Paul is pictured alongside a wall grate that he fabricated for the Connolly headquarters.
Paul Blake is a superintendent with Connolly Brothers. Since 2002, he has overseen projects for clients such as Rochester Electronics, Peabody Essex Museum, Harmonic Drive, and many more. Prior, he was a superintendent with G&R Construction, where he oversaw many public construction projects. Originally from Cambridge, Mass., he resides in Marblehead, where he and his wife raised two daughters.
What drew you to construction?
“My father was a machinist for 44 years. He was a technical guy. We always did things like paint and fix our house. He taught some lessons deep – like if the washing machine broke, we'd find the part and put it back together. I started working as a welder in '78, and then I worked with a cabinetmaker in the North End. Eventually, I became a foreman and got my builder's license. I'm a hands-on guy and common sense is everything, so it all just evolved from there."
What has kept you at Connolly Brothers for more than 20 years?
“One of the things that drew me here is the history of this family business. It's just a really good company to work for, and people here are proud to work here, because everything is built as if we were doing it for ourselves. I feel energetic about getting something accomplished when I get up in the morning. I thrive on getting the job done on time and on budget and they support that. There is a camaraderie in the office and a family atmosphere that is so supportive, and that's what keeps me here."
Is there a project that stands out for you as particularly special?
“Eastern Yacht Club is a highlight. We built a new pier house there, which involved drilling into the ledge and installing galvanized pipe and welding beams on top to support the new structure. Then in 2014 they had a fire, and we completed a full gut and renovation of the yacht club in 10 months, which is unheard-of. More recently at EYC, we designed and built a new tennis clubhouse and courts. So, living in Marblehead and having worked on all three of those projects, that's probably my biggest 'monument' at Connolly."
What do you like to do outside of work?
“I enjoy spending time with my wife, kids, and grandkids and my Golden Retriever, Bridget. I also like landscaping and gardening at the house, and I've been flying all around Marblehead and Salem on my electric bike."
What makes a good superintendent?
“Safety first! I'd say a big part of being a superintendent is the ability to maintain a safe working environment for employees and property, doing things correctly, standing behind your work, and being a team player with your contractors. It's all about respect, and we are like brothers in the field. That respect comes back around because you get what you give. That's pretty much my mantra."
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