ENR Texas & Louisiana's 2012 Top 20 Under 40
Strives for the best—good is never enough
Early on, Mike Donovan's father instilled in him that "good is the enemy of the best." That mantra sets his standard for excellence and guides him throughout his career. "He drove me to be the best, whether on the football field or in baseball, golf or academics, and I have carried that over into what I am today," he says. In 2001, at age 27, Donovan and partners began HTS Texas, an exclusive Daikin-McQuay products supplier. Since then, he has improved the brand's reputation in Texas markets that HTS serves and helped build his company into one with annual revenue of $75 million. Donovan seeks better ways to serve his clients and believes complacency allows the competition to catch up. "We're flexible with each individual and how they do business with us, and that has made us successful," he says. "We're about delivering success to them and improving their stature. It's an aggressive approach."
Seeks creative solutions
39, Business Development Manager
Leah Fitzgerald learned to become a problem solver in her training as an architect, something that has aided her in the construction field. "I think outside the box and try to find more creative solutions to problems," she says. Fitzgerald strives to make MW Builders a thought leader in the military, multifamily, hospitality and retail sectors by helping its staff understand not only the construction aspects of building in certain sectors, but also the architectural, development and social perspectives. "Being involved in the issues, writing about them and sharing the knowledge we discover helps us provide an extra level of service to our clients," she says. Through the opportunities Fitzgerald helped cultivate in 2011, MW Builders expects to exceed annual revenue goals. LEED certified, Fitzgerald advocates that construction professionals have a responsibility to build efficient structures that will save on energy costs. As a board member of the Pi Beta Phi Fraternity for Women's Fraternity Housing Corp., she championed the 134-chapter organization's initiative to mandate that all future housing be built to meet green standards.
Matthew I. Frey
Learns from both wins and losses
32, Corporate Director of Development
CF Jordan Construction
San Antonio, Texas
The loss of his mother in childhood and victories on the football field shaped Matthew Frey's values and career. "Those are the two biggest experiences in my life that I draw on and reflect upon on a daily basis," he says. "Growing up, and still today, my father provided a foundation for perseverance, strength, sticking to your morals and making things happen." Frey applies a team approach and winning attitude to his construction career that he developed as a member of a nationally ranked football team at Kentucky's Georgetown College. He does not shy away from new opportunities and is willing to invest the time and resources to figure out solutions and bring profitability to the company. In his two years at CF Jordan, he has helped grow the company's business; it now enjoys the highest backlog in its 43-year history.