Ken Pike’s construction career began back when Architects and
Engineers provided fully detailed documents and actively directed the building
process. He saw the industry evolve into the design-build approach wherein A/E
plans are more conceptual, shop drawings are used to fill in the details, and
the General Contractor carries the Quality burden, thus creating increased
likelihood of disputes.
Ken’s father was a member and shop steward of the United Packinghouse Workers union, which brought discussions of labor/management disputes to the family dinner table each day. A decade later Ken came into construction at the very bottom, working as a common laborer and member of the AFL-CIO union local. A bit more than a decade after that he found himself on the other side of the fence, managing a business that employed members of his former Laborers Union, and negotiating with their Steward and Business Agent. This unique “in-the-trenches” perspective helps him to see that there are two sides to every disagreement, and that a solution usually lies somewhere in between.
His experience as a laborer aroused his curiosity about how steel beams and concrete footings were designed, and that led him to Purdue University and a Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering. In 1965 he became a Junior Civil Engineer with the Bridge Division of the California Highway Department working on construction inspection and bridge design. His next step was working as Office Engineer for the general contractor on the Ohio River Uniontown Locks Project. At the end of that project he became a Field Engineer for the Midwest Region of the Portland Cement Association, providing technical support to concrete designers and users.
When PCA was downsized he went to work for a small precast concrete company in western Kentucky as the Chief Engineer and, eventually, General Manager. This began a 35 year career in the precast business that led him from Kentucky to North Carolina, and to experiences as an engineer, operations manager, salesman, marketer, and project manager. As he matured in this business he was the one that builders and designers turned to for guidance on how to use precast systems in their projects. He was also the one they called on when they were not satisfied with some aspect of the agreement or the performance provided by his company.
That experience in the precast business kept him deeply involved in negotiating contracts and in working out disagreements before they became lawsuits. By his retirement in January 2006 he was already enamored with the ADR process and so he set about taking the class work and the mediation observations required by North Carolina statutes so that he could become a non-attorney Certified Superior Court Mediator. That title was conferred in July 2006.
He is also co-founder of a business, Sunbelt Consulting Group, LLC, which was formed to provide ADR services and Property/Casualty Insurance Claims services.
DISPUTE RESOLUTION EXPERIENCE
Completed the six hour course on the North Carolina Courts system (March 2006) that is required of non-attorney candidates for certification as Superior Court Mediator.
Completed the forty hour Mediation Training course (May 2006) required of all candidates for certification as North Carolina Superior Court Mediators.
Completed the five observations of Court Ordered Mediations (July 2006) required of all non-attorney candidates for certification as North Carolina Superior Court Mediators
Received certification as a North Carolina Superior Court Mediator in July 2006.
Received original Professional Engineering license in Indiana in 1970. After moving to North Carolina that license was retired.
Received North Carolina Professional Engineer license in 1989.
Member of the National Society of Professional Engineers.
Member of the North Carolina Society of Professional Engineers.
Member of the Marketing Committee for the Prestressed Concrete Institute.
Served in the US Army and Army Reserve. Honorably discharged in 1963 at rank of Staff Sergeant E-6.
Certified Adult Literacy Tutor for the Brunswick Literacy Council.
Member of the US Volunteers – a veterans group that performs Final Military Honors at funerals of deceased veterans.
President of the Triangle Calligraphers Guild, 1998 to 2003
Vice President of the
Carolina Lettering Arts Society, 1999 to 2004