James.qxp Nov Dec 2018 web - Page 22

By Cindy Morley
alking into Jim Croy’s
office in Smyrna is like
walking into a living
testament to an amazing
career that has spanned across
all aspects of engineering.
The golden shovels standing
side by side in wooden racks. The
many pictures and certificates lining
the office walls. The miniature models
encased in glass. Each one tells the
story of a career as a design engineer, a
project manager, a program coordinator
and the principal-in-charge on hundreds
of projects. The projects have ranged from roads and highways,
to water and wastewater facilities and even airports.
When it comes to engineering projects, this captain of
industry has done it all. And much of it has been in his native
Cobb County, where many say he is responsible for paving the
county’s path to the future
In our exclusive interview, Croy looks back on the career
that spans decades and that led him to his current role as
founder and managing partner of Croy Engineering. And he
smiles as he travels down memory lane.
Early in his career, Croy says he was given a piece
of advice by a former friend and business partner. He
heeded the words from the now-late John Williams— a
legendary businessman himself. “I’ll never forget— he
told me to always have fun at what I do. And I do.
Some days are probably more fun than others, but I
do enjoy what I do.”
That’s obvious when he speaks about the
many projects he had a hand in. He says he’s
having so much fun that, even as he closes in on his 70th
birthday, he has no plans to retire. “Absolutely not. I have no
plans to slow down anytime soon.”
Anyone who knows Jim Croy believes that.
He grew up on a 200-acre farm with livestock and
cornfields in east Cobb on Jamerson Road— a small dirt road
that remained unpaved until his high school days at
Sprayberry. Croy went on to major in civil engineering at
Georgia Tech— earning his degree in 1971— and soon went to
work for Cobb County as a drainage and sewage engineer.
Although he didn’t know it then, that was the beginning of a
career that would lead him to oversee the future of growth of
his native Cobb County.
Croy became division manager of road maintenance for
Cobb County in 1986— a position he held until 1992 when he
became the county’s director of transportation. While serving
in that job (a position he held until 1999) he was responsible
for maintaining 2,000 miles of roads and 200 bridges
throughout the county, as well as many miles of sidewalks
and trails. He played a key role in starting the county bus
service in 1989. He also oversaw the state’s fourth-busiest
airport and was responsible for building major road projects
including the East-West connector, the West Cobb loop,
Barrett Parkway and Johnson Ferry Road.
Croy was responsible for all divisions of transportation in
Cobb County, as well as the implementation of a $1.3 billion local
sales tax program for roads including engineering design,
environmental, right-of way acquisition and construction. He also
provided program management for the Cumberland CID and the
Town Center CID. In this capacity, he programmed the funding,
working with the Georgia Department of Transportation (GDOT)
and the Atlanta Regional Commission (ARC).
“Our team did about $1.2 billion worth of
project work during the 1990s in Cobb
County,” he said. “We had a lot of new
subdivision construction going on and
there was a lot of traffic and a lot of
traffic issues.”
In 1999, former Gov. Roy Barnes
chose Croy to be deputy director of
the Georgia Regional Transportation
Authority. A year later, Croy moved
into the role of executive director of
the Georgia State Road and
Tollway Authority, where
he worked on the
Northern Arc project
and advocated for
methods to accelerate
projects through
bond initiatives.
continued on page 24
N OV E M B E R / D E C E M B E R 2 0 1 8
N OV E M B E R / D E C E M B E R 2 0 1 8


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