Haskell Project Superintendent Jeff Williams has traveled the world building a wide variety of industrial projects.

December 7, 2023

Construction Globetrotter: Jeff Williams’ Odyssey from Rome to Mars

Learn how the Haskell Project Superintendent's worldwide journey brought him to his current challenge, a complex vertical expansion for Mars Wrigley.


Project Superintendent Jeff Williams loves ancient history, traveling, the Georgia Bulldogs and golf. On the other hand, he doesn't like chocolate, which has worked to his advantage, given his current Haskell assignment.

Growing up in Rome, Ga., Williams learned the plumbing trade from his father.

"I didn't know my real name. I answered to, 'Hey, plumber,'" Williams said. "From the time I was old enough to carry wrenches, he had me working if I wasn't playing sports."

He earned a degree in mechanical engineering at Southern Polytechnical State University in Marietta, Georgia, and joined the pipefitters local.

After graduating, Williams worked as a pipefitter while indulging in his love of travel.

"I've worked all over – Africa, China, Russia, Iraq, the Middle East, Mexico,” he said. “I would stay 12 to 15 months in most places. I was in Israel for two years and in Iraq for 11 months.

"I enjoyed Africa the most. I'm an enthusiast for ancient history. I visited the Roman ruins and sites of the French Foreign Legion. I traveled all over looking at those kinds of things. I've been to the Great Wall in China, the pyramids in Mexico."

Williams has been married for 38 years to Trina, a doctor in the Walmart healthcare system overseeing the North Florida clinics. Their son lives in St. John, Virgin Islands, and their daughter and his new grandson live in Norway.

"They caught my travel bug," Williams said.

Williams joined Haskell in 2022 following an unplanned connection while he was working for a competitor in Atlanta.

Williams has worked in food and beverage, power, petrochemical, solar and automotive in his four decades in construction.

"You name it, I've built it," Williams said.

Williams is currently the project superintendent on the Mars Wrigley Chocolate Plant Expansion in Elizabethtown, Pennsylvania. The plant makes Dove Chocolate and other popular chocolate bars. Working around all that chocolate could distract some people, but Williams doesn't like chocolate.

He's focused on the $36.2 million design-build project adding 2,500 square feet to the plant for a new confectionary line. The project has a unique challenge. The expansion is vertical – five stories up. And the work is being done without interrupting production.

"It's challenging from an environmental perspective," Director of Construction William Schaet said. "The proximity of the construction to the production line makes it more challenging. It's a 1950s vintage production facility, so we have to accommodate many hidden and unforeseen conditions. Some of it you don't know about until you start taking it apart or trying to tie into it.

"Jeff's doing an excellent job. Jeff is an excellent communicator and builds trust and confidence in the subs community. He builds consensus on the job site and represents Haskell well in front of clients."

Williams says he'll go anywhere and build anything.

"I'll give you 100 percent. I like to tell people that the construction industry is the only industry where you work every day to work yourself out a job. If you do a good job, you never have to look for work. It finds you."

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Haskell delivers $2± billion annually in Architecture, Engineering, Construction (AEC) and Consulting solutions to assure certainty of outcome for complex capital projects worldwide. Haskell is a global, fully integrated, single-source design-build and EPC firm with over 2,200 highly specialized, in-house design, construction and administrative professionals across industrial and commercial markets. With 20+ office locations around the globe, Haskell is a trusted partner for global and emerging clients.

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