Jacek Tomasik Embraces His Work As Wellington’s Building Official

Jacek Tomasik Embraces His Work As Wellington’s Building Official

Wellington has seen an amazing amount of growth over the past two decades, and Building Official Jacek “Jack” Tomasik has been there making sure everything is done safely and according to the village’s strict codes and regulations.

There are members of the Wellington team who have been here for the long haul, and with 19 years of tenure with the village, Tomasik is one of them.

“The building official is a position basically in charge of the Building Department,” he said. “I am the happy person to be just that.”

Tomasik and his family built a life in Palm Beach County from the ground up after moving here from Krakow, Poland, in 1989. He arrived with his wife, daughter, and no knowledge of the local language, but he was always a hard worker.

“I wanted to learn more to develop more,” he explained. “When I originally came here, I couldn’t speak one word of English. As my language got better, I decided that I wanted to stay with construction, but I wanted to learn more.”

This personal drive to learn and grow has carried Tomasik throughout his career. If one takes the time to count, there are 22 different certifications decorating the walls in his office, all of which are dedicated to his knowledge of the often technical building industry. He is particularly proud of his most recent certification as a fire inspector.

“You can’t really get too comfortable,” Tomasik said. “This is an ever-changing job with new building codes coming up. You need continuing education to stay on top of everything that happens in construction. You have to be current and keep developing.”

Tomasik started with Wellington as a building inspector, but prior to joining the team, he had been encouraged and given an opportunity by Paul Schofield, now Wellington’s village manager, when Schofield was in charge of planning, zoning and building in Royal Palm Beach.

“Paul hired me, and I was there a short time as a building inspector, and then I had an opportunity to come to Wellington. I was really not so thrilled to go and tell him,” Tomasik recalled.

Yet Schofield encouraged him yet again, telling it would be crazy not to take the position and have a chance to grow. “Paul Schofield influenced me quite a bit as a manager,” Tomasik said.

After coming on board with Wellington, Tomasik worked his way up in the department by always looking for new ways to improve his skillset. The path took him through senior inspector, chief inspector and then to building official in 2006. While he has seen many changes over the years, Tomasik is most proud of the department’s ability to work smarter.

“We were able to streamline and automate tons of things here,” he said. “I think the biggest achievement for Wellington, which was a whole group of people here working, was converting the whole permitting process to digital and electronic permitting. I was really proud of it because Wellington was probably, in this area, one of the very first to do that.”

Through all the changes, Tomasik and his family have kept a connection to their Polish roots. Both of his daughters, even though the youngest was born here in Florida, speak his native language and are able to converse easily with his parents, who now also live in the area.

“We go back and visit [Poland] every couple of years. We want to make sure our kids understand where we come from and get to see a little bit of Europe and the old country, the traditions, food and pretty much everything there is of the culture,” Tomasik said.

Time with his wife of 30 years and daughters remains very important. The Tomasiks occasionally go boating, snorkeling or skiing together. Yet Tomasik started as a carpenter and still enjoys working with his hands.

“In my spare time, I work in my garage and do some woodwork. It is still something that gives me a little decompression from the office and day-to-day matters,” Tomasik said. “I build cabinets, shelves and crown moldings as a hobby.”

For Tomasik, his work is both fulfilling and important to the community. He finds the value of everyone in his department and knows they make a difference in everyday lives.

“Building inspectors are silent defenders. They are people who actually prevent things from happening. If nothing happens, then we did our job. The building didn’t catch on fire, the roof didn’t collapse, the air quality wasn’t bad, a hurricane came through and it’s fine,” Tomasik said. “It’s one of the things that I strive and love about this job. We are actually making a difference to the point that when someone moves into a house or starts occupying a new building, it is safe.”

Tomasik still gets out of the office and enjoys visiting building sites himself. He also enjoys interviewing, hiring and training new staff.

“Wellington is a great place to work. We have people who have been here a long time, and that tells you Wellington treats employees well and gives you the opportunity to grow,” he said. “People who grow and are happy; they do a better job.”

Tomasik, himself, would be a prime example of just that.