Close this search box.


Talent Acquisition Further Ignites Growth in Kansas City Market

OLATHE, KS – Manning Construction Company founder, Tom Manning, and several long-time team members, have officially joined the ranks of Russell’s Kansas City office.

Nearing the end of his career, Tom Manning began exploring options on how to begin winding-down his successful 27-year-old business. After hearing the news of Russell’s acquisition of Merit General Contractors in January 2022, and researching our company, Tom reached out to Russell to begin conversations on how he could be involved in our strategic growth plans.

Tom Manning – Executive VP

“With no additional family involved in the business, other than myself and my wife, we wanted to find a way to ensure our remaining employees had a place to land, as we begin seriously considering retirement. We really didn’t want to just close our doors and leave our employees to find new jobs. That just didn’t feel right. After hearing about the Merit Construction acquisition, I reached out to Damen Trebilcock of Russell, who I knew from a past project. Damen introduce me to Jim Russell, and after our first meeting I knew this was going to be a great fit,” stated Tom Manning.

Through the acquisition of Merit General Contractors in 2022, Russell began offering expanded services, including real estate development, efficient project management and use of advanced Virtual Design & Construction technologies in the Kansas City market. The addition of Tom Manning, his team, and Manning Construction’s extensive portfolio of work in the K-12 education and hospitality market further complements Russell Merit’s already growing industrial, retail and office resume.

Sam Russell, the Director of Kansas City shared, “We are excited to welcome Tom and several of his long-term team members to the team! We look forward to building off the legacy established by Manning Construction and developing stronger relationships with customers and subcontractors in the Kansas City region.”

Currently, Manning Construction is serving as the Construction Manager as Agent on the $9 MM addition to the De Soto High School Performing Arts Center in De Soto, KS. This 24,100 square foot addition includes a new 763 seat performance theater with orchestra pit, dressing rooms, storage, and a 10,300 square foot renovation of the existing auditorium with classrooms, dust collection system, and coffee shop. This project officially kicked off in March 2021 and is scheduled for completion in August 2022. Russell Merit will ensure the successful completion of this exciting project.

Manning Construction will be vacating their previous office location at 1708 E. 123rd Street and joining Russell at its current office location in Overland Park, KS.


Downloadable Press Release: Russell Merit – Tom Manning Announcement – 5.2022