Leadership takes on many forms in an industry as challenging as construction. For more than 20 years, Hunzinger Construction Company conducts an annual strategic planning process whereby we take a hard look at our industry and develop tactical initiatives designed to challenge the status quo and be responsive to the ever-changing environment in which we conduct our business. Significant outcomes from this process have been (a) the development of a Total Quality Management process and commitment (Q 3) where we engage our clients, specialty subcontractors/vendors/suppliers, and employees in the culture of quality awareness in every aspect of our project delivery systems, (b) the development and funding of Hunzinger Construction University (HCU) with the goal of providing continuous improvement of the skills of our people to make us a better company, and (c) researching emerging markets that we believe are key to the success and growth of our company.
Additionally, we participate in a national PEER Review Group that provides quarterly sessions with eight similar, non-competing firms from every corner of the nation. Given the breadth of the participating firms and the depth to which the process delves into how each firm conducts itself in its respective marketplace, this PEER group activity stands out as one of the strongest drivers of our continued success and growth. This prestigious group, made up of the President/CEOs of each of the participating firms, spends a great deal of time discussing trends in the industry and looks for meaningful ways that each can react to changing trends and remain on the leading edge of new developments. It was from this forum that the subject of green building came to light and Hunzinger Construction Company embarked on a commitment to internally challenging our culture to be true to the precepts of sustainable design and construction as we moved into our second century. We saw this as yet another success driver and an ability to continue to differentiate ourselves in a very competitive marketplace, while responding to the ever-growing trend of green building.
We began our journey by becoming a corporate member of the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) and the Wisconsin Green Building Alliance. Once these were in place, we hosted a USGBC Workshop in September 2004 to introduce the concept not only to staff members, but also extended the invitation to our Q 3 partners, as well as the design and engineering community. The workshop was sponsored by HCU and was conducted by a USGBC trainer. Our goal was to provide a proper kick-off to our commitment, position us favorably in the marketplace, and begin to educate our team on the importance of sustainable design and construction.
As a follow-up to the initial HCU event, President John C. Hunzinger and Executive Vice President James R. Hunzinger challenged all of our professional staff to obtain LEED Accredited Professional status. To achieve this goal, HCU sponsored company-wide training activities and study groups to insure that our people were well versed and prepared to pass the professional examination. To date, more than 65% of our professional staff has achieved LEED AP credentials, and we have over 20 additional LEED trained professionals among our ranks that are available to our clients for consultation in the early stages of project development.