Our people

We invest in our employees, fostering the spirit of collaboration to grow and expand while maintaining our commitment to a corporate culture that embodies open communication, passion, and personal growth.

With a diverse and talented multi-generational team, we continue to strive toward total client satisfaction and excellence in all projects.

Our product may be buildings, but our strength is in our people.

Bill Zister, B.ASc., MBA

Chief Executive Officer

Bill Zister, B.ASc., MBA

Chief Executive Officer

Bill joined Collaborative Structures in April 2018 with over 17 years of construction experience. Bill is a proven leader with a track record for exemplifying professionalism, encouraging collaboration and fostering communication.

Accreditations & Affiliations:

  • University of New Brunswick – Masters of Business Administration
  • University of Waterloo – Bachelor of Applied Science – Civil Engineering

Josh Blackler, G.S.C.

Partner, Vice President

Josh Blackler, G.S.C.

Partner, Vice President

After graduating from Conestoga College’s, Architecture – Construction Engineering Technology (ACET) program, Joshua joined the CSL team in May 2006 as a Junior Estimator. As CSL was still in its infancy, Joshua drew on the experience of David Timlock and senior Project Managers to develop his skills.

With an aptitude for logically solving problems and a strong technical understanding of construction, estimating was a natural fit for Joshua. As CSL began to grow organically, so did Joshua’s ability, stepping into his new position of Chief Estimator after only seven short years with the firm. In this new position, Joshua now managed a team of estimators, reviewing all estimates and bids prepared by the company. In 2012, David Timlock invited Joshua to become a shareholder, and upon accepting, became the firm’s second partner. In 2014, Joshua stepped into his current position as Vice President.

In addition to his role on the Management Team, Joshua is responsible for the majority of the firm’s purchasing and contract negotiations, both with owners and subcontractors.

Accreditations & Affiliations

  • Conestoga College – Advanced Diploma: Architecture – Construction Engineering Technology
  • OACETT – Certified Engineering Technologist
  • Canadian Construction Association – Gold Seal Certified, Estimator
  • Canadian Construction Association – Construction Estimator Level 1 & 2, 2006
  • Canadian Construction Association – Project Estimator Level 1 & 2, 2006
  • Member – Conestoga College Bachelor of Applied Technology (Honours) – Architecture – Project and Facility Management –
  • Program Advisory Committee

Jim Blair, C.E.T., G.S.C.

Partner, Director of Business Development

Jim Blair, C.E.T., G.S.C.

Partner, Director of Business Development

Since his graduation from the Conestoga College ACET program with Honours, Jim joined CSL in September 2009 and continued to build on his childhood passion for construction.

Starting as a Project Coordinator under his professional mentor, David Timlock, Jim quickly moved up the ranks within CSL to Project Manager, Construction Management specialty, and is personally responsible for tens of millions of dollars worth of construction contracts at any given time. Jim was invited to join the partnership in 2013, and continues to work alongside other senior management in the continual development and growth of our Company.

New business development is also a major deployment of Jim’s resources here at CSL, connecting with current and prospective clients to build relationships and unveil the best construction delivery method for any development.

In addition to PM and Bus. Dev. responsibilities, Jim heads our Internal Continuing Education & Training program within the company, regularly meeting with and organizing staff (Field & Office) in courses and certification programs to ensure our team is on the cutting edge of the industry to best serve our clients’ expectations.

Accreditations & Affiliations

  • Conestoga College – Advanced Diploma (Honours): Architecture – Construction Engineering Technology (Co-Op)
  • Canadian Construction Association – Gold Seal Certified
  • OACETT – Certified Engineering Technologist
  • Director – Ontario General Contractors Association (OGCA)
  • Member – Conestoga College Architecture Construction Engineering Program- Advisory Committee
  • Chairman – Grand Valley Construction Associate – Leaders in Construction Committee

Paul McKenna, B.Sc

Construction Operations Manager

Paul McKenna, B.Sc

Construction Operations Manager

Paul joined the Collaborative Structures team in April 2019, as Project Manager, after a successful 17 year career in the United Kingdom. He possesses extensive knowledge of project management across the institutional and commercial sectors, with a specialty in multi-phased construction planning.

Paul holds a degree in Construction Management with a background rooted in dimensional engineering, which affords him the skills to develop a keen understanding of the design of the project. Throughout his career, Paul has developed a reputation for delivering high-quality projects on time and on budget, while maintaining impeccable health and safety standards.

Accreditations & Affiliations

  • University of Bolton – Bachelor of Science – Construction Management
  • Stockport College – Higher National Certificate – Building Studies
  • Stockport College – Advanced General National Vocational Qualifications – Construction & Built Environment

Justin Bender, G.S.C.

Partner, Director of Field Operations

Justin Bender, G.S.C.

Partner, Director of Field Operations

Justin Bender joined our team full time after graduating from the Architecture – Construction Engineering Technology Co-op program at Conestoga College in 2008.

Justin has grown his talents from within the company, working his way from a Superintendent Apprentice to now managing all of CSL’s field staff and Supervisors. He is also a licensed carpenter, and Gold Seal Certified through the Canadian Construction Association.

Justin possesses extensive knowledge of field operations and the mechanics of an operating construction site. He offers cost-effective methods of executing and planning work on site, resulting in efficiencies and cost savings to the client. His experience includes several industrial and commercial expansions, high and mid-rise residential developments, OPP and fire department facilities, heritage restorations, and museums.

Accreditations & Affiliations

  • Conestoga College – Diploma: Architecture – Construction Engineering Technology Co-op
  • Canadian Construction Association – Gold Seal Certified
  • OACETT – Certified Engineering Technologist