Our History

Building a legacy against the grain


In 1974, Carl Harris, David Newton and a few colleagues left a national design firm to start their own venture. Disheartened by typical corporate bureaucracy, they envisioned a culture where employees were truly empowered, where opportunities to grow were plentiful, where enthusiasm and expertise converged.

That's how the Harris & Associates ethos was born.

Over the next several decades, the firm grew steadily into a leading western-based construction management and engineering firm.

Harris & Associates recruited a world-class team of designers, engineers, construction managers, architects and public finance specialists to serve a diverse roster of public-sector and institutional clients.

Designed to last

In 2010, as the entire industry sought to rebound from the economic downturn, Harris & Associates' board opted to shift course under the direction of new CEO Lisa Larrabee.

The company transitioned its ownership entirely to employees, becoming a 100% employee stock ownership plan (ESOP), S corporation.

Larrabee then reorganized the firm's leadership structure to enhance collaboration and, along with her executive team, mapped a strategic plan focused on four markets and core services.

The most recent chapters in the Harris story tell of a firm adopting new technology and innovative practices, giving back to local communities and investing heavily in team members through enhanced professional development programs.