Sean Gouvin

Director of Facilities Planning & Engineering, Baystate Health, age 38

Sean-Gouvin-01Sean Gouvin remembers feeling really good, physically and otherwise, when he crossed the finish line at last April’s Boston Marathon.

“I was running strong in miles 18 to 26, which generally doesn’t happen,” said Gouvin, who has run the event 15 times, usually with Griffin’s Friends in support of Baystate Children’s Hospital. “And it was an incredibly beautiful day.”

But then, as he and his three children were sitting on a curb enjoying the sun, the crowd, the energy, and the moment, two explosions that they could hear but not see turned that beautiful day on its ear.

“It was like watching time stand still,” he recalled, noting that, after the blasts, there was silence for several seconds, then things went back to normal. “It was maybe 15 or 20 minutes before everyone fully realized what happened, and then the shock and the horror started setting in on people.”

Like many, Gouvin said, he was thankful he didn’t cross the finish line moments later, but also more thankful, and appreciative, of everything he has in his life. That includes his family, his soccer coaching, his work within the community, and a broad and quite rewarding job with Baystate Health.

It takes a lot of words to describe what he does as director of Facilities Planning & Engineering, so perhaps it’s all best summed up with a number: 4 million. That’s the number of square feet in all the facilities within the vast Baystate Health real-estate portfolio.

And it’s Gouvin’s responsibility to lead the team that essentially manages it all, handling planning, design, construction, and maintenance for buildings that range from the nearly century-old Springfield Building on the grounds of Baystate Medical Center to the recently opened Hospital of the Future just a few feet away.

It’s a huge job, one that ensures that there’s no such thing as a typical day, which is perhaps what he likes most about it.

“It’s different each day, so every day you have to be on,” he explained. “And with each day comes a new challenge. Thankfully, I’ve got a really great team. You’ve got to have a group of people that fit together extremely well to be effective in this environment, and we have that.”

— George O’Brien

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