Lisa Knight, owner of DVapple Logistics LLC, started her company in 2019. DVapple specializes in concrete flatwork, sidewalks, and concrete steps.
Builders Exchange of Michigan: How did you earn your first dollar?
Lisa Knight: Completing a sidewalk and steps.
BX: What drew you to the construction industry?
LK: The fact that there were very few females in the field, and also the limited number of minority people in the field, and the inequities that exist within.
BX: What does a typical day look like on the job for you?
LK: I am up at 5:00 AM to pray and have coffee, I check my emails around 6:30, and then have conversations with my partner about the day. We talk multiple times a day about projects and where we want to be. I then begin my meetings around 7:30. I’m constantly looking at ways to be innovative, creative, and on the cutting edge of business.
BX: What makes DVapple Logistics special?
LK: We are 100% minority-owned and 51% female-owned!
BX: What’s the best career advice you’ve ever heard?
LK: Follow your heart, but take your brain with you. Utilize those around you who have wisdom and experience and work hard. There will always be people around to tell you what you cannot do!
BX: If you could master one new skill right now, what would it be?
LK: Being an effective cost estimator and to be able to be savvier in negotiations.
BX: What were your goals when you began your position at DVapple? How have you achieved them?
LK: My goal was to become a leader in this industry, and to help others who look like me achieve their goals. I have achieved this through the many avenues that I operate currently. I work with young people to educate them on the opportunities that are available for them, and how to achieve them. I try to instill in them that there is nothing they cannot do and that excuses are the nails that built the house of failure.
BX: What advice would you give to other women who would like to go into the same career field you’ve chosen?
LK: Don’t let what you see stop you from dreaming.
BX: What can other members of the construction community do to encourage women to participate in the construction industry?
LK: Become true allies in this work. When you say you want to help someone become successful, make sure you can follow that up with actionable items, which include time, money, and experience.
BX: What challenges have you overcome and what experiences have you had to get to where you are today?
LK: My challenge is being black in America. I understand that every day. However, I have never let adversity stop me from trying. If I can’t do it one way, I will seek out another until I find a way in.
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