Real Estate: JOHN R. LAWSON II
EXECUTIVE CHAIRMAN, W.M. JORDAN CO., NEWPORT NEWS
A Newport News native, Lawson has been with construction firm W.M. Jordan for more than 45 years. Lawson’s late father co-founded the company, which reaped more than $649 million in revenue for 2020.
He started there in 1975 as a field engineer after graduating from Virginia Tech and took over as president and CEO in 1986. In 2018, Lawson moved into the role of executive chairman. That same year, Lawson was named Virginia Business magazine’s Business Person of the Year, due to his involvement in high-profile projects such as the restoration of the Cavalier Hotel in Virginia Beach and construction of Gold Key | PHR’s Hilton Norfolk The Main hotel. Currently, W.M. Jordan and Suffolk Construction Co. are general contractors of the $500 million HeadWaters Resort & Casino in Norfolk, which is scheduled to open as soon as March 2023.
Lawson is a former Virginia Tech rector and a recipient of the William H. Ruffner Medal, the university’s highest honor. Tech’s Myers-Lawson School of Construction is named in part for him. In Hampton Roads, he serves on boards for Christopher Newport University, Hampton Roads Community Foundation, the Children’s Hospital of The King’s Daughters, and The Mariners’ Museum and Park.