Many firms have a singular specialty and are brought in on a large project for just that one part of the job. But at Baxter, we believe every project is unique, complex, and requires wearing a lot of different hats. That’s why we maintain a diverse team of specialized experts that work in close collaboration with each other and our clients to get every part of the job done right, from start to finish. Meet our core team below.
When did you officially join Baxter? I decided to start working with my Dad in 2009. Growing up, I always assumed this whole field was only for men. But under my father’s wing, I realized how much creativity I could bring to the industry and felt it was an amazing opportunity to grow the design/build division here at Baxter. They needed a woman's touch!
When working on a project, how do you define success? Dedication, hard work, and attention to detail. When we make the effort for each individual project to simply be the best it can be, it not only makes that project a success, it generates more business. This is how we've begun really leaving our mark throughout the region.
What sets Baxter apart? The amazing range of talent you'll find on our staff. And the combined affinity for our work – from my father on down. Each and every one of us is innovative, intelligent and constantly educating themselves on how to be the best within their specialty, and in our field overall.
We offer a wide range of services with customizable packages, everything from a complicated, ground-up facility or gut renovation to simply adding a design flare to a private home.
Favorite building in the Hudson Valley? The Post Office here in Poughkeepsie, because not only is it just straight-up beautiful, with unique architectural detail, but also because my Grandfather helped build it. It's one of the original "Baxter Built's!"
When did you join Baxter and what brought you here? 2006 – Close friends with Jane and Bob, they asked me to come work for them part-time on a consulting basis.
How do you see the company changing over the next 5 - 10 years? I see the company bidding and securing larger commercial/residential projects.
Favorite building in the Hudson Valley? The Washington Street medical building. One of ours, of course!
What is your background prior to Baxter? I provided, on a subcontract basis, accounting and financial services to various different small businesses and not-for-profit organizations.
What have you learned about construction and real estate as a result of your work at Baxter? That nothing ever stays the same.
When and why did you join Baxter? I joined Baxter in December of 2016. I wanted to be a part of a rapidly growing company that is investing into the community. As a Property Manager, I have always wanted to be challenged and join a team that has a strong commitment to excellence.
What do you think makes Baxter stand out? Their quality of work, the variety of projects they work on and their diverse portfolio.
What do you like about building in the Hudson Valley? The Hudson Valley has a rich history and many scenic views. I want to see businesses and development thrive here. Baxter wants to maintain the past beauty of the Hudson Valley, while bringing the community toward the future.
What is your favorite building in the Hudson Valley? There are many beautiful churches in the area that I admire. They are filled with intricate details and a link to the history of Dutchess County.
Where are you from originally? I was raised in Hyde Park but was born in Texas. I also lived in England for a few years! It's so eye-opening to live abroad. It gives you a real perspective on people, culture and communities.
How did you originally start the company? Under the tutelage of my late father-in-law Harold Miller. I started out as a full time Industrial Arts teacher at Poughkeepsie Middle School, but I spent my free time attending job sites. I used to watch my grandfather make cabinets and build furniture. I was always so proud that he could build something from nothing. This, coupled with my drive for success as I got older, allowed me to start a business that is now something I can truly be proud of. From my grandfather's influence to my kids coming on board, it's just been an amazing journey.
When working on a project, how do you define success? Originally it was: did we keep the doors open? Today: to hear so many people say nice things about us. It really brings a smile to my face.
What sets Baxter apart? We always try to please our customers by really listening, going beyond their expectations instead of just being dollar-driven. I really care about doing great work for our clients.
How do you see the company changing over the next 5 - 10 years? My children have moved the company to another level. Their vision is our future now as a company, and the energy they bring is really exciting. Their skills deepen the range of what we can offer and together, there's no limit to what we can do.
What do you like about building in the Hudson Valley? The opportunity to leave your mark on the world in a place this beautiful, and being able to give back to communities through our work. It's not always possible, but doing what we do in this region, at this time, is just incredible.
Favorite building in the Hudson Valley? Mill House. It was a real family project, saving it from being a pile of bricks and creating something so special.
Project Executive, LEED AP
When did you join RLB and what brought you here? Funny enough, it's kind of a "guy walked into a bar" story. I'd heard a lot about Mill House and finally went for lunch one day. The place was packed, and I literally found the only open seat, at one of the bars. Next to me? Eric Baxter. We struck up a conversation and quickly discovered that we were both in construction, and ended up talking through my whole lunch. I left that day knowing I'd go to work for them. That was two years ago.
What's your favorite thing about working here? Baxter, as a company, is a dying breed. We still embrace the true spirit of customer service, craftsmanship and quality, at a crucial time in the construction industry, when big business is taking over. It means a lot to me to be able to stand behind the work I am doing and feel so proud. And it's amazing to get to work with such a fun, energetic, motivated, smart group of people every day.
Favorite building in the Hudson Valley? Ah, there are so many! My favorite is a little biased, because I was lucky enough to get to work on it – the Hancock Center at Marist College. It’s not every day that you get the opportunity to help classic design, by a world-renowned architect, come to life. And right down the road, no less. As a builder and a craftsmen, it was just awesome to use “real” materials. The exterior skin was laid stone by stone, and there are miles of oak millwork that line the hallways and classrooms. It's also a “green” building, and loaded with technology. Just so much going on, and I learned so much being a part of it.
When did you officially join Baxter and why? Oh I've been working here since I was a teenager. I'd wake up early before high school and shadow my father, going around to various job sites. I always knew I wanted to join the family business. As soon as I graduated from Union College, in 2010, I joined the business full time.
What do you like about building in the Hudson Valley? I enjoy the relationships and community feeling throughout the region. A lot of jobs have been awarded to us because of the reputation we've built, and the knowledge and level of expertise they know we'll bring to the table. I'm really proud of that.
How do you see the company changing over the next 5-10 years? I think the sky's the limit for Baxter. Our incredible, unique team and the drive we all have, we want to take on bigger and more standout projects, push the limits on what we can do.
What sets Baxter apart? I believe it's our devotion to our clients. We are in a service industry, servicing our clients. This tends to be forgotten in the industry today. Being a family business really attributes to this goal, everyone throughout the company enjoys working here and it shows in the product we put out.
Favorite building in the Hudson Valley? I've always been impressed with what the Page brothers have done with the Poughkeepsie Journal Building. Their ability to keep some of the historic aspects of that structure while creating a vibrant, modern office space that will bring jobs to the city of Poughkeepsie is great.
When did you join Baxter and what brought you here? I joined the firm in 2015 after relocating from New York City. I'd lived in Brooklyn for some time, renovating loft spaces, which grew to renovating apartments and brownstones. That eventually lead to opening my own contracting business, which lead to everything from designing and building recording studios and theatrical scenery for television and films to constructing mixed-use buildings in TriBeCa and SoHo.
When working on a project, how do you define success? Our success is in step with the success of our clients, from a homeowner realizing a dream for their personal space to a business owner seeing their dream come to life as they open the doors to a smart, thoughtful space we helped them achieve. It all comes down to this: exceed client expectations. Success will follow.
What do you like about building in the Hudson Valley? The natural beauty of the Mid-Hudson Valley is always present in the background wherever we are working and it is nothing less than stunning.
What is your background prior to joining Baxter? I worked for Kirchhoff Builders, Kirchhoff-Consigli and Meyer Contracting for over 10 years, doing all manner of construction, building maintenance and management work.
What is a project that you are most proud of? Vassar College Davison House (17 million dollar dorm renovation, building was built in or around 1903.)
When did you join Baxter and what brought you here? I'm the newest hire! March 2016 was my official start date. But I interviewed with them 4 years ago and have seen them triple in size since then; it's very exciting.
What do you think sets Baxter apart? I think drive and youth separate them from the competition. There are so many great, innovative ideas coming out of this team. But great, long-standing relationships and maintaining that reputation for putting out quality construction are what keep them at the top.
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