Featured AE Work-er, Mary McCarty: Seizing Opportunity to Build Impact

February 7th, 2019

Our bobblehead shelf just got a little bigger to celebrate our newest 5 years+ tenured AE Work-er Mary McCarty!

Leading business development strategic initiatives and outreach, Mary finds joy in working closely with clients, partners and AE Works’ diverse group of architects, engineers and consultants to translate building challenges into design solutions.  Her work focuses on understanding client needs and positioning the AE Works team to deliver their unique areas expertise to solve those unique challenges.

“Our clients are the true experts on their business. Listening is at the heart of what we do so we can support our clients’ goals, solve challenges and help them work toward their future vision through building solutions that are responsive to their needs.”

With a degree in Health Policy & Administration from Penn State, Mary has always been passionate about people and wanted to find a career that would allow her calling to flourish.  She finds that purpose in buildings and her career with AE Works. “Buildings exist for people to work, live and play.  When we design, we’re thinking about how people will use the space to give people a great experience.”

Understanding how physical space can impact a person’s health, work, connections and other areas is central to Mary’s work in supporting an exceptional client experience.

“There are many considerations in a building that you don’t consciously notice, but that contribute to how you interact with other people, your experience or how you do your job. For example, at a hospital, no one goes there thinking about boilers and chillers, or about why a space is organized the way it is.  These parts of the unknown are important to the experience of the patient, caregiver, family and staff,” Mary explains.

Demonstrating the impact of physical space, one recent project involved Mary and the AE Works team helping a client improve delivery of healthcare services through renovations to their space.  When complete, the layout of the new clinics will allow them to offer additional healthcare services and better serve their patients.

“On this project, we are working to improve what the client is able to offer in terms of services and how they deliver those services.  We are directly impacting people’s lives and helping our clients meet their mission through their physical space,” Mary shares.

Building projects aren’t a solo production.  Mary enjoys the collaborative nature and creative process of design. She affirms, “I love hearing chatter in the office as a project develops and seeing how the designers work through solving a client’s problem through a building solution.”

Over 5 years at AE Works, Mary has seen, heard and been directly involved with building these opportunities that have resulted in continued growth at the firm.    Mary shares that even though AE Works has grown and has a sign on their headquarters in the North Shore, important things have remained steadfast.  She describes, “Our core values of leadership, craftsmanship and integrity have not changed.  Everything we do is focused on those actionable values.”

Supported by that solid framework of values, Mary is excited about the future at AE Works and opportunity for personal and professional growth, “We’re not afraid to go big, take risks to be different and innovate.”

A proud Pittsburgh resident, Mary also looks forward to the day when AE Works is a well-known, leading firm locally.  She sees that on the horizon, “Our approach is different.  Having five services (architecture, engineering, planning + strategy, project services and security risk management) under one roof is all about collaboration.  We bring that power of diversity to our client in the shape of expertise and holistic building solutions.”

Beyond buildings and working with clients to understand their needs, collaboration is how Mary sees learning.  A lifelong learner and team player, her advice to those new in their careers or just wanting to learn something new is all about collaboration.   She shares, “you can learn from everyone.  Ask questions, be curious, connect with everyone from around you.”