Erminio Labriola came to Durham College (DC) thirty years ago with a dream of pursuing a job that would allow him to create something from the ground up.
“I’ve always enjoyed building,” says Erminio, who graduated from DC’s Civil Engineering Technology program in 1992. “The courses at DC were creative and interactive, and the instructors were seasoned professionals. They offered real-world experiences and stories and that, along with the theory I was learning in class, really inspired my desire to pursue a career in construction. My project management, structural and design classes really gave me a better understanding of how all the pieces work together and those lessons have remained with me throughout my career.”
After college, Erminio worked for a few years at a geotechnical consulting firm, overseeing infrastructure for a housing development, and then moved into a role at a civil engineering company. It was during this time he became specifically interested in residential construction and took an entry-level position at Brookfield Residential to get his feet wet in the industry.
Since then, he’s worked his way up the corporate ladder, earning the title of vice president of Construction for the leading North American new home builder and land developer. Today, Erminio oversees ten ongoing residential projects that are enhancing communities across southern Ontario.
“The best part of my job is connecting with people and watching a newly constructed house become a home,” remarks Erminio. “Returning to finished communities is extremely rewarding as many team members have been involved – design, concept, trades, marketing, sales – and all work together to deliver an amazing finished product. It’s great seeing smiles, hearing laughter and witnessing the overall happiness of the residents who will now create the foundation of a community.”
As vice president, Erminio and his team have also won numerous awards for their design and construction and were named Builder of the Year by the Durham Region Homebuilders’ Association in 2010. They’ve also received nominations for their outstanding customer care, product design and community design in Toronto and the surrounding GTA.
“Industry awards are extremely important to us as they offer an opportunity for us to celebrate and acknowledge our hard work,” Erminio explains. “We strive to improve and build industry standards while providing the best customer experience.”
As Erminio looks towards the future of his own career, and the careers of those entering the industry, he is excited about the potential for innovation through new technology and the development of Smart Cities and has high hopes for the future generation of builders and designers.
“I am so pleased DC is expanding programs in the skilled trades sector. We are facing a demand for skilled workers who can fulfill the housing construction growth,” says Erminio. “The housing industry must continually evolve and stay ahead of demand so that it can adapt to the changing environment. Innovation in the housing industry will result in efficient living experiences at home. I really believe technology will make everyone’s life better at home and at work.”