Ambassador Search Group

Owner, 2017 - Present


Construction & Architecture Search Director, West Coast, 2014 - 2017

Marlondo Leather

Partner, 2015 - Present

Conquest Leather *Acquired

Owner, 2014 - 2015 *Acquired

Owner, 2012 - 2016

Icon Medical Network

Recruiter, 2013 - 2014

Freelance Marketing Consultant

Owner, 2010 - 2013

Ironman Finisher, 2011

“We are working with TJ Kastning in four marketplaces across the US. Our business strategy requires that we attract and retain the absolute best talent in our industry niche and we are thrilled with the people TJ recruits to fill all of our various positions. HE IS THE BEST!!"

  • Jim Dow, Owner & Founder of Schuchart Dow

“TJ is the best recruiter I’ve known. He listens, asks probing questions, and understands that character matters more than skill sets. He’s brought people to us who love to learn and grow, who are driven to excel, who fit into our collaborative teams, and who care deeply about living and working with integrity. Many recruiters search resumes for keywords; TJ goes deeper, gets to know people, and finds matching values and ambitions. His communication is careful and clear, and he follows up on each step. I expect we’ll work together for a long time.”

  • Norman Meites, Partner & Chief Estimator, Cello & Maudru

“TJ helped me recruit some senior personnel for my business. He was very organized and a pleasure to work with. The quality of the personnel that we hired for our business was exactly what we were looking for. TJ listened to our needs and executed on his promise to find us the right people for our business. I highly recommend TJ if you are looking to recruit excellent people for your company.”

  • Andrew McHale, Owner, Design Line Construction 

“TJ has been very helpful in finding well qualified candidates for us in a very tight job market.”

  • Pete Moffat, Owner, Pete Moffat Construction

“Our small family company has never worked with a professional Recruiter so working with TJ was our first experience. I can highly recommend TJ for his outstanding attention to detail and his recruiting philosophy, fit with our company, updates on the process and progress, offer/negotiation effectiveness, endurance (our region made for a longer term working relationship). I give TJ high marks and look forward to working with him again.”

  • Jo Anne Estes, Owner, Estes Builders

“Tj Kastning is amazing at not only finding candidates but also finding the right personality fit for our growing firm. He is very strategic in his recommendations. There isn't a better recruiter that I have come across in my entire career. I would highly recommend him and to add we use him exclusively.”

  • David Hughes, Owner, Hughes & Co.

“TJ Kastning, a great resource for finding key talent. No hassle, straight talker, and very talented.”

  • Fred Parker, TI Pre Construction, Balfour Beatty

“I have been working with TJ on our recruiting needs for the last two years. He has done a great job of providing us with qualified candidates. He makes sure to understand our needs and is very considerate of my time which is important to me. TJ is an excellent resource for our company.”

  • Steve Mazza, VP Field Operations, GSE Construction

“TJ is a leader in his field who acts with a high level of professionalism, integrity and attention to detail. TJ has been a pleasure to work with and we will continue to grow our talented team through our partnership.”

  • Jason Martin, Area Manager, Boldt Construction

"I have enjoyed working with TJ Kastning very much.  He listened carefully to what I wanted and found the perfect opportunity for me. Changing companies is something I have done very seldom in my career, and the guidance and advice he provided was very helpful. I would give TJ Kastning my highest recommendation"

  • Kevin Smith, General Superintendent, Boldt Construction

“I strongly recommend TJ for anyone looking to find a new position. At every stage of the process he was completely professional, maintaining complete discretion. He arranged introductory meetings and several callback interviews, and followed up promptly with a phone call after every one of them to see how the process was working for me. He even handled the compensation negotiation. The result of all this? I have the best job of my life with an amazing company at a higher salary with better benefits.

TJ is a pro in every sense of the word.”

  • Jon Boe, Senior Estimator, Cello & Maudru

"I want to extend my thanks to TJ Kastning who recently arranged my recent career change. When I was first contacted I was not looking to make a career change but felt that my current position could use some improvement.  Their understanding of the construction industry made conversation easy, which resulted in asking me if I might be interested in looking at some possible career prospects. TJ presented me with several options, were narrowed down to one which, it turned out, had a good chemistry match and goals aligned with my own. This process could have languished due to me being on an out of town project, and issues with the principles at the new firm, but TJ persevered and kept the connection moving.  

