As Tarlton Corp. celebrates its Founders Day, the company looks forward to another year of industry service and leadership: Dirk Elsperman, Tarlton executive vice president and chief operating officer, will be sworn in as president of Associated General Contractors of America in April 2019. When he takes office, Elsperman will become one of only four AGC principals from the bi-state area to lead the national organization.
The announcement coincides with an important milestone in Tarlton’s history – Founders Day, a day of companywide celebration each fall that marks the Oct. 2 birthday of Arthur Elsperman, one of the firm’s founders and first generation of leaders. Arthur Elsperman served as the first president of the AGC of St. Louis (now the AGC of Missouri) in 1950.
Locally, five others from Tarlton have served as president or chairman of the state association: J. Al Riley in 1967, Robert Elsperman in 1981, Bob Siess in 1995, Tracy Hart in 2008 and Dirk Elsperman in 2013. Hart, Tarlton president, began her service to the St. Louis chapter in 1996 and also has been active with the national AGC.
Three AGC of Missouri members have served as treasurer of the AGC of America, including Robert Elsperman in 1999. In addition, over the last 20 years Tarlton employees collectively have held more than 100 committee positions with the national association and more than 520 committee positions with the St. Louis/Missouri chapter. In those 20 years, 26 Tarlton employees have chaired or served on AGC of St. Louis/Missouri committees.
As president of AGC of America, which is celebrating its centennial this year, Dirk Elsperman will have the unique opportunity to speak with AGC chapter leaders and members across the United States to glean important industry insights on issues and concerns facing general contractors today.
A leader in the construction industry, Elsperman has 30 years of experience and a history of service in local and national capacities for AGC. In addition to serving as chairman of the board for AGC of Missouri, he has been a contributing member on 10 committees for AGC of America that focus on construction education and training; project management and delivery; Lean construction; government affairs; and labor policy, negotiations and agreements. He also is certified in the AGC of America Advanced Management Program.
In his year as AGC of America president, Elsperman will promote workforce development and diversity in construction. He seeks to further educate and engage young people in considering the many rewarding careers in the construction industry. “I am honored to have the opportunity to serve AGC of America as we continue in the mission to provide advocacies that help shape our industry’s future,” he adds.
Elsperman has worked in all aspects of Tarlton’s operations, including apprenticing as a carpenter, estimating, project engineering and management and executive management. He holds OSHA 30 Hour and First Aid certifications. He is a member of the Southern Illinois Builders Association and served on the executive board for the St. Louis Construction Collaborative, a labor-management group that works to improve the construction industry in St. Louis.
Elsperman is a LEED Accredited Professional. He earned a bachelor’s degree in applied economics and business management from Cornell University in Ithaca, N.Y., and a master’s degree in business administration from Washington University in St. Louis. He serves on advisory boards for The Salvation Army, Olin Business School and the Foundation for St. Andrew’s Resources for Seniors. An avid outdoor enthusiast, Elsperman enjoys hiking, rafting, swimming, cycling and running. He regularly participates in philanthropic races and events with Tarlton and individually.