Women in Construction Interview - Catherine Mulkerin

Catherine Mulkerin
C/M Development & Design | Phoenix, AZ

“There is a lot to be said about a woman who is able to conduct herself with grace amongst a crowd of chaos, while maintaining an unwavering level of confidence.”

Catherine is the owner and founder of multiple companies; C/M Development & Design, CONSIST, SupplAI, The Ex-Box Foundation Inc., and The GFIC. She was raised in Tucson, Arizona and moved to Phoenix in 2017.

Feeling creatively stifled during COVID, she decided to invest everything she had on herself and established her current real estate development firm; C/M Development & Design, from a vacant piece of land. Her passion for innovation became a mission to pioneer ‘The Modern-Day Industrial Revolution,” allowing her firm to create a focused niche in economic and supply chain infrastructure by redeveloping and strength the foundations that America’s supply chain was built from. In the last few years C/M has been preparing to break ground on multiple development sites across Arizona. Her developments aim to establish the economic value within underserved regions of the state, to bring sustainable development with infrastructure that creates lasting benefits and tax revenue for the community. In collaboration with multiple state and federal entities, Catherine plans to break ground on her sites in late 2024-early 2025.

Question: What is one characteristic that you believe every woman in construction should possess?

Composure. There is a lot to be said about a woman who is able to conduct herself with grace amongst a crowd of chaos, while maintaining an unwavering level of confidence.

4 years ago, none of my deals or projects were going the way I expected, I was juggling 100 different tasks ⏤ while harmonizing my personal life and realizing that self-funding your dreams is capital-intensive; this truly tested me. I can honestly say I’ve had my fair share of mental break downs.

Even amidst a breakdown, without composure and unwavering confidence, it becomes impossible for me to find the right solutions, lead my development team, or inspire the people around me.


Question: Do you have a mentor? Are you a mentor to someone else?

I have LOTS of mentors! If I didn’t ask for help and guidance, I wouldn’t be the leader I am today. For me to be the best, well-rounded version of myself— I had to gain knowledge from mentors in different industries that weren’t always applicable to what I was doing. In addition, having both male and female mentors allowed me to see the contrast and perspectives in life and business.

Giving someone the time and patience that it takes to watch you grow is a rather selfless role to take on. My plan is to pass this knowledge onto others one day.


Question: Why do you enjoy what you do? What would make it better?

I am passionate about what I do because I have a WHY behind it. At the root of this was my desire to change the world and break boundaries within the industry, so I found a career to act as the foundational platform for the things I value. With value and intentions behind the things you do, you’ll always find fulfillment.

If there was anything I could do to make my career more enjoyable?

I’ve recently started keeping an extremely regimented schedule so I can have a better work life balance. Like most entrepreneurs, I want to fit 48 hours’ worth of work into a 9-5 window. With unrealistic expectations, it’s easy for me to get burnt out, which creates resentment to stay inspired.


Question: What is the most important lesson you have learned in your career thus far, how did you learn from it?

When you believe in something whole-heartedly, it becomes this battle between “If you’re passionate” or “If you’re stubborn.” Both can cloud your judgment to see the actual feasibility for something.

My passion became a weapon used against me. I was consumed with just getting it built, so I made decisions that I thought would get me there sooner and with the wrong people. I’ve learned now that vision and stubbornness can work to your benefit. Now I understand how to have a realistic vision about development and the stubbornness to fight for a feasible deal.