I am looking forward to starting with a company that cares, on a project that matched my requirements and abilities. Unlike many recruiters that are pests, if TJ Kastning is very professional and results orientated."  

  • George Ellison, Superintendent, GSE Construction

“TJ was a fantastic resource when I was looking for a new position after nearly a decade with my previous employer. After being out of the job hunting world for almost ten years, he was an incredibly helpful resource to discuss what to include on my resume, how to help make myself stand out from the competition, as well as thoughtful direction on which firms would be best aligned with my longterm goals. I'm extremely excited about my new position and will be gladly referring TJ to anyone with construction recruiting needs.” 

  • Hugh Field, Project Executive, Design Line Construction 

“TJ is a great resource for any HR head looking for truly talented, franchise quality people. In my dealings with TJ I have found him to be very informed in the Bay Area market and he offers his expertise to others. If you are in the market, my suggestion is to start with TJ.”

  • Doug Spooner, Project Manager, Black Mountain Construction 

“TJ, Thank you very much for the hard work you have done with me in finding a position within the industry. There is something to be said for a having a good reputation and great relationships with a vast number of contacts in the area within the industry.I truly appreciate all of the connections you created for me. In addition to the connections you create, your professionalism is exceptional. I recognize the fact that the way you comport yourself in the manner that you do has given you the connections and reputation that you have.Thanks for everything.”

  • Leslie Briggs, General Manager, AMPAM Parks Mechanical

“I contacted TJ looking to explore new options. What I received was an open minded caring individual willing to share his professional insight and knowledge with me. I learned how important career moves are, and how selfish we can be as individuals in our job searches. He helped guide my focus towards where I want to be in life, and drew attention to what kind of company would find me valuable. He even revamped my resume!!! Thanks TJ!! I highly recommend TJ for whatever your professional career needs may be. Sound advice from a great man.”

  • Ben Kovach, Superintendent, 84 Lumber

"TJ Kastning truly goes above and beyond to present his clients favorably to leading firms in the construction industry. He recognizes talent and is very professional and knowledgeable about the unique hiring process in our industry." 

  • Milton Rodas, Safety Manager, NBC Construction

“TJ contacted me after viewing my profile. I was unsure at first but it quickly became apparent that he was well versed at the construction industry and had two job offers within weeks of our first contact. Very professional. 

  • Matt Taylor, Project Manager, Design Line Construction

“I can’t say enough good things about TJ Kastning’s abilities as a search consultant. We’ve all read the perfectly succinct quotes about what differentiates a job from a meaningful, satisfying vocation. We’ve seen the Venn diagrams about finding the intersection between skill, enjoyment, and need, in order to find the “perfect” career match. That simplicity looks great on the page, but the complexity of reality is best managed by an objective professional.

I had the pleasure of working with TJ over a period of several months prior to moving to my current position with Cello & Maudru Construction. TJ has a truly exceptional talent to accurately assess the abilities, passion, and values of both companies and potential recruits to create win-win partnerships that can last. He invests the time necessary to get to know the needs of his clients, listening effectively and asking clear, concise questions until all parties reach an understanding. Once he had an accurate assessment of my character, he was able to leverage his extensive network of contacts to connect me with a company whose culture and values perfectly match my own. He clearly outlined the process early on, managed it expertly from beginning to end, and was an absolute joy to work with in all of our interactions.

If you’re thinking about hiring or you’re thinking about looking for new opportunities, you don’t need a Venn diagram: you need a professional.You need TJ. Don't hesitate to call him to discuss your needs.”

  • Catherine Osborne, Project Manager, Cello & Maudru

“TJ was fantastic to work with. As a recruiter he was friendly, not pushy, and seemed to care about both me and the company he was hiring. He was quick to understand what I was looking for and that the position would be perfect for me. He was there to help me through the entire process and even followed up with me after being hired to make sure it was indeed a good fit for me, undoubtedly he has found me the perfect job. I would recommend TJ to anyone and everyone that is in need of a job.”

