Helen Ouellette, vice president for administration and treasurer, announced the appointment of Irene Addison as Interim Facilities Director for Building and Grounds (B&G) on Nov. 1. Addison will temporarily assume the duties of Steve Mischissin, the former Director of Facilities and Auxiliary Services for B&G.
Addison will serve as the Interim Facilities Director for B&G for approximately six months, while the Office of Vice President for Administration and Treasurer launches a national search to permanently fill Mischissin’s position. The College has contracted Parsons Brinckerhoff (PB), a consulting and management firm, to manage and oversee B&G for the time being. Addison, a project manager and supervising engineer at PB, was appointed by her firm to handle the College’s request. At PB Buildings, Inc, a division of PB, Addison was the design manager of a $1 billion project for General Motors and served as the project manager for a $250 million half-renovated and half-constructed building. Her expertise, especially in the areas of facilities programming, management and construction, will serve her quite well in her new post.
Addison said her professional experience would allow her to look for areas of opportunity within the B&G department.
She will be specifically looking to identify the necessary tools and processes need to help B&G, in her words, “operate as the great service organization that it is.”
Believing that there is an opportunity to improve B&G’s daily operations, Addison plans on working directly with B&G staff and employees to streamline and enhance the department’s day-to-day operations.
As Interim Facilities Director, Addison will oversee the operations of B&G and of the summer conference services. Dining Services will be under the auspices of the Office of the Vice President. Her involvement with the College extends beyond B&G. Addison will also be working with members of the College’s senior staff to help plan the completion of a number of multi-million dollar projects aimed at upgrading the College’s physical plant. Specifically, she will play a key role in the planning of the beginning of construction of the ’62 Center for Theatre and Dance, as well as the planned renovations of Baxter Hall and the Stetson Hall/Sawyer Library complex.
When a company or college undergoes any sort of major renovations, “it is important to consider schedule, scope, budget and impact,” said Addison. She said that she plans on working directly with College administrators to help them recognize the causes and effects of their decisions, which will hopefully result in “whole planning [and] good compromise.”
Addison comes to the College with a great deal of experience in civil engineering. She obtained her B.S. and M.S. in civil engineering from South Dakota State University and Texas A&M, respectively. Her specialty lies in the area of environmental engineering. Shortly after attaining her M.S., Addison joined the U.S. Navy, where she currently serves as a Commander in the Reserves. In the Navy, she was a member of the Civil Engineer Corps, and was responsible for the construction of numerous building projects at U.S. Naval bases throughout the country.
Addison said one of the reasons for becoming an engineer was because the subjects of science and math greatly interested her. Also, in the 1980s, the field of engineering was just starting to be open to women. She found engineering fascinating.
Addison said her first week has been “fantastic. Everyone has been very helpful and friendly [in making me feel] welcomed.” She continued by saying that her main focus has been getting acclimated with B&G’s daily operations and meeting the department’s many employees.