Founded in 2006 Cellar Ridge is a leader in green building in Oregon, headquartered in McMinnville. Its custom buildings embody the passion and ethics of co-owners John Mead and Carson Benner, pairing cutting edge green building science with comfort and beauty. Cellar Ridge consistently achieves sustainable and energy efficient certifications by incorporating appropriate sustainable building technologies into its work including water conservation, energy efficiency, environmentally responsible materials, indoor air quality measures, and sustainable design practices. Throughout Portland and Yamhill County, primarily within the Willamette Valley, Cellar Ridge has become the primary go-to contractor within the local wine industry, building tasting rooms and production facilities for prominent wineries. Specializing in buildings that are healthy for both the inhabitants and the environment, Cellar Ridge is committed to building a greener community, one building at a time. But don’t take our word for it. Come visit our projects to see for yourself and become acquainted with the Cellar Ridge difference.
John Mead, founder of Cellar Ridge Construction, brings a unique blend of experience and knowledge to the Green Building industry. John is a fourth generation carpenter/builder. John and his wife, Jenny Berg, live in a restored historic home in McMinnville with daughters Alaina and Mallory. At a young age John could be found building forts and tree houses with his friends, and worked construction jobs with his father as soon as he could swing a hammer.
John attained his Bachelor’s Degree in Mechanical Engineering from Oregon State University. With course work in structural mechanics, thermodynamics, heat transfer and material science, John’s technical background gives him an in-depth understanding of the physics behind building science. Volunteering with the city of McMinnville Budget Committee and Historic Landmark Committee, John feels strongly about giving back to the community.Pursuing his interest in business, John obtained his Master’s Degree in Business Administration from George Fox University: A program with an emphasis on ethical leadership. With Cellar Ridge Construction,
John is fulfilling a life-long dream to own and operate a business, while also leaving a positive impact on the world. As you may have discerned from the winding path that has brought him back to his roots as a builder, John is not your run-of-the-mill general contractor. But as we mentioned before, Cellar Ridge Construction is not your normal building company; and our projects are far from ordinary.
The Benner family consists of Carson and Georgine, daughter Paige, and son Prescott. The Benner’s have lived in the McMinnville area since the early 1990s. Leaders in the community, the Benners have been involved with many volunteer organizations. Carson is a member of the McMinnville School Board Budget Committee, worked extensively with Citizens for Good Education, and is a board member of the McMinnville Education Foundation. Additionally, Carson serves on the Board of Directors of McMinnville’s Habitat for Humanity.
In his previous role as Vice President of Material for a locally headquartered international airline, Carson Benner brings a unique perspective to the construction industry. From a company where reliability, quality and performance can be a matter of survival, Carson brings a high level of attention to detail to the partnership. The ultimate professional, Carson helps direct Cellar Ridge Construction towards ever higher levels of service and excellence.
Doug Mead (Emeritus)
The Mead family has strong Oregon roots with four generations residing in the Beaverton and Aloha metro regions. Doug and Marge Mead currently live in Aloha, having raised their three children: Sydney, Chris and John.
Doug Mead brings a wealth of construction experience to the table with over 39 years working in the construction field, specializing in design, field supervision, and project management. With a multitude of projects, including commercial and residential construction, Doug brings a tremendous knowledge of building systems. A proven trouble shooter, with an eye for creative solutions, Doug applies his skill and experience as the primary Chief Architect software operator. Recently retired, Doug spends much of his time advising Cellar Ridge and providing his valuable seasoned experience to our mix of knowledge.
A native McMinnvillian, Zack is enthusiastic about Cellar Ridge, and it shows. Zack joined the Cellar Ridge team after completing his studies in Political Science, History, and Economics at the University of Oregon. Filled with boundless wonder and amazement for the built environment, you can often find Zack on a jobsite examining just what makes Cellar Ridge projects green. An ardent student of all things historical, Zack enjoys reading, studying Henry Clay, running, playing handball, working on his ping-pong serves, listening to records, and hiking.
Zack loves his hometown and community. Along with his full time work with Cellar Ridge as Director of Marketing and Research, Zack is vigorously working to contribute to the community by serving on the Board of Directors for the McMinnville Downtown Association, the Board of Directors for the Yamhill Enrichment Society, and the Yamhill County Parks and Recreation Board of Directors. Additionally, Zack currently is the President of the McMinnville City Club.
Zack can be found around McMinnville with his wife Sam and their dog Zero.
Dave, affectionately know to Cellar Ridge as “The Red Hammer”, is our field crew leader. Dave makes sure our hammers swing swiftly, and our measurements always accurate. Although he was born in Zeeland, MI, The Red Hammer calls Yamhill County his home.
Dave has been busy in the construction industry for the past 15 years. Creating and crafting products that make our clients happy is Dave’s chief delight on the job. Dave’s superpower, if he were allowed just one, would be to read peoples’ minds and deliver exactly what they wanted, every time. Additionally, if Dave were to be any tool, he would most definitely be a mighty sledgehammer.
Along with his son, Augie (The Little Red Hammer), Dave makes sure to get out camping and cooking and revel in his favorite thing about this area: the friendly and diverse mix of people you meet every day while building green.
Another native of McMinnville, Conor is the other dedicated craftsman on the Cellar Ridge crew. Whether he is taking out cabinets to recycle and donate to Habitat for Humanity, cutting a delicate piece of trim, or framing a dual wall, Conor has the utmost attention to detail. Conor, when not building, likes to work in his yard and play with his kids. He is always working with his tools or expanding his knowledge to keep up with the newest building trends and products.
Given one superpower, Conor would love to be able to fly, rendering the arduous task of carrying things around the jobsite easy and quick. His favorite jobsite meal is whatever the local mini-mart is cooking up that day.
Conor fell in love with building and continues to hone his craft at every Cellar Ridge project. He makes an impact on each project and is an invaluable member of the team, contributing his great talents as a carpenter and so much more.
Our third and final native McMinnvillian, though he’s spent a great number of his days in Dayton, is Gabe. He’s a dangerously quick study and is a great support to our team.
Gabe is both mechanically and electronically savvy and can fix just about anything. He joined our team in 2014 when fellow colleague, “the red hammer”, saw he was available and Cellar Ridge pulled him in.
Gabe enjoys camping, hiking, BBQing with friends and almost always has his trusty K-9, Bandit, in tow.
Reid grew up in Eastern Oregon and loves to travel. He has lived in several different countries including Honduras and loves rafting, hiking fishing, camping, swimming, crabbing, backpacking and is a master barbecue operator!
Reid has been married to his wonderful wife for 23 years and has three daughters.
Bonnie is a native Oregonian and spent most of her childhood in Carlton. She joined the Cellar Ridge team in 2010 and has enjoyed being part of the family as we’ve continued to grow and succeed each year.
Bonnie and her husband live in Carlton, in her childhood home, with their 3 boys. They enjoy spending time at swim meets, track events and school functions with the boys.
Bonnie also enjoys volunteering in the community, co-owning a Learning Art studio where she makes jewelry, and traveling whenever she gets the chance!
Wendy comes to us from the wine industry where she spent the last ten years in logistics and direct to consumer sales. Her and her husband moved to the Willamette Valley from Boise, Idaho in 2010 with their dog, Zinfandel. Their family grew by one bubbling little boy in March 2016, so life just keeps getting more and more exciting for her!
Wendy’s favorite pass times are traveling, running, wine tasting, camping, and spending time with friends and family.
Nathaniel (Nat) has worked in the construction industry for almost ten years in the Oregon area. He lives in McMinnville with his wife and dog, but moved here from Minnesota after graduating from Carleton College.
His favorite pass times are playing with his dog, watching football, building, carpentry, and of course spending time with his lovely wife.
Nathan lives in McMinnville with his girlfriend and two dogs. He attended Clackamas Community College, but is a native of California. He was born and raised in California and moved to Oregon in 1998 to attend college. Nathan has worked in the construction industry since 2010 specializing in roofing, restoration, masonry, and finish carpentry.
Josh is a native Oregonian living in McMinnville with is wife who is expecting their first child very soon! He and his wife are both artists who enjoy traveling and anything outdoors.
Abhinav comes to Cellar Ridge Construction as a graduate of Portland State University’s Civil Engineering program and worked with the City of McMinnville in their City Engineering department as an intern. He graduated from high school in Gwalior India in 2010 specializing in Mathematics and Science, has an incredible passion for cooking, and loves to play instruments of any kind.