April 29, 2022

Westwood’s Daniel Parks, PE Enters Retirement

Dan Parks, Commercial Development, Minnesota, Minneapolis, Twin Cities, Engineer Dan Parks, Commercial Development, Minnesota, Minneapolis, Twin Cities, Engineer

Westwood Professional Services is honored to celebrate Daniel Parks, PE, and his contribution to the industry as he enters retirement. Dan joined Westwood in 2002 and was instrumental in developing the firm's commercial business in the Twin Cities and surrounding areas.

Career Success

Dan pursued and received his BS and MS in civil engineering from the University of Minnesota. He has since held professional licenses and provided professional services in six states. Working 38 years in the profession, and half of those years at Westwood, Dan was a Westwood shareholder, member of its Board of Directors, and office leader. Additional achievements to note are his memberships and leadership roles with the MSCA and NAIOP and being last year’s recipient of the MN REJournal Engineer of the Year.

Project Success

Dan dedicated his career to maximizing the development value of his client's property. He has successfully led countless clients through the project approval process, earned their trust, and built many long-lasting relationships as a result.

“It’s always been about building relationships,” says Dan. “Project success is about understanding the bigger picture and providing an effective delivery.” Since joining the firm, he has led over 600 projects for multiple developers, retailers, contractors, and communities.

Retail and industrial developments – and more specifically, grocery-anchored shopping centers, were Parks’ sweet spot. He completed well over 30 of these projects in the Twin Cities area.

In recent years, Dan shifted his focus to building business and mentoring younger staff. “I enjoy teaching what I know,” he says. “Many good engineers are serving this industry, and, to best help our clients, we need to understand their business and act proactively in getting their projects designed, approved, and constructed. Regular and ongoing communication with our clients is most important for the success of any project.”

Giving Back

Dan was instrumental in launching and leading Westwood’s giving back efforts. Passionate for helping others, he and his Giving Back committee developed a human-centric giving model, similar to the firm’s current giving program launched late last year called Westwood GIVES.  Dan’s work helped to instill a strong culture of giving at Westwood which has since expanded across all office locations. His leadership and support through volunteering and driving corporate donations has helped Westwood to support organizations such as Feed my Starving Children, Mary’s Place, Toys for Tots, Habitat for Humanity, and many more employee-chosen causes across the U.S.

Outside of the office, Dan’s contributions range from mentoring students at his church and coaching numerous sports, to leading volunteer efforts for several years in Haiti and Jamaica.

The Next Chapter

Transitioning to retirement, Dan will see his current projects to completion and continue to mentor the next generation of project managers. He looks forward to the additional time he will get to spend with his five grandchildren, as well as playing guitar, continuing to learn, traveling, staying fit, and participating in church functions and political campaigns. Dan will keep his engineering skills sharp by being active on the Water Board in his future hometown.

Barry Morgan, Westwood’s Senior Director of the North Region Land Division wishes Dan the best, “Although it is extremely challenging to see Dan move onto the next chapter, we wish him the best in his endeavors. We are forever grateful for his contributions to the firm and look forward to continuing the work he has started for years to come.”

“On behalf of all who have had the pleasure to work with Dan,” Morgan shares, “Thank you for your contributions to Westwood, the communities you serve, and your friends and colleagues. Congratulations, Dan!“

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