PARAGON CONSTRUCTION LEADERSHIP
The team at Paragon Construction is comprised of talented individuals who strive to deliver each project custom-fit to client expectations, cost parameters and long-term objectives. We are experienced with all aspects of specialty construction projects associated with the Military Housing Privatization Initiative (MHPI). The responsive and knowledgeable crews that we send to job sites are well-versed on the specific codes, regulations and culture that are incumbent within military lodging and housing projects.
David Thaggard founded Paragon Construction in 1993 following a successful career as a project manager on large commercial sites, university campuses and housing. A natural entrepreneur, David parlayed strategic business relationships and project management expertise into a specialty construction business that now includes military housing projects, commercial and residential development, as well as assisted living facilities.
For David, the hallmark of Paragon Construction is company culture, the foundation for a strong workforce that supports and encourages leadership and self-motivated employees. Alongside business partner Tim Klaes, David is committed to promoting from within, and primarily focusing on building the company’s military housing division to renovate, rebuild and create neighborhoods with high-quality, well-maintained housing for service members and their families.
David graduated from Northeast Louisiana University with a Bachelor’s Degree in Construction Management. He and his wife have four children and three grandchildren. His son, DH Thaggard, is Paragon Construction’s Controller in charge of the company’s financial division. As a child of a father serving in the U.S. Air Force, David had first-hand experience growing up in military housing throughout the world. In his free time, David enjoys playing the guitar and savoring the beach life in Inlet Beach, FL where he currently resides.
DIRECTOR OF CONSTRUCTION
As Owner and Partner of Paragon Construction, Tim Klaes serves as the Director of Construction with executive oversight and management responsibilities, including pre-construction services, estimating, project management, strategic planning, procurement and business development.
With more than 20 years of construction experience, Tim is a forward-thinking, hands-on leader with knowledge in multiple sectors of construction management, military lodging/ housing, hotel/hospitality, demolition and environmental abatement.
Tim began his career in 1998 after graduating from Michigan State University with a Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering. Prior to joining Paragon Construction, Tim spent more than a decade in construction engineering and project management for a General Contractor in Grand Rapids, MI. Key project experience ranges from construction of IHG Army Hotels, Holiday Inn Express and JW Marriott, to remodels for Meijer Superstores throughout the Midwest. In addition, Tim has managed military housing and hotel projects, averaging $4-6 million per project, nationwide and in Puerto Rico.
In 2013, Tim joined forces with industry veteran David Thaggard to strategically position Paragon Construction for future growth in multiple industry sectors.
Outside of work, Tim has three primary passions: family, community and running. He and his wife, Kimberly, reside in Grand Rapids and are the proud parents of two boys. From coaching his sons’ sports teams to competing in long-distance races, Tim enjoys staying active. A former cross country runner for Michigan State, he completed a 60-mile run in 2012 from his alma mater in East Lansing to the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor to raise money for the Wounded Warrior Project. Tim – whose father and grandfather were veterans – is committed to the ongoing support of military outreach programs for active duty service members, military families and veterans.
DIRECTOR OF BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT
Jim came to Paragon Construction in 2015 bringing more than 30 years of construction experience including a central focus on the Military Lodging and Housing channel since 2008. In his role as Director of Business Development, Jim establishes and maintains lasting industry relationships nationwide, focusing on added value for the client, and effectively communicating concepts and ideas. His primary responsibility is to determine how Paragon Construction can best serve the needs of the client based on his comprehensive understanding of the Military Housing and Lodging Program. Jim works closely with the members of Paragon Construction’s management team to pursue new business opportunities and support the execution of the strategic and financial goals of the company.
Prior to joining Paragon Construction, Jim served as the Senior Vice President of Construction for the Corvias Group following six years of employment with Lendlease (US), where he was the Senior Vice President Director of Lodging. He managed the development of approximately 15,000 homes across seven locations ($200M budget). In addition, he oversaw the development and construction of 11,800 hotel rooms in 38 Army installations ($1B budget). Jim served as the primary contact for all project stakeholders including the Department of Defense, Inter-Continental Hotel (IHG) Group, Lenders, ICC and Design- Build Team. He was responsible for all aspects of leading the construction group including fiscal management, long-range planning, scheduling, delivery, construction quality, safety, employee relations, performance management, accountability, compensation, staffing and cost control.
Jim holds a Bachelor of Science from the University of Michigan and a Juris Doctorate from Wayne State University Law School. He was previously a licensed attorney, real estate broker and licensed Contractor in the state of Michigan. The son of a US Air Force of officer, Jim is a self-starter who established his own construction development company at the age of 18. His focus on building safe and thriving urban developments in downtown Detroit included efforts to employ disadvantaged individuals and their families to provide better opportunities and housing options.
Jim currently resides in Brentwood, TN, with his wife Jodie and their five children. Together, they are active in the community, especially school activities and the YMCA.