  • Austin Voges, Estimator, Air Systems

"T.J. was very instrumental with presenting me to GSE Construction. He introduced me in a comprehensive and professional manner. Negotiations were complicated, but T.J. completed them with high end skill level. I recommend T.J. and his team for any construction professional."  

  • Ken Almberg, Superintendent, GSE Construction

“I contacted TJ on a Friday, by the following Monday he had an interview scheduled for me with an excellent company and by Wednesday we had an employment agreement signed for a position that starts Friday. Wow! What more can be said? Great job TJ and thanks! “

  • Doug Arthur, Superintendent, Dijeau Poage

“I had the pleasure of working with TJ at a time of professional transition. TJ was immediately dedicated to helping me. His advice, guidance and insights were instrumental in my search. I hold him with the highest regard and would not hesitate to recommend him to anyone.”

  • Michael Scranton, Construction Manager, PMC Construction

“TJ is very well respected in the recruiting and construction industry. He takes pride in matching his clients with skilled candidates. Do not hesitate to reach out to TJ for hiring or finding a great new opportunity.”

  • Colin O’Connell, Project Manager, Principal Builders

“TJ understands the needs and skill set of the design and construction industry, especially in the San Francisco Bay Area. He has a unique ability to connect the dots for general contractors, construction managers, and construction software companies. He gets the value proposition for these organizations and how to place talent and resources in key roles to scale in an effective way.”

  • Tom Feliz, Business Development, Pavia Systems 

“TJ will expand your horizons. He took me from not looking, to looking at an incredible opportunity within a few conversations. During these conversations he dedicated equal amounts of time to evaluating my achievements and understanding my aspirations. He proved to be highly accessible, an effective communicator, and a great creator of momentum. If he contacts you, do yourself a favor and let him go to work on your behalf.”

  • Billy Lee, Business Development, Cello & Maudru 

“I just had to take a moment, to recognize the awareness that TJ demonstrated over the past two to three months, in keeping his ears and eyes open for possible projects, and companies that would be the perfect fit, for me and my family situation. I was off work, enjoying my spring and summer, while TJ was presenting me a couple of options, every month or so. He finally came across the right job for me, and for the company I went to work for. We are definitely helping each other out, on this project, and hopefully many more in the future. Much thanks for the dedication of TJ Kastning”

  • Gary Killingsworth, Superintendent, GSE Construction

“I highly recommend TJ as a recruiter. After a good deal of thought, I recognized that my position was not taking me in the direction I desired so I connected with TJ through LinkedIn. Once we were on the phone, I explained my goals along with some potential companies I was interested in. TJ asked hard but necessary questions in order to really understand what would make me happy. He maintained a core concept of finding me a position that offered long term success. Within 1 week I had an interview scheduled with a highly employee focused general contractor. 2 weeks later I had an amazing offer. I never could have seen things coming together so quickly and I have no doubt this was thanks to TJ's consistent personal effort.”

  • Sean Puterbaugh, Assistant Project Manager, Principal Builders

“TJ is the best recruiter I have ever worked with. His attention to detail helped me finding the company that is just right for me. He walked me through every step of the way and effectively negotiated the offer for me.

During the process he repetitively gauged my level of interest in continuing the process  not just pushing for his own agenda. His recruiting philosophy entails finding the best candidate for the employer and the best fitting company for the prospect, and the result speaks for itself.

I am very thankful for his service and I would highly recommend him to anyone in need of his service!”

  • Timothy Lin, Senior Architect, Estes Builders

 “TJ was very helpful and professional through the whole hiring process. He provided great insight and advice before and after each interview. I would recommend TJ to anyone who is looking for new career opportunities.”

  • JJ Macarandan, Project Engineer, GSE Construction

“I recently had the opportunity to work with TJ Kastning with my job placement with a major nationwide general contractor that had a opening come up suddenly in my area. After discussing what I was looking for and reviewing skill set etc he quickly interacted on his end with his client and quickly arranged an interview with the executive team. After my interview he constantly kept me up to date on the process and what was going on behind the scenes via phone calls and emails and TJ was always available to talk even late in the evenings if needed. When it came down to offer time TJ worked diligently behind the scenes to successfully negotiate what was not a standard compensation package with the client. TJ through his diligence and concise communication made the process easy and quick I think start to finish it took about two weeks. I would recommend TJ to others that are looking for a recruiter.“

  • Jason Bardellini, Superintendent, Clark Construction

“You can trust that TJ's looking out for everyone's best interests in any deal; he's a lucky, trustworthy, find for those who don't have much recruiting experience.”

  • Matt Spade, Project Manager, Dome Construction

 “TJ was integral in helping me secure my current position and worked diligently for me from the interview prep to following up with the organization and myself. He is extremely professional and knows his trade. I would recommend TJ to anyone.”

  • Thomas Aldrich, Project Manager, DPR Construction

“I am pleased to recommend TJ as a construction recruiting specialist. I worked with TJ in my search for a new position and found him to be both knowledgeable and insightful. He asks great questions and listens carefully to the answers. TJ is creative in his approach, looking beyond the obvious to find solutions that work for both employer and employee."

  • Lisa Ledet, Project Engineer, Cello & Maudru Construction 

“The ability to listen, ask the right questions, to establish reachable goals, to be realistic and to find an "excellent fit" between an employer and employment prospect is an art. TJ Kastning, in his gentle manner has reached this balance for me and I highly recommend him to both employers and employment candidates. It has been a joy to work with him.” 

  • Kazumi Komar, Lead Estimator, Balfour Beatty Construction

“Startups need to build a skilled sales team, and that can be really challenging for founders like myself hiring their first sales reps. TJ came into my company with his recruiting experience and brought a lot of value. He took one of our new hires with no sales experience and got him dialed in with a confident attitude, real world scripts, an efficient workflow, and grueling cold call practice, in a matter of hours. I saw immediate results in increased enthusiasm, confidence, call volume, and performance. Sales is really tough, so TJ was back a few weeks later to encourage and finetune our sales process when our team needed it most. I'd recommend TJ to anyone looking to build a sales team from the ground up.” 

  • Chris Walker, CEO, Element Robot

“TJ is an excellent recruiter. He is persistent and great at conveying ideas and speaking on behalf of the company he is recruiting for. I have never come in contact with a better recruiter than TJ. At the end of the day TJ will do everything in his power to pair the right person with the appropriate company based on the beneficial outcome of the employee and the employer. He invests himself in making the best move for all parties.”

  • Michael Storer, Project Manager, Shimmick Construction

“TJ is great to work with and the most pro-active recruiter I've had in my corner over the years. He's the only recruiter in my experience that had several leads on potential employers where the others focused only on single opportunities. Thanks TJ!”

  • Jeff Ingraca, Superintendent, Nelcor

“I continue to be impressed with TJ's work ethic and commitment to his clients' success. I also appreciate his transparency and willingness to go the extra mile to gather information about projects, positions, and companies, so candidates can make better career decisions and be fully prepared for interviews.”

  • Yoram Mehr, Project Engineer

“Thank you very much for the hard work you have done with me in finding a position within the industry. There is something to be said for a having a good reputation and great relationships with a vast number of contacts in the area within the industry.I truly appreciate all of the connections you created for me.  

In addition to the connections you create, your professionalism is exceptional. I recognize the fact that the way you comport yourself in the manner that you do has given you the connections and reputation that you have.“

  • Leslie Briggs, General Manager, AMPAM Parks Mechanical

“TJ's attention to detail and making sure I was comfortable throughout the entire 'recruitment' process is unprecedented in my dealings with the many recruiters that are out there. TJ is very thorough and professional. Most recruiters simply find your resume and send blindly send you into an interview. This is not the case with TJ! He took the time to get to know me and understand my career goals. Not only did he brief me on each company before interviewing, he also followed up to "debrief" and discuss likes/dislikes after each interview. Every conversation ended with a plan for the next step. I highly recommend TJ.”

  • Amy Guffey, Project Engineer, Design Line Construction

“I was extremely impressed with the experience working with TJ and his team.  His level of effort in supporting my career needs and knowledge of the industry was astounding.  I am very happy with the level of service and eventually leading to a great offer. Thank you so much.”

  • Mike Emmons, Senior Project Manager, Air Systems