Construction firm promotes executive

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Arlen-Dean Gaddy. Courtesy Erhardt Construction

A West Michigan construction firm has a new business development leader.

Erhardt Construction announced this week the promotion of Arlen-Dean Gaddy to vice president of business development.

Gaddy was Erhardt’s director of market strategy.

“I knew Arlen would be a good fit for our team because he embodies our values of integrity, professionalism and performance,” said Erhardt President and CEO Ben Wickstrom. “Since joining our team, Arlen has made a profound impact on our company with his leadership and vision.”

Gaddy joined Erhardt in 2019 with more than 30 years of business development, including as Varnum Consulting’s leader of client relations and leadership roles at AT&T. He said Wickstrom’s leadership style attracted him to the company.

“I was impressed with Ben’s approach to leadership, and as I met more members of his team, I became more interested in how I could contribute and bring value to the company,” Gaddy said.

Among Gaddy’s accomplishments in his four years at Erhardt is the expansion into the Muskegon market and growing the company’s presence on the lakeshore.

He also helped create the company’s Inclusion Advisory Team, which among other endeavors helps expand opportunities for women in nontraditional roles in construction.

Ryan Formsma, former vice president of business development, was promoted to senior vice president. He said Gaddy is focused on strengthening the Erhardt team and leading community growth.

Gaddy, meanwhile, is excited for the next phase of growth for Erhardt. He also hopes to continue his work in showing the West Michigan construction industry continues to grow more diverse.

“We have an amazing team of construction professionals who take pride in building high-performing structures across West Michigan,” Gaddy said. “I am honored to work with them as I move into a new role with the company. For emerging construction professionals of color, I want them to see others who look like them and to know they too can build their careers right here in West Michigan.”