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Pankow Spotlight: Lyon Rubenstein, a Dedicated Pankow Warrior

This Pankow Spotlight is a collective effort by Pia Johnson, and long-time colleagues Jeff Doke, Calvin Yoshida, Red Ward, Ed Nochez and Aaron Shay to recognize and thank Lyon for being a Dedicated Pankow Warrior.

Field Superintendent Lyon Rubenstein is well-known throughout Pankow. Over his past 23 years with Pankow, he has never said “no” to a challenge or relocation, and has worked in all 3 regions- multiple times!

Lyon started for Pankow at the Waikiki Landmark project working with Jeff Doke and Calvin Yoshida. He began as a Carpenter Apprentice and was quickly promoted to carpenter journeyman. He then worked at the University of Hawaii Special Events Arena as a Carpenter Foreman in charge of layout and running crews for the foundations and structural slab. This was the company’s first project using an EDM (Electronic Distance Measuring Device, aka Top Gun).

“His humor and his “can do” attitude make him one of the most enjoyable people in the company to work with. His crews love him. The engineers he’s worked with love him. He really is one of the very best,” says Jeff Doke.

Calvin Yoshida echoes those comments, “He is a natural leader, all team members look up to him (carpenters, engineers, subcontractors) and has trust with him. He is a collaborator, and he enjoys being on teams that challenge him.” In addition to his impact on the teams in the field, Lyon is fun to be around. “The best way to describe Lyon is he is out of the Wild Wild West,” says Calvin.

Ed Nochez has known Lyon for quite some time now. He says that “Lyon is an example of someone who will do whatever it takes to meet a goal.” For example, “My favorite Lyon moment was when working on the Paramount (aka Third and Mission). I was attempting to layout control lines when Lyon walked up to me and smiled. I hugged him and told him he was behind on his layout and walked away! I knew he would take over from there! I don’t think we’ve assigned him to a simple project yet! He is a firefighter!”

Aaron Shay is currently working with Lyon at 270 Brannan. “Lyon is a great person to work with. I first worked with him 15 years ago at the Stanford Mall Parking Garage when I was an FE and he was a carpenter foreman. We worked together again several years later at 3rd & Mission. I was very excited to hear Lyon was coming back to SF to join the 270 Brannan team. He left his home (as he has many times in the past on other projects) and he has not let the relocation affect his attitude or focus on the job at hand. We have had quite a few difficult challenges on this project but through it all; Lyon remains positive and attacks every problem with a drive to succeed. Lyon is a team player and strives to get buy-in from all where possible. That being said, he also does a good job of directing others where needed. He is a great teacher for the field engineers. Although I’ll be happy for him when he goes back to LA I will also miss working with him,” says Aaron.

Red Ward contributes, “Over the years I have worked with Lyon on many projects, I will name just a few as examples: MTA Headquarters, MWD Headquarters, and Stanford Mall Parking Garage. I promoted him to Field Superintendent on MTA Bus Plaza re-work; Waikiki Beach Walk; Montage; and Civic Park. He has an uncanny ability to stay positive even during the most difficult challenges. The field employees love working for him in our direct work efforts and I mirror others in that he is fun to be around. When not working I enjoy riding motorcycles with him, one of his passions. He is a true friend and colleague; I would work with him anytime and anywhere.”

Thank you Lyon for your dedication to Pankow!