From an early age, Daniel Conley knew he wanted to get involved in construction.
“I’ve always loved construction, even as a young kid, seeing backhoes digging was really cool,” Conley said. “I had Tonka trucks and a whole fleet of equipment.”
Fast forward to college and the Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology was a natural choice, where Conley earned his bachelor’s degree in civil engineering in 2005.
From there, Jim Burdick, who served as president of Wabash Valley Asphalt from 2005 to 2015, hired Conley into the company, where Conley has remained for the past 17 years.
“Daniel has held positions of increasing importance over the years and has become the youngest executive ever to receive the title and responsibility of Vice President of Operations” for Wabash Valley Asphalt, said John Collett, Milestone Regional Manager. Contractors South LLC.
Collett is the former chairman of Wabash Valley Asphalt, owned by The Heritage Group which in 2021 merged Wabash Valley Asphalt with two other construction companies in the group. Wabash Valley Asphalt has been renamed Milestone Contractors South LLC.
“Daniel has a calm disposition and doesn’t seek the spotlight,” Collett said. “He volunteers his personal time and contributes to the community of Terre Haute, almost always anonymous and behind the scenes. However, anyone who pays attention sees a calm, thoughtful and generous leader of his community,” said Collett, who appointed Conley, 39.
After five years with Wabash Valley Asphalt, Conley earned his professional engineering license, which involves having at least four years of experience and passing a series of tests. Conley is now director of operations for Milestone Contractors, which serves the Wabash Valley.
This construction experience is a key advantage as a member of the Terre Haute Regional Airport Board of Directors.
Conley replaced Darryl Huyett on that board. Huyett was also a Rose-Hulman graduate who worked at the Indiana Department of Transportation and Wabash Valley Asphalt.
“Darryl has been a huge help to me in every aspect. I really enjoy serving on the airport board,” Conley said. “Having a background in construction and engineering is an advantage for this position because there is always something going on at the airport and I can bring a technical side to the board,” he said.
In addition to building, Conley has a passion for tennis. He played at Terre Haute North Vigo High School, where he graduated in 2001. And then he continued to play at Rose-Hulman, where he played both singles and doubles.
“I played under Coach Jim Cook at Terre Haute North and I played for Dan Hopkins for four years at Rose,” Conley said of his tennis career. “I got to know (Hopkins) through the summer youth program at Terre Haute.”
Conley said he plans to stay in Terre Haute.
“My family is from here and that’s where I grew up,” he said. “I love the small town feel and it’s a great place to raise a family. My two kids go to St. Patrick’s School and my wife works at THSB (The Hometown Savings Bank). ‘really love Terre Haute and don’t plan on leaving.”
Daniel and his wife, Terri, have a daughter, Erica, 9, who is in fourth grade, and a son, Andrew, 8, who is in second grade.
Learn more about the other 2022 winners 12 under 40 in line.