WHEN TALENTED PROFESSIONALS TALK, WE LISTEN.

Admit it, you have an inquiring mind, and you want to know about the team building your Jackson Hole dream home. We understand the inclination. So we decided to bring you ShopTalk, conversations with the talented pros designing, building, and outfitting your homes.

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CHARLIE McWILLIAMS
McWILLIAMS AND CO. CONSTRUCTION

Charlie McWilliams, founder of McWilliams and Co. Construction in Ketchum, Idaho, knows a thing or two about mountain town culture. As a former ski racer and one of the original K2 Performers featured in classic Dick Barrymore ski films in the seventies, McWilliams’ passion for skiing brought him to the Wood River Valley in 1963. In 1985, McWilliams made the decision to leave the ski industry and invest his passion in the construction field; he has been a stand-out builder in the area ever since. Here, McWilliams shares a bit about McWilliams and Co. and the passion he still feels for building in the mountains.

WHAT SERVICES DO YOU OFFER?

We provide a full range of construction services, from remodel to new construction.

WHAT GEOGRAPHIC AREAS DO YOU SERVE?

Our company is focused on projects in the Wood River Valley.

DO YOU HAVE ANY SPECIAL CERTIFICATIONS OR SPECIALTIES?

I’m a Certified Green Professional (CGP), a designation from the National Association of Homebuilders that “recognizes builders, remodelers and other industry professionals who incorporate green and sustainable building principles into homes— without driving up the cost of construction.”

WHAT IS YOUR PROFESSIONAL BACKGROUND?

I spent 20 years in the ski business—in domestic and foreign sales and marketing—before I entered into the construction field.

WHEN DID YOU KNOW THAT YOU WANTED TO BE A DESIGNER AND WHAT MOTIVATED YOU?

I actually fell into the field by accident 31 years ago. I worked for a contractor for the summer as I was putting together a company in the ski industry, and when I decided not to continue with the ski company, the contractor asked me to stay and work with him. I knew then that it was something I would love to do.

HOW DO YOU SEE HAPPENING IN THE CONSTRUCTION FIELD IN THE VALLEY IN THE NEXT 5 TO 10 YEARS?

I anticipate we’ll see more teardowns of existing homes as buyers seek to make the most of limited lots and create homes that reflect their own needs and style; and I’m sure we’ll continue to work through many more remodels, as well.

WHAT PROJECT(S) ARE YOU MOST EXCITED ABOUT RIGHT NOW?

I’m always most passionate about the projects currently underway—each project is exciting.

DESCRIBE YOUR PROCESS—HOW DO YOU WORK WITH CLIENTS, DESIGNERS, AND ARCHITECTS?

I like to get involved with a project at the earliest opportunity—right from the beginning—to connect with the owner or architect. A group effort always comes up with a better project! I like to be involved in all aspects of the design and construction.

WHAT PROJECT(S) ARE YOU THE MOST PROUD OF?

I am truly proud of all of our projects. Each one is unique and provides opportunities to offer our clients the best.

WHAT WORD(S) DO PEOPLE USE TO DESCRIBE YOUR WORK?

I would say that “unique” likely comes up a lot, as does “attention to detail.”

WHAT MAKES THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN GOOD CONSTRUCTION AND GREAT CONSTRUCTION?

I think it really comes down to attention to detail throughout the entire process.

WHAT IS THE MOST EXCITING NEW PRODUCT OR DEVELOPMENT IN YOUR FIELD?

Innovations in computer-aided design (CAD) are continuing to evolve and the benefits to the construction process are significant. And, and improvements in materials are constantly surfacing, which is also exciting.


WHAT DO YOU ENJOY MOST ABOUT YOUR WORK?


I love the entire process, from our initial meetings with clients and architects to the completion of the final product.


IF YOU WEREN’T IN CONSTRUCTION, WHAT WOULD YOU BE DOING?


I’d be working in some capacity in the ski industry.


DO YOU HAVE A FAVORITE SPORT OR RECREATIONAL ACTIVITY, AND WHAT DO YOU ENJOY ABOUT IT?