CHARLES “CHARLIE” SMITH
BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT MANAGER
Charlie joined Paragon Construction in late 2016, bringing more than 30 years of experience in transaction management, development, design and construction of residential, commercial and P3 projects. His primary focus is new business development.
Charlie leverages Paragon Construction’s design/build experience in the Military Housing Privatization Initiative ‘world’ (MHPI – housing and lodging) – the largest and most successful P3 ever initiated in the US. Charlie pursues additional opportunities with clients that share common values and develop/manage work in the commercial and residential property industry.
Prior to joining Paragon, Charlie spent nearly a decade with Lendlease as an Executive Vice President. During his tenure there, he held the positions of Director of Business Development, Director of Communities Development, Director of Governmental Affairs (lobbying) as well as leading and closing the very successful Privatization of Army Lodging (PAL) Program.
Prior to Lendlease, Charlie spent more than 20 years as a senior manager in the real estate and construction industry in the Southeast US.
Charlie’s professional affiliations include: Association of Defense Communities, National Council of Public-Private Partnerships (NCPPP), United States Green Building Council (USGBC), and Urban Land Institute (ULI). He has former affiliations with the National Association of Industrial and Office Properties (NAIOP) and International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC).
Charlie earned a Bachelor of Science and Masters in Engineering from the University of Tennessee. He currently resides in Franklin, TN, with his wife and is the proud father of three (3) children. In his free time, Charlie enjoys all sports including golf, snow skiing, running and hiking.
INTERIORS DIVISION MANAGER
Jake Baugh joined Paragon Construction in 2014 with more than 10 years of interior construction experience. Jake oversees all aspects of Paragon Construction’s Interiors Division, including pre-construction services, estimating, project management and installation services.
During his career, Jake has directed installations for Holiday Inn, JW Marriott, Radisson Plaza, and Meijer Superstores, as well as public school systems and hospitals throughout Michigan. He was responsible for multiple military lodging and housing installations including a $5M project for the U.S. Army at Fort Leonard Wood, MO.
Jake followed a natural path of entering the construction industry since his parents owned a flooring business and his father was an installer. Jake began working in the family business and became the Owner/Operator of Baugh Flooring, a business he started immediately out of college. In 2003, Jake joined a Michigan-based contractor where he was employed as Project Manager and Interiors Manager for more than a decade.
Jake graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree from Indiana University. He and his wife married in 1999; they live in Grand Rapids, MI, with their four children. An avid wakeboarder and surfer, Jake is passionate about fitness and exercise and enjoys spending time with his family.
D.H. joined the family business at Paragon Construction in 2010. With more than 10 years of professional finance and operations experience, D.H. oversees all financial aspects of Paragon Construction including budgets, accounting, payroll, financial reporting, statement analysis, and reconciliations. D.H. interacts with all company divisions and managers as well as clients and vendors. Armed with a teaching background, he enjoys coaching people through processes and assisting with implementing solutions to improve efficiencies.
Prior to coming on board at Paragon Construction, D.H. managed the operations department for Boston-area nonprofit Tenacity, Inc. which assisted children in middle and high school by providing literacy and sports programs – keeping them on a path to attend college.
D.H. received a Bachelor’s degree from Lee University in English Literature and a Master’s degree in Elementary Education and Teaching. He currently resides in Rhode Island where he enjoys spending time with his wife and two children. DH’s hobbies include traveling, playing guitar, and trying out new restaurants.
Matthew joined Paragon Construction in 2016 and is responsible for overseeing daily operations related to Accounts Payable, including producing records, bookkeeping and financial transactions. He works in conjunction with the company Controller to support Paragon Construction’s accounting department.
With more than 15 years of experience in finance, Matthew most recently worked as the Accounts Payable Manager at a leading financial loan service for over a decade.
Matthew graduated from Lee University in Cleveland with a Bachelor’s Degree in English Literature. While he was born in Washington, Matthew and his family frequently moved with his father who served in the U.S. Army. Matthew is married with four sons whose school, social and church activities influence most of his time outside of the office.
Brad came on board with Paragon Construction in 2013 to advise on all project field activities including the responsibility for implementation of a Safety/Zero Harm program for the jobsites and supervision of construction work by subcontractors. In his role as General Superintendent, Brad shares responsibility with project managers for developing budgets, actively participating in the pre-construction phase, and ensuring projects are built on time, within the budget and according to company policies and procedures. Brad manages and mentors superintendents, assistant superintendents and other field personnel. As Safety & Environmental Manager, Brad oversees the implementation of construction project safety and loss prevention programs – including federal/state regulations – for assigned projects to prevent accidents. A former project supervisor for a Michigan-based contractor, Brad brings 20 years of experience to Paragon Construction after overseeing large-scale, national commercial renovations including Radisson, JW Marriott and Meijer Superstores. Brad attended Colorado State University where he studied Project Management. He currently resides in Michigan and spends his free time fishing for salmon on Lake Michigan and bow hunting.