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Restoration earns kudos for Southern Union grad

Restoration earns kudos for Southern Union grad

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Southern Union alum Harlem Watch Tower restoration receives 2020 MASterWorks Award

Jon Parker shows off some pieces of iron work that were used on the Harlem Fire Watch Tower in New York.

Jon Parker’s architectural handiwork extends from Opelika to New York City.

The Southern Union State Community College graduate's work on the Harlem Watch Tower took two and a half years to complete, and it led to the 2020 MASterWorks Award for Best Restoration.

The award is presented by the Municipal Art Society of New York “to pay tribute to projects that make a significant contribution to New York City’s built environment.”

“It is gratifying to watch something come together and know that you played a significant part in it,” Parker said.

Parker has an associate’s degree in Engineering Drafting and Design. He began his career at Allen Architectural Metals in Talledega.

Parker worked the lead draftsman and project manager, working alongside architects who did the installations on the structures being built.

“They are all custom jobs, so every job has its unique challenges. I learn something new each day,” Parker said. “The things I learned at Southern Union really prepared me for my career.”

Applauding Parker’s work, Allen Architectural Metals owner John Allen noted that his employees from Southern Union “are always well prepared.”

“He’s dedicated, loyal, easy to work with no matter what stage of the project,” Allen said. “He has gained a lot of confidence through the years.”

In addition to his Southern Union education, he was exposed to the world of construction through his family. His grandfather and uncles work in the industry, while his father is an artist. 

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