MATT burow

Matt Burow founded Catalyst Construction in 2004 with a vision for a better brand of construction firm, one that fosters transparency and cultivates strong relationships through a staff of focused, seasoned industry professionals who are personally committed to serve both client and community. Matt’s mission has been to build a firm that utilizes a construction management business model with no self-performing workforce in order to ensure that owners receive competitive bids in all work categories without conflicts of interest among “self-perform” trades. It is a model that allows Catalyst to receive and select from a substantial number of bids on each project in all work categories from both union and non-union trades.

While growing Catalyst into a market juggernaut, Matt was recognized in 2014 as one of The Milwaukee Business Journal’s “40 Under 40”, honoring Milwaukee professionals under the age of 40 who are making great strides in business and community involvement. In 2019, Matt helped found Catalyst Partners with the mission of further expanding Catalyst Construction’s business model by focusing on the pursuit of positively impactful real estate development projects. In partnership with a team of like-minded construction professionals focused on providing maximum service and value to its clients, Matt continues to skillfully steer Catalyst on a path of expansive growth, inspired leadership, and exciting accomplishment.


JOHN ford 

John’s years of real estate development have resulted in an expansive network of strong working relationships throughout the industry and culminated in more than $155 million (and counting!) in completed projects. He possesses a versatile, start-to-finish understanding of the development process including site selection, market demand drivers, municipality coordination, financial, and deal development. His integral involvement in numerous multi-million dollar high-rise office acquisitions throughout the Midwest have been proof-positive that he is intimately familiar with the ever-evolving real estate development landscape and can leverage that acumen into the realization of any project vision.


Prior to co-founding Catalyst Partners, John was the Development Director for one of Milwaukee’s most state-of-the-art high-rise office building that was awarded the Milwaukee Business Journal Real Estate Award’s Project of the Year in 2017. Outside the office, John enjoys spending time with his wife and three children, traveling, running, coaching, and volunteering with the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation and serving on its Southeast Wisconsin chapter’s board of directors.


ADAM arndt

As the President of Catalyst Construction, Adam is responsible for ensuring the most significant development project costs - the hard construction costs - are properly planned and executed. His understanding of “how” buildings are constructed enables Adam to expertly manage secure, reliable construction budgets from the earliest phases of design.

Adam’s ability to craft accurate budgets and constructability solutions for the most challenging design assumptions helps drive in-line costs while maintaining expertly-designed buildings. Throughout his twenty years in construction (the last ten with Catalyst Construction) Adam has developed a depth of creativity, ingenuity, and foundational knowledge that allows him to present optimal solutions for Catalyst Partners’ clients.

Adam’s knowledge of the construction process and long-standing relationships with both development and design teams are key to leading decision making during the pre-development phase. Under Adam’s management, budgets remained balanced, and all stakeholders have a transparent understanding of fund allocation.  From initial concept design through project closeout, Adam’s oversite of every construction detail assures a “no surprises” process and exceptionally successful final development outcome.


MATT smith

Matt Smith comes to Catalyst Partners from SalesSmith, a company he founded in 2000. Matt’s early career included business development experience at a large corporate real estate firm. At Catalyst Partners, his role centers on introducing development projects to potential investment partners as well as promoting the continued growth of Catalyst’s construction business.


In the same manner as his Catalyst teammates, Matt is committed to impacting/assisting Milwaukee’s most vulnerable through his participation with multiple nonprofit boards. He has developed an executive engagement program titled, “Your Legacy”, which he is excited to share with Catalyst Partners and Catalyst Construction clients and partners.


TOM baade

Tom has led dozens of project teams through the planning, preconstruction, construction and occupancy phase of projects with a combined value in excess of $1 billion; including Columbia St. Mary’s Hospital, the Milwaukee Art Museum and General Mitchell International Airport. Tom excels at meeting the challenges of our most difficult projects. He brings a unique perspective to any project having experience in nearly every sector of the built environment from design, to financing, from construction through operations.

833 E Michigan St, Suite 1000 Milwaukee, Wisconsin 53202 

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