Skiing is still my passion.


WHAT DO YOU LISTEN TO WHILE YOU WORK?


My mind!


WHAT PLACES IN THE WORLD DO YOU FIND MOST INSPIRATIONAL AND WHY?


I have traveled a fair amount and I always find something that inspires me in every country I visit.


IF YOU COULD OWN ANY “TOY,” WHAT WOULD IT BE AND WHY?


I am a pilot and would love another plane!


WHAT DO YOU ENJOY MOST ABOUT LIVING AND WORKING WHERE YOU DO?


The people in the Valley are truly the best feature of this area, and the climate is great too.


YOU GET WEAK IN THE KNEES OVER?


My wife.

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CARMEN FINEGAN
ARCHITECTURAL RESOURCES

Originally from Colombia, Carmen Finegan is a principal architect for Architectural Resources in Ketchum, Idaho. As a registered licenseD architect with more than 15 years of experience, Finegan is known for her expertise in the conceptual design phase, which offers clients new and fresh ideas. From sourcing a single piece of furniture to designing a large scale project from the ground up, Finegan is dedicated from start to finish.


WHAT SERVICES DO YOU OFFER?


Full architectural services and interior design as a team collaboration with Architectural Resources.


WHAT GEOGRAPHIC AREAS DO YOU SERVE?


I have done work in both Colombia and throughout the United States, but mostly the Intermountain West.


DO YOU HAVE ANY SPECIAL CERTIFICATIONS OR SPECIALTIES?


I am a Licensed Architect of the State of Idaho, and an expert in Archicad.


WHAT IS YOUR PROFESSIONAL AND EDUCATIONAL BACKGROUND?


I graduated from the Pontifical Xaverian University in Bogota, Colombia with a Master’s Degree in Architecture. I worked with several architectural firms in the Valley before becoming a principal for Architectural Resources.


WHAT INSPIRES YOU?


I’m inspired by most any challenge!


WHAT OTHER SPECIALTIES DO YOU HAVE IN-HOUSE?


Interior design and construction consultation.


WHAT MAKES THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN GOOD DESIGN AND GREAT DESIGN?


The fine balance of when form meets function and that little extra secret ingredient.


WHAT WORDS DO PEOPLE USE TO DE-SCRIBE YOUR WORK?


Clean and functional.


WHAT DO YOU ENJOY MOST ABOUT HELPING PEOPLE CREATE AN ENVIRONMENT THAT REFLECTS THEIR PERSONALITY AND LIFESTYLE?


The lasting relationships and bonds created during the design process.


WHAT DO YOU LISTEN TO WHILE YOU WORK?


I don’t listen to music when I’m working—I prefer white noise, much like a blank canvas.


DO YOU HAVE A FAVORITE SPORT OR RECREATIONAL ACTIVITY, AND WHAT DO YOU ENJOY ABOUT IT?


Mountain biking and skate skiing are two of my favorite activities, although it’s difficiult to choose with so many amazing options available to us here in Sun Valley.


IF YOU COULD OWN ANY PIECE OF FINE ART, WHAT WOULD IT BE AND WHY?


The Dancers or Los Musicos o la Nina by Rojo de Fernando Botero, a Colombian figurative artist and sculptor. His art is so vibrant and very Colombian.


WHAT DO YOU ENJOY MOST ABOUT LIVING AND WORKING IN SUN VALLEY?


What I love the most about living here is the sense of community— I enjoy how close everything is, how safe we feel, and all the best outdoor activities we have right out our front door.


FAVORITE SEASON? WHY?


I like all the seasons equally. Really.


LAST BOOK YOU READ THAT YOU WOULD HIGHLY RECOMMEND AND WHY?


Mountain Mantras. It’s positive and funny and teaches you to smile through adversity.


FAVORITE TRIP YOU’VE EVER TAKEN?


When I came to Sun Valley for the first time.


YOU GET WEAK IN THE KNEES OVER?


Chocolate!

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