Mike Riddle Construction partnered with Tracy Isham, South Salem High School counselor, and Corbin Blater, a South Salem and CTEC Residential Construction class of 2022 student, to build “Zen Dens”. The Zen Dens project came about when South Salem High School was provided a classroom space for a calm room and their counseling team began working to furnish the space.

What are Zen Dens?

The Zen Dens are large, moveable cubbies with a cushioned bench, vibrant nature scenes, and dimmable lighting where students can sit or lay to relax and de-stress. When Mike heard about the idea for Zen Dens, he was immediately interested and asked to join the team.

From the first initial conversations with Mike about our project idea, he was all in. At the first meeting Mike said, “I could give you some money to help your project, but what I’d really like to do is join your team and help make this happen.” Mike volunteered his personal time to come to the school to work with Tracy and Corbin every week from January to June. When more materials were needed, a lumber shipment would arrive at the school. When it was time for the electrical to be installed, an electrician would show up to do the work. And on and on, just like that.

Making a positive impact around the district

“Mike Riddle has been an incredible partner. He literally makes it possible for CTEC students to design and build a home every year. Mike is a busy and brilliant industry leader, but he always makes the time to provide meaningful opportunities for students. Through his willingness to overcome obstacles and make things happen, Mike Riddle has had a tremendous impact shaping the lives and careers of hundreds of CTEC students and alumni,” said CTEC Principal Rhonda Rhodes.

Mike has shown extreme generosity, not only monetarily, but with his time and the mentorship and partnership he brought to South Salem.

Thank you so much to the entire Mike Riddle Construction team. Corbin, Tracy and the students this benefits will be forever grateful to have had the opportunity to partner with Mike.