In a way this year’s DIG Awards event was like coming home, with all the feelings of normal life and the joy of seeing both familiar and fresh faces in the room.

Maybe it was the return to the grandly named Los Angeles Millennium Biltmore Hotel with its cozy Gallery Bar, its comfortable reception space, and its Beaux Arts banquet room.

Maybe it was the fact that we can have events that bring together the people and the companies that make the Engineering Contractors’ Association such a comfortable place to share experiences and business relationships. Who knows the travails and triumphs of being a contractor in these unusual times better than your friendly competitors and suppliers?

Is it just the feeling of something “normal” in a world that has been off kilter for twenty plus months?

Whatever “it” is, the Dignity, Integrity and Generosity Awards, the signature event ECA sponsors each year in October is remarkable in our industry for the nature of the attributes we honor—not tangible things like most revenue, biggest projects, etc.,—but the intangibles that represent the best in our business.

That is why, except for the Covid-19 restrictions of the past year, we gathered to recognize those who exemplify the best qualities of individuals who have advanced the stature of the construction industry. 

This year’s honorees meet and exceed that standard.

Steve Atkinson is much more than a brilliant lawyer who helped build a major firm (Atkinson, Adelson, Loya, Ruud and Romo) from scratch in the demanding world of labor/management relations. He and his two hundred partners and associates not only help their clients navigate the challenging world of labor law, but also the rules governing state and federal public works, wage and hour complaints, and much more. His firm also actively engages with trade associations that help smooth the path for their members—this one included.

John J. Clarke was the exemplar of the DIG characteristics. He was among those resilient contractors who succeeded in the uniquely challenging world of the City of Los Angles public works arena. John did this by exercising a calm, steady approach to those he worked for with humility and professionalism. Recognizing John and his contributions to the industry is long overdue. 

Our quest for deserving DIG awardees is never ending, so remember, our award committee has its eyes on you.

By Ray Baca, Executive Director Email: [email protected]