Joseph Gough, Influential Contractor, Dies

In over five decades of service to Michigan, Gough was the general contractor on many Detroit landmarks. Among these are First Independence Bank and the Farmer Jacks Plaza on Livernois and Seven Mile Rd.; the Charles H. Wright Museum of African American, at its original location; the Mel Farr dealership on Ten Mile Rd.; Loving School, on Oakland; Sunnybrook Nursery; The House of Prayer and Praise; West Side Unