2017 DM Honoree: George Pusser, owner and president of Cos Cob, CT-based Cornerstone Contracting, isn’t what one would call a hands-off manager. Instead, he is deeply involved in each and every one of his company’s projects, from start to finish. “Our team is dedicated to consistently exceeding each client’s demands and expectations with incomparably high standards, and supported by our unique client-focused on-site management approach,” he says. His in-house project managers, cabinetmakers and carpenters also make a difference. “By employing our own crews, Cornerstone is best able to control quality, budget and schedule.”
Born in Utah, Pusser looks close to home as well as the West for ideas. “I draw inspiration from my wife, an accomplished interior designer, and from Western magazines, as I love the rustic and open air style,” says Pusser. In fact, his dream project would be building a hunting and fishing lodge in the mountains. “I have always had a passion for hunting and fishing, and I spend my vacations doing just that ever year,” he says. For his dream lodge, he would use antique timbers, combined with state-of-the-art technology. “It would be located somewhere out West, with lots of land and nature,” he adds.
Closer to home, the company has completed more than 90 projects over the past 25 years. One memorable project in upstate New York took 10 years to complete. It involved constructing one large recreational barn from 11 antique barns purchased throughout the northeast. “They were dismantled and reassembled on site to blend in with the natural flow of the property,” he explains. “We built a half-court basketball gym on one level and a boxing ring on the next.” Then there were the various swimming pools that made up the spa and fitness area. The final product had amazing views of the lake, river and mountains from each floor of the barn, making it an ideal place to observe the changing seasons. But even smaller, straightforward projects hold his interest. “Every project is unique and represents the style of our client,” he says.
Pusser is not only involved in the day-to-day operations of his company but also is active on various local community projects. Cornerstone has worked with The Second Congregational Church in Greenwich, CT, renovating the church steeple as well as creating wheelchair ramps at local area churches. Plus, he is involved on an ongoing basis with The Greenwich Historical Society, along with Charles Hilton Architects. “We are installing all of the landmark signs throughout Greenwich.” Already they have participated in three historical location installations, with seven more to follow.
“Giving back is thanks for the 25 years of success we have been blessed
with,” says Pusser. “I want Cornerstone to continue to be involved in our
Favorite color: Blue
Go-to cocktail: Tito’s and Sprite
Favorite home accessory: Anything in Western décor
Clothing designer you love: Christian Dior
Designer who inspires you: Frank Lloyd Wright
Best museum: MoMA
Favorite iconic home: The Vanna Venturi House by Robert Venturi