New England Design Hall of Fame 2016; Woodmeister Master Builders
November 15, 2016
Text by Lisa H. Speidel
Today we profile Woodmeister Master Builders 2016 inductees into the 2016 New England Design Hall of Fame.
Ted Goodnow was only nineteen when he started Woodmeister Master Builders (then called Goodnow Brothers). He left high school halfway through, completed his graduation requirements, and had his girlfriend, Kim, pick up his diploma. He embarked on a two-year apprenticeship in a furniture-making shop in Rochester, New York, before striking out on his own. “I was just dumb enough to do it,” he remembers with a laugh.
Today, he and Kim, who is now his wife, run an award-winning, high-end construction firm that numbers 115 employees and comprises four divisions: design collaboration, fine residential construction, custom cabinetry and interiors, and lifestyle and management services.
No job is too small or large for Woodmeister. In fact, Goodnow remembers a longtime client who called on him to fix her dishwasher. While he was there, he also removed a pesky bat. The next thing he knew, the client referred her son to him for a $20-million project.
Woodmeister’s deep portfolio ranges from building an energy-efficient lakeside family compound in New Hampshire to restoring a 100-year-old Jacobean Tudor to overseeing a renovation that joined two units in a luxury condo development in Boston’s South End.
He and his team are drawn to the challenge. “It’s been a passion of mine to rethink how construction is done,” he says. And they thrive on the fact that no two jobs are ever the same. “Every house is new and different; it’s very difficult to template things or make them repeatable.”
Not only is Goodnow committed to the craft, but he’s also intent on mentoring the next generation of master builders, people like him who discover their passion at a young age and have the potential to dream—and build—big.