting Pepper Construction Company’s mission and strategic vision and allocating the company’s resources to meet those goals. Ken provides strategic oversight and support for every area of the company, making sure Pepper’s team has the right opportunities and tools in place to excel. One such tool is our Job Control System, a proprietary project management system that Ken was instrumental in developing. Ken serves his community as treasurer on the board of directors for the Builder’s Association; as a member of the Associated General Contractors of America, American Contractors Insurance Group, and Executive’s Club of Chicago; and as an active supporter of the Boy Scouts of America. Chicago Technical College is Ken’s alma mater, where he earned a bachelor’s degree in building construction and engineering technology.

Mike McCann

President, Pepper Indiana

Mike McCann joined Pepper Construction in 1980 as a project manager until he was appointed vice president of operations for Pepper Indiana in 1996. In 2013 he was promoted to his current position as president. In this role Mike is responsible for integrating our overall vision and strategy into day-to-day processes, including safety and field operations. He works closely with the senior management team and the other offices to ensure Pepper Indiana maintains and grows its position as a leader in Indiana. Mike holds a Bachelor of Science in Construction Engineering from Bradley University.

Mike is a leader in the community, where he serves as president of the Indiana Construction Association board of directors, board member of the Indiana Construction Roundtable and member of the University of Indianapolis Real Estate Development & Construction advisory board, United Way of Central Indiana capital project funds committee and Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis (IUPUI) Construction Engineering Management Technology advisory board. He serves as a mentor for both the Indiana Construction Roundtable diversity initiative and the Starfish Initiative program. Mike is also a member of the International Council of Shopping Centers and the Lean Construction Institute. He previously served as a board member for the Coalition for Construction Safety (CCS) and as an adjunct professor at IUPUI.

Paul Francois

President, Pepper Ohio

Paul is responsible for overseeing the financial and operational success of the company. After earning his Bachelor of Science in Construction Engineering from Iowa State University, Paul gained a broad range of construction experience, from healthcare to industrial projects, with specialization in commercial interior and institutional projects.

Paul is active in industry organizations, currently serving as a board member and the chair of the facilities committee for Junior Achievement of Central Ohio and as an Industry Advisory Council board member at Iowa State University. A strong advocate for community involvement, Paul invests his time with several central Ohio charities and educational programs, including the Mid-Ohio Food Bank, Habitat for Humanity, Junior Achievement, the Little Miami River Clean-Up and numerous others.

James Nissen

President, Pepper Environmental Technologies

As president of Pepper Environmental Technologies, Jim leads our sustainable remediation team in safeguarding our clients from the growing consequences and liabilities associated with environmental issues. This group operates under a standalone company, Pepper Environmental Technologies, which provides a single source for answers and solutions to our client’s environmental waste management needs. In addition to leading PET as President, Jim serves as Executive Vice President of Pepper Illinois. He brings more than 33 years of broad construction expertise to the role and holds a bachelor of science in construction engineering from Iowa State University, an MBA from Northern Illinois University.  Jim is a member of the American Institute of Constructors (AIC), is a Certified Professional Constructor as well as a LEED AP  BD+C. He currently serves as National Director on the AIC board of directors.