Although now comprised of more than 120 people in ten offices across the U.S., Brailsford & Dunlavey began as a true start-up 23 years ago. In October of 1993, the firm began doing business as Brailsford Associates, Inc., and consisted solely of the two principals, Paul Brailsford and Chris Dunlavey, and a part-time employee, Brad Noyes, working out of a single room in an executive office suite. Brailsford and Dunlavey had previously worked together at the development consulting firm MPC Associates, where Brailsford had directed the firm’s sports facilities practice and Dunlavey had served as a project manager. The two had established such an effective practice together, meshing the skillsets and backgrounds of an economist and an architect, that they decided to strike out on their own. Knowing they would need help to complete the anticipated work, they hired Noyes, a young architect fresh out of the University of Virginia as their first employee.
Initially, Brailsford Associates worked with six clients, and sufficient revenues projected to carry them through the first year. Beyond that, the future was anyone’s guess. The firm’s first assignment was to complete a student housing master plan for DePaul University in Chicago. Shortly thereafter, the firm was hired for five additional planning assignments: an athletics and recreation master plan for Duke University with Sasaki Associates; the University of Maryland at College Park recreation center with Sasaki; the Findlay, Ohio recreation center with TMP Associates; a recreation center master plan for the City of Newport News, VA with Forrest Coile Associates; and a recreation center plan at Virginia Tech with Hastings & Chivetta and Ayers / Saint / Gross. This workload was sufficient to compel the firm to hire a second employee, Jeff Turner, a fresh graduate in finance from The George Washington University.
Because the firm delivered only the highest quality service to its clients, it grew and diversified in both the client types it served and the project types it planned and implemented. Today, having completed more than 1,000 assignments in 50 states and many overseas locations, B&D has planned or managed the implementation of more than $35 billion in completed construction projects. Both co-founders--Brailsford and Dunlavey--continue to be actively engaged in serving clients, and Noyes and Turner have grown with the firm to the highest positions of leadership as senior vice presidents.
The Brailsford & Dunlavey Timeline:
1993 Brailsford & Associates is established and hired by its first client, DePaul University. 1995 The name of the firm is changed to Brailsford & Dunlavey. 1995 The DC Jewish Community Center becomes the firm’s first independent comprehensive program management assignment. 1996 Brailsford & Dunlavey is awarded its first major sports assignment, to serve as the team’s representative for the new Baltimore Ravens Stadium. 1999 The University of Alabama at Birmingham becomes the 100th client. 2001 The firm’s growing practice in independent K-12 schools is crowned with the marquis assignment of providing the planning through implementation of a new campus outside of Philadelphia for Episcopal Academy. 2002 The District of Columbia government hires Brailsford & Dunlavey, in a joint venture with McKissack & McKissack, to provide planning through implementation on the new Nationals Park, the first LEED-certified ballpark in the U.S. 2003 Columbus, Ohio office opens. 2005 Chicago, Illinois office opens. 2007 Brailsford & Dunlavey, in a joint venture with McKissack & McKissack, is hired to begin work on the $3.5 billion modernization program for the D.C. Public Schools. 2007 The firm grows to 50 professionals. 2009 Southern California office opens in Irvine, California. 2009 Gallaudet University becomes the 500th client. 2009 Charlotte, North Carolina office opens. 2009 Brailsford & Dunlavey delivers the first off-balance sheet, privatized student recreation center at Marshall University. 2010 Brailsford & Dunlavey is hired, in a joint venture with Walbridge and Fanning Howey, as program manager of the $500.5 million bond program for the modernization of the Detroit Public Schools. 2012 Detroit, Michigan and Atlanta, Georgia offices open. 2012 Brailsford & Dunlavey launches B&D VENUES--a B&D practice group dedicated to the planning and implementation of sports and public assembly facilities. 2013 The firm celebrates its 20 years in business. 2013 Boston, Massachusetts office opens. 2014 New York City, New York office opens. 2015 Austin, Texas office opens.