WATSONVILLE — The new year will bring new leadership at Graniterock, but it certainly won’t come from a new face.
The 123-year-old Watsonville-based construction and building materials company announced this week that it has named Peter Lemon as its new president and CEO when the clock strikes midnight on January 1. It will be a new role for Lemon, but the Monterey native won’t need a tour of the facility, as he already knows his way around the office very well.
Lemon first joined the GraniteRock team in 1998 as a summer intern while studying civil engineering at UC Davis. Three summer internships, a college degree and a professional engineer certification later, he was brought on full-time as an estimator and project engineer/manager.
“I am honored to serve our team, customers and community as Chairman and CEO as we continue to build on our achievements of the past 123 years,” Lemon said in a statement. “I am committed to leading this organization to deliver value to our customers and our community through our combined purpose of providing high quality products and construction services.”
Once the studs were in, Lemon’s career at GraniteRock continued to grow. In 2008 he became private works area manager of the construction division, until he was selected in 2012 to run the AR Wilson Quarry at Aromas, a significant asset for the company.
Lemon will spend 10 years leading the mine and overseeing key projects including building and operating a $10 million Wastewater Reduction Plant, a $15 million Premium Sand Plant, standardizing a heavy equipment fleet and overseeing more than 100 craft workers. He had recently assumed the position of Vice President of Logistics.
Lemon will replace Tom Squerry, who has served as CEO since 2012, and will remain a member of GraniteRock’s board of directors.
“Peter not only brings an incredible mix of engineering and business expertise to the role of CEO, but his passion for GraniteRock and our people is unsurpassed,” said Marianne Woolpert, GraniteRock family owner and board member. “The Board has the utmost confidence in Peter and his ability to continue building on GraniteRock’s legacy in the construction industry and in the communities where we live and work.”
This legacy is one of the oldest businesses of any active business in Santa Cruz County and continues to grow. Graniterock worked on the recently completed Highway 1/River Street intersection in Santa Cruz. It has also contributed to the reimagining of Willowbrook Park in Aptos in honor of Sgt. Damon Gutzwiller who was killed in the line of duty in 2020. The project hit the ground running this November.
But Lemon doesn’t just manage work teams. He is also active in the Boy Scouts of America, where he serves as leader of Troop 2 and Pack 126 in Monterey.