John Cavanagh was Vice Chairman of AMEC Construction Management, Inc. and was President and COO of Morse Diesel International, Inc. In the course of his 45-year career, Mr. Cavanagh has managed more than $7 billion worth of construction in virtually every conceivable market, from commercial to residential properties, hotels to health facilities, airports to correctional institutions, stadiums and industrial projects. Known throughout the industry as a leader and authority on construction matters, he was often called upon as a consultant by owners and architects.
It is impractical to list his entire project experience, but some of the well-known projects that Mr. Cavanagh had worked on include: Rockefeller University’s New Research Laboratory; major new buildings and renovations of Bronx Lebanon Hospital; multiple projects for Mount Sinai Medical Center; North Shore University Hospital; the construction of the USAir Terminal at LaGuardia Airport; Terminal One and Four at JFK Airport; the Rose Center for Earth and Space at the American Museum of Natural History; numerous projects for New York University; New York Stock Exchange; Marriott Marquis Hotel; countless office buildings and other noteworthy projects, such as the Sears Tower in Chicago; Franklin Mills Outlet Shopping Center in Philadelphia; 101 Hudson Street in Jersey City; Philip Morris Cigarette Manufacturing Center in Richmond, Virginia; the Philip Morris Corporate Headquarters, which included construction of the Whitney’s Museum’s exhibition space; the Museum of Modern Art and Orion Power’s Astoria Generating Repowering Project; Major Stadium projects, including the expansion of McCormick Place in Chicago; a BART light rail project in San Francisco. Mr. Cavanagh also led one of the four prime contractors for the cleanup of the World Trade Center site after September 11th, 2001, which was completed ahead of schedule and under budget.
Mr. Cavanagh was active in key industry organizations, including serving as Chairman of the Board since its inception in 1984 of the Contractors’ Association of Greater New York ("CAGNY") is its Chairman Emeritus. In 2001, CAGNY honored Mr. Cavanagh by naming its scholarship program after him. The John A. Cavanagh Scholarship Program continues to provide college scholarships to eligible recipients.
In addition, he was Chairman and still is a member of the Board of Directors of the New York Building Congress, and a member of the City of New York Mayor’s Construction Advisory Council. In fact, on January 26, 2002, the Mayor of the City of New York, Rudy Guiliani, issued a Certificate of Recognition to John Cavanagh for his leadership in the Design, Construction and Real Estate Industry, and for his dedication to the City of New York.
He served two terms as President of New York’s Building Trades Employers’ Association (BTEA). He is the BTEA's Chairman Emeritus. He was a member of the New York Building Department’s Site Safety Committee, and an industry representative of the New York Real Estate Board. He wass also a member of the Board of Directors of the regional Alliance for Small Minority and Women-Owned Contractors, Non-Traditional Employment for Women (NEW) and was Vice Chairman of the New York Building Foundation.
In addition, Mr. Cavanagh was an active Board Member of Construction Skills 2000, organized among the School Construction Authority, the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, New York City Board of Education and the Building and Construction Trades Council. Construction Skills 2000 promotes apprenticeship opportunities with local unions and New York High School students. Mr. Cavanagh was also a member of the Board of Directors of the ACE Mentoring Program, designed to encourage today’s youth to enter the Architecture, Engineering and Construction industry.
Mr. Cavanagh’s education included studies in Civil Engineering at the University of Oklahoma; Construction Technology from Pratt Institute, Brooklyn; and studies at the General Society of Mechanics and Tradesmen of the City of New York.