Charles “CJ” Singleton joined Haskell in 2017 because he wanted “bigger and better things” for himself and his family. It didn’t take him long to achieve that, thanks to his decade-plus of construction experience, strong work ethic and commitment to Haskell’s client-first philosophy.
Singleton became an assistant superintendent just a few months after joining Haskell, cutting his teeth on projects in the Healthcare division. He was then assigned to several industrial projects under the Consumer Packaged Goods division to broaden his experience as an acting superintendent. He earned a promotion to superintendent at the beginning of 2020.
“He’s a guy you don’t want to lose. I’d love to have him on every project I do,” said Cole Huggins, a project manager with Haskell who recently worked with Singleton on a $3.3 million design-build rail spur project for Frito-Lay in Irving, Texas. “He’s a super nice guy, pays great attention to details and he does a really good job working with the client and being our face and boots on the ground.”
Mother nature presented unique challenges to Singleton’s crew on the Frito-Lay rail spur, one of the last phases of a multi-phase project Haskell performed for the longtime client. Workers had to dig into the earth to lay a foundation for the rail bed, and Singleton said the clay soil was different than any he had worked with. Heavy rain made the work even more difficult.
“As soon as it got wet, it turned into a swamp. The more it rained, we had to dig down deeper to replace the soil. It would rain again, and we had to take more out,” he said. “The pandemic was also a big challenge, but we didn’t slow down at all. We just overcame and adjusted to make sure we kept the guys and ourselves safe.”
A native of Jacksonville Beach, Florida, Singleton grew up working in his father’s HVAC business. In 2005, he took a job with a local contracting company, overseeing the construction of prominent restaurants and a country club.
Although he became a superintendent for the company, Singleton decided he wanted to further advance his career. He reached out to his uncle, who was an employee at Haskell, and landed an interview. He accepted a job as lead carpenter but quickly rose through the ranks.
“We highlighted him early, and he was able to get good experience in Healthcare. But when he transitioned, he’s been able to excel in industrial work, too,” said David Bates, vice president of Haskell’s Construction Core. “We wanted to get him into a different environment around a different group of contractors where he would be able to grow. He’s been able to get experience building new relationships.”
Huggins said one of Singleton’s greatest strengths is his leadership, whether he’s overseeing Haskell employees on self-perform work or a team of subcontractors.
“He’ll take his team and drag them through it, or barely prompt them. He’s good at getting the best out of people,” Huggins said.
Singleton said he’s a demanding superintendent because he will do “whatever it takes” to make a customer happy. However, he said workers appreciate his willingness to get his hands dirty and teach them everything he knows.
“Definitely a huge factor is showing them I’m not just an office superintendent. I’m out there myself performing work,” he said. “And I won’t tell anyone to do something that I wouldn’t do. I am hard, but I try to teach them through the processes of it.”
When he’s not traveling, Singleton still lives in Jacksonville Beach with his wife and three sons.
Haskell delivers more than $1 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 1,800 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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