Learn more about the people behind our local businesses!

Janique Bacharach
Bacharach Construction LLC

Countless companies and leaders tout the importance of 21st-century values in business — priorities such as DEI (diversity, equity, and inclusion), work/life balance, mutual respect, and human sustainability. But very few actually walk the talk. And even fewer do so in the field of construction. Bacharach Construction LLC, a Portland-based general contracting firm, is one such company. A rare breed, led by an equally rare leader, CEO Janique Bacharach.

A paralegal with 14 years of experience in the legal sector, Janique transitioned to construction nine years ago, becoming Bacharach’s CEO in 2014. Demonstrating the type of transparency she inspires in her team, Janique admits her path to leadership required some internal adjustments. “I had to overcome my association that being a focus of attention automatically meant I was diminishing others,” she explains. “This made me diminish myself, which is a fast way to fail at business.” Modeling what she instills in her crew, Janique embraced her shortcomings, pushing herself in new ways, learning new skills and a new way of being that quickly advanced both her company’s growth and her own. As Janique advises her team, “If you don’t do your best, don’t waste time beating yourself up. Analyze what you’ve done well, and what you can improve on. Be willing to be deeply uncomfortable with not knowing everything — secure not in what you know, but in your ability to become.” It’s a guiding philosophy felt at every level of her company.

A testament to Janique’s leadership, Bacharach Construction’s strong cultural foundation supports a thriving business. The company secured its first million-dollar contract in 2021, gained its first government job in 2022, and recently won its first contract with Portland Public Schools. Meanwhile, Bacharach has been hard at work on projects for Central City Concern, Home Forward, and the Oregon Zoo. Confirming her positive influence in the construction sector, Janique has also garnered a nomination for the DJC Women of Vision award.

Yet none of this would be possible without the CEO’s unflagging commitment to her crew and team. As a colleague describes it, “[Bacharach] offers the blue-collar worker a white-collar experience. And by that, I mean dignity.” Coming from the legal sphere, Janique admits she was surprised that construction workers anticipate disregard and disrespect to the degree they do — and that these same workers are so genuinely refreshed by basic kindness, and a mutual regard for our collective humanity. “That shouldn’t be rare,” Janique insists. “But I’m proud to be the difference.” It’s one of the reasons she’s become such a beacon in her field, and in the PBDG community.

Bacharach Construction also walks its talk on diversity, having recently hired its first female and LGBTQAI+-identifying field-crew members, as well as the company’s first candidate from local nonprofit Portland Youth Builders. Holding to a pay-it-forward mindset, Janique has additionally provided assistance to other businesses, helping them make sense of legal contracts. Further proving the rare environment Janique has cultivated at Bacharach Construction, work/life balance is as paramount as personal betterment learned by doing, all within a culture that maintains rigorous high standards without resorting to toxic behaviors to enforce those standards. “I encourage anyone hesitant to do the heavy-lifting on respectful engagement and collaborative problem-solving to discover that these ‘soft skills’ will yield high employee performance, engagement, retention, and a better Portland for all of us.” Janique herself sums it up best: “Kindness makes us all better. But it also pays the bills. And there’s nothing soft about that.”

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