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Member profile: What it’s like working at Benham, an Oklahoma Top Workplace

Adam West - Head Shot.jpg

As a lifelong Oklahoman, Adam West is committed to giving back to the state that raised him. It’s what sparked his pursuit of a lifelong career in designing infrastructure to improve the quality of life of Oklahomans for generations to come.

Benham, a Haskell Company, hired West for his first job out of school after earning his Master’s in Civil Engineering at Oklahoma State University. Now, nearly 35 years later, he’s a senior vice president leading the company’s Civil Infrastructure Division that designs everything from taxiways to military training ranges throughout the country, including right here in Oklahoma.

“One of the things that has kept me at Benham all these years has been the variety of work and the strong company culture,” said West. “I’m grateful for the many different opportunities I’ve been given.”

Throughout his career, West has had a hand in the design of water treatment plants, highways, bridges, dams, airports, and many high-profile federal government projects, just to name a few.

Today, he serves as more of a people manager than a project manager. He leads teams in markets like Oklahoma City, Tulsa, Dallas, Jacksonville, St. Louis and Minneapolis-Saint Paul to ensure the company’s broad range of civil infrastructure projects make it across the finish line.

With more than 135 employees located within our state, it’s particularly exciting when those Oklahoma-based employees get to work on projects in their own backyard. 

“Benham is proud to provide high-quality careers for engineers and design professionals within Oklahoma,” said West. “While our reach often extends far beyond the boundaries of our state, a large portion of those design projects are intended for construction right here in our state. It’s always rewarding to see work done for Oklahomans, by Oklahomans.”

As a father of five now-grown kids—including a set of triplets—work-life balance has long been a priority for West. His time at the company has seen him through marriage, raising kids, volunteering and grief, and he’s appreciative of the flexibility the company has afforded him all these years. “Our company has always been employee focused and very family friendly.  At Benham, our people come first,” he said.

From community service initiatives to United Way fundraising campaigns, fostering a balanced company culture rooted in not only technical excellence but also employee well-being is at the heart of the business. It’s a strategy that has paid off: the company recently claimed the top spot among midsize businesses in The Oklahoman's Top Workplaces awards.

The honor is a testament to not only Benham’s commitment to employee culture but also to the state. The company’s roots in Oklahoma date all the way back to 1909.

West currently serves as the Chairman for American Council of Engineering Companies in Oklahoma and is passionate about attracting and retaining great talent in our state. It’s just one of the reasons West and Benham are involved with Open for Business Oklahoma (OFBO).

“OFBO helps us raise awareness among the public and legislators about the benefits our members provide to the state,” said West. 

Learn more about how OFBO is helping serve businesses operating in Oklahoma.

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