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Brian Nichols and his family posing in front of a green landscape

Employee Spotlight: Brian Nichols

Brian Nichols, Senior CADD Designer & Civil War Enthusiast

1. What drew you to Hoyle Tanner?

Hoyle Tanner is a large enough firm to offer stability, yet small enough to be able to know everyone. I came from MaineDOT so I had also formed working relationships with several Hoyle Tanner employees. Being able to get straightforward information about a firm, both good and bad, from someone I trusted was probably the only way I would have had the confidence to move out of my comfort zone.

2. What’s something invaluable you’ve learned here?

Ask for help when you need it. 

3. What’s your favorite time of year to work at Hoyle Tanner & why?

Springtime is my favorite time of year period. Thanks to Hoyle Tanner’s generous telework policy,  I can enjoy springtime all the more. It’s not uncommon for me to take my lunch break outside enjoying a “picnic” lunch with my family or picking away at some yard work project.

4. What’s the coolest thing you are working on & why?

So many of the bridge projects that I work on are in areas in which I frequently travel. Being able to show my family is pretty cool. My kids refer to many of them as “Daddy’s Bridge” which likely under-represents the level of involvement of other team-members.

5. What’s the best thing that’s happened to you so far this week?

I woke up with a roof over my head and a family who loves me.

6. How many different states have you lived in?

Just Maine. In fact I live in the house I grew up in so the furthest move I’ve made has been to change bedrooms.

7. If you could only eat one meal for the rest of your life what would it be?

Grilled cheese sandwiches.

8. What kind of pet do you have and how did you choose to name it?

A cat, Clarabelle. My wife named it.

9. What is a fun or interesting fact about your hometown?

In addition to a few Civil War veterans of note, Jefferson, Maine was also the home of Don Bowman, who played minor league baseball for several seasons back in the late 40s/early 50s and was also one of the five bus drivers in my grade school.

10. What are three things still left on your bucket list?

Become a Licensed Battlefield Guide at Gettysburg. Visit every Presidential gravesite (14 down, 25 to go). Build my dream HO scale model train railroad layout.

11. Name three items you’d take with you to a desert island.

My Bible, a fishing pole, and a derelict antique tractor to tinker on.

12. What characteristic do you admire most in others?

Humility and honesty.

13. How old is the oldest item in your closet?

I’m sure I have some neckties from high school that probably would be put to better use staking tomato plants.

14. Words to live by? Favorite quote? Why?

“If you need a machine and don’t buy it, you pay for it without getting it.” ~ Henry Ford. We may not have literal machinery in the sense that Henry Ford was referring to. Our “machinery” looks like updated skills, newer methods, current software, etc. Investing in it is costly but not investing in it is more so.

15. What did you want to be when you were growing up?

Locomotive Engineer

16. If you were to skydive from an airplane what would you think about on the way down?

Did I remember everything on the “Things to do before landing” checklist? Please note that skydiving is NOT on my bucket list.

About Catie Hall

Catie is a marketing/proposal coordinator at Hoyle Tanner. She works with project managers to create beautifully-designed marketing materials for aviation, bridge, roadway, and utility engineering. She is known for her communication skills and love of editing. An introvert at heart and a natural bibliophile, Catie spends her free time transfixed in novels, finding solace in the mountains, and playing with her dog.