NECA bestows the James H. McGraw Award upon a person adjudged to have contributed some new or useful idea to the electrical contracting industry or to have performed an industry service over and above normal responsibility to personal or company progress. This year, Michael Parkes, the Chief Operating Officer of O'Connell Electric in Rochester, NY, is recognized for his contributions to the success of the electrical construction industry.
Parkes is a fifth-generation electrical construction professional who has been a driving force in the electrical construction industry for the last 20 years. As the Chair of ELECTRI International, from 2021 to 2022, he led the organization through the pandemic and spearheaded several groundbreaking research initiatives, including the Pandemics and Construction Productivity Report. Prior to that, Parkes was a member of ELECTRl's Program Review Committee, beginning in 2015. He also served as Task Force Chair for several ELECTRI research projects and chaired the Committee in 2019 and 2020.
In addition to his roles with ELECTRI, Parkes has been an active member of the NECA Innovation & Strategy Taskforce. His leadership has been critical in developing new approaches to construction, including the use of technology and automation. Parkes is a proud sponsor of a future leader, as part of NECA's Innovation Institute, to help further their development as a leader.
Estimating, planning, and scheduling support for each division of the company are all parts of Parkes’ daily responsibilities as COO of O’Connell Electric. Parkes oversees strategic direction of O'Connell's premier electrical construction services as well as implementation of sound, consistent project management practices throughout the company.
For his industry leadership in construction research and innovation, Michael Parkes is being honored with the 2023 James H. McGraw Award.