Patrick Davis: How He Used His Military Skills and Experience to Create a Construction Powerhouse

20 under 40: Inspiring Leaders to Watch


Whether you’re looking at installing an underground utility system, or getting some land cleared for new sub-divisions, or simply looking for a newly constructed home, if you’re in the Florida Panhandle, chances are that you have already heard of Green Energy Contracting (GEC). Established in 2008 and taken over by Phillips Capital Partners in 2011, GEC is the leading full-service site work and underground utility contractor with the ability to also act as a developer or partner in real estate developments, in the area.

President and CEO, Patrick Davis states, “The purpose of our service is simple: to develop and construct high-quality projects in the Florida Panhandle… We strive to ensure that the landscape and development of the Emerald Coast are done in excellence.” Armed with the latest engineering research and technology, fortified with tested and trusted processes, and executed by industry-leading professionals, this company is on the mission to “guarantee solutions our clients can trust.

Providing Superior Site Solutions

Green Energy Contracting is a site construction and underground utility contractor, fully equipped to put manpower and heavy equipment into the field and build projects across the panhandle. The company is a market leader in developing and building infrastructure for subdivisions, as well as new homes under the Phillips Homes brand, all along the Emerald Coast. 

“Like many developers, we begin with a concept land plan, pro-forma, and a strategy to attack entitlement challenges,” says Patrick. “But what sets us apart from others is our ability to bring the idea home–all the way through infrastructure and residential construction, and completion of the project with fresh new landscaping–all using in-house resources.”   

Over the years, GEC’s diverse portfolio of contracting solutions has been used by private developers and government contractors, including the US Military. The company’s capability to provide their clients with in-house fulfillment of almost all their needs provides GEC the flexibility and the monetary advantage that other company’s do not possess. 

“At the core of our service infrastructure is my team of around 100 trailblazing employees which includes research and procurement experts, construction cost estimators and project managers, and tradesmen that build the confidence of our partners, clients, and local officials,” shares Patrick. With hundreds of years of combined experience, this team of professionals goes above and beyond the call of duty, to guarantee the success of every contract they are hired for. Thus, whether they are clearing land for new subdivisions, installing underground utilities for government contracts, or researching best practices for sustainability/restoration projects— Green Energy Contracting is becoming one of the leading civil contractors on the Florida panhandle. 

Patrick Davis

“Our company will continue to absorb or create other companies that can be vertically integrated with us. This lets us be less reliant on lower-tier service providers”

The Modern Marine

Patrick joined the Marine Corps after high school and served as an infantry non-commissioned officer in the 2nd Marine Division and deployed to Kosovo in 2001, and Iraq in 2003. His military experience equipped him with leadership skills including critical decision making, navigating crisis, accountability, and discipline. These capabilities helped to turn around the fortunes and reputation of GEC which were less than admirable. Today, with several successful projects that laid a new foundation in excellence for Green Energy, GEC has transformed into a catalytic force on the Emerald Coast. “One of our greatest assets has been building upon our foundation and becoming a full-service conglomerate where we outsource as little as possible and construct in-house service fulfillment that has resulted in our new divisions,” he says.

Patrick believes that the most important thing to the company is retaining authentic business relationships. “The relationships that were made with various clients and partners have led to multi-year contracts and repeat customers …We believe that this model will prove advantageous for many years.”

 Investments in relationships extend to his employees as well. Patrick feels that the competition that GEC faces is not for contracts or deals but for attracting suitable employees. However, he is optimistic that they can beat the workforce squeeze by fostering camaraderie, raising motivation, and improving the overall work environment which will enable GEC to recruit top-notch management, staff, and tradesmen. 

Beating the Covid Effect

Not just has the pandemic impacted recruitments of quality workers but also created an unprecedented ripple effect from the supply chain disruption that the previous generation of executives has never seen. Covid-19 made it difficult to get construction materials on time, hard to get quotes, and nearly impossible to get vendors to hold material pricing because of the extremely volatile construction materials market. However, GEC judiciously used social media as a tool to recruit workers. Additionally, they utilized private groups on social media platforms to communicate with their workforce through productive and innovative employee experiences. “Social media affords us opportunity to showcase who we are in hopes of staying positive and visible to both potential clients and employees” and then again, compels employees to higher levels of accountability. 

Industry Trends and GEC Projects

Patrick is wired to the latest developments in the industry and keeps his “ear to the ground” by constantly communicating with other industry executives- even competitors. The team at GEC keeps abreast of industry regulations and changes by using national market resources and connecting with government policy experts. Additionally, they review cases studies to see how the heavy hitters are managing projects and challenges. 

Patrick feels that “as a country, and especially in my industry, we are going to continue to see these new challenges that require creativity and resilience to overcome. We should all be ready for more complex social trials in the future.” Therefore, his vision of the growth of the trajectory of GEC is by promoting a culture of flexibility and resilience in the company. GEC is promoting a work environment that “shifts the mindset of personnel from an emphasis of efficiency to an emphasis of resiliency, enabling them to react quickly to changes in the market.”

GEC finds ways to self-perform processes rather than relying on other companies by vertical integration. “Our company will continue to absorb or create other companies that can be vertically integrated with us. This lets us be less reliant on lower-tier service providers,” he explains. The company has recently partnered with BL Harbert, one of America’s top federal contractors for the restoration of the water distribution system at the Naval Support Activity Facility in Panama City. 

Fun Times!

Patrick is an outdoorsman and loves saltwater fishing, upland bird hunting, gardening, and farming. If he is not out on his boat, he’s exploring the woods. He has four energetic Brittany Spaniels and has recently ventured into raising quail and pheasants. That these activities enable him to spend time with family and friends is a happy consequence. It is thus natural that he would choose Jose Salvador Alvarenga, the Salvadoran fisherman that spent 14 months adrift in the Pacific Ocean as an ideal dinner companion. “I bet I could listen to his stories for days. The strength of mind and character he maintained is beyond inspiring,” he says.


“For GEC, social responsibility is just as important as safety and quality control in the workforce,” says Patrick. The company gives back to the community by offering compensation and benefits packages that help feed the regional economy. GEC is also looking at ways to reduce its “dumpster footprint.” In the past, a certain amount of construction material was considered acceptable but the company is shifting its mindset by rewarding waste-reduction initiatives, like incentivizing creative reuse of scrap material. This reduces their exposure to supply chain difficulties caused by the pandemic, and they find that the less they scrap: the less they purchase, thus reducing the burden on resources.  

In Conclusion

 “I believe that our corporate legacy is a result of our leadership trajectory, past, present, and future. We serve our employees, our clients, and our community, and every interaction over the years will shape our legacy.” 

Amen to that!