Leaders in Building Communities

Greg Cannito, Corvias Solutions

Greg Cannito

“Citizen Athletes”

Editors’ Note

Greg Cannito oversees the application of Corvias’ innovative public-private partnership (P3) model to challenges faced by public sector institutions nationwide. He was instrumental in the development of The Clean Water Partnership, a first-of-its-kind P3 pilot program that will address federal environmental regulatory requirements for stormwater management in Prince George’s County. Previously the Senior Vice President of Program Development of Corvias Group, Cannito successfully managed operations representing a total development budget of over $500M at Fort Meade and Aberdeen Proving Ground in Maryland, as well as the development of Reece Crossings, the Army’s first-ever on-post apartments for junior unaccompanied service members.

Company Brief

Corvias Group (corvias.com) is a privately owned company that strives to tackle complex, large-scale challenges through trusted partnerships that put client interests first, producing sustainable long-term solutions by focusing more on performance than profit. The company works on behalf of the U.S. military, and public and private higher education institutions, as well as municipal and state governments to develop tailored solutions for many of the nation’s most challenging infrastructure deficiencies caused by chronic underinvestment. Their mission is to materially improve the lives of the people their projects touch. Corvias Group is headquartered in East Greenwich, Rhode Island.

Why were you drawn to the military and did your time in the service affect your decision to join Corvias?

When I joined the military, I not only wanted to challenge myself, but more importantly, I wanted the experience of being a part of something larger and more meaningful that required a level of personal sacrifice and commitment. I was, and have continued to be, drawn to the core values and the “Esprit de Corps” of the United States Marine Corps, as they have served as a foundation for both my personal and professional life. I found this same sense of empowerment and eagerness to serve among people at Corvias but in a business setting, so it was a natural fit for me.

This was evident in Corvias’ mission – to directly impact and improve the quality of life of our country’s service members and their families – and the core values enforced by John Picerne himself, our owner: to be the best partner, the best provider of service, and to give back to the communities we serve.

Do you believe that Corvias and the military have a similar sense of values and a commitment to maintaining their missions and core principles?

One of Corvias’ key successes has been the alignment of the company’s mission and culture with that of its partners. The military is fundamentally built on a foundation of respect and excellence, and a focus on supporting those in need. As a company, Corvias does not sell a professional skill or commodity, such as engineering, construction, or financial services, but instead centers itself on problem solving, innovation, and empathy.

At first, working for Corvias allowed me to give back and specifically support the military community, but over the past 14 years, we have broadened our definition of the local community to give back to so many others. We have focused on solving deeper challenges that are pervasive in large institutions in any community, such as economic development or environmental issues.

How do you describe Corvias’ mission to others?

The problems we look to solve for public universities, private colleges, the military, or municipalities (to name a few), are all similar. It’s not about what we’re building; it’s about our approach to developing a long-term solution that delivers quality service and benefits the community in more ways than one.

I like to use the term “Citizen Athletes” when describing who we are and the types of people we employ. It implies we feel a greater sense to give back and are thankful to have the opportunity, as a company in the private sector, to participate in developing long-term, sustainable solutions for our government partners that put their interests at the forefront.

Has your personal desire to give back evolved since you joined Corvias and how has it grown with the company?

It’s not as much that my desire to give back has evolved, but working at Corvias and with John Picerne has helped me understand how I can make an even greater impact in my efforts to give.