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Anthony White: Navigating the Past and Future in IPS Rebuilding Stronger Initiative

Anthony White (right), a 2006 graduate of Arsenal Tech, works with students at Lew Wallace School 107.
Anthony White (right), a 2006 graduate of Arsenal Tech, works with students at Lew Wallace School 107.

As the project manager for Pepper Construction of Indiana, Anthony White’s journey in the transformational $410 million Rebuilding Stronger project is personal.

For White, who attended Indianapolis Public Schools (IPS) from kindergarten through high school, the connection goes beyond construction blueprints. Having overcome personal challenges to graduate from Arsenal Technical High School in 2006 and earn a bachelor’s degree in construction management from Ball State in 2010, he walks through IPS classrooms with a unique perspective.

“I was a kid who grew up in a single-parent household with limited opportunities but was able to persevere to have a terrific career and life,” White said. “When I finished college and returned to Indianapolis, I chose to return to IPS and make sure students got to see where hard work and determination will take you.”

IPS, fueled by the 2023 Capital Referendum, reflects a commitment to elevate educational facilities over the next eight years. Pepper Construction is one of the project’s Construction Management contractor (CMc), overseeing a variety of projects from roof replacements to IT upgrades across the district.

As a project manager, White’s role is complex and will consume thousands of hours over the next few years. He manages project funds, oversees scheduling, ensures quality and safety standards, and navigates risks.

Yet, White remains grounded, emphasizing the underlying belief at Pepper Construction that students can prosper academically in safe, warm, and welcoming educational environments.

Returning to Arsenal Tech and Ernie Pyle School 90, White finds inspiration in bridging the past and present.

“I think at one time there was a negative stigma about attending IPS, but being successful and doing what I am today is a good example to current students about what it means to attend IPS,” he said. “I explain to the students that I was in those chairs, and this is what I did to get where I am today. I want to inspire the youth to achieve a great career, and life from the skills and opportunities you receive from being in the IPS system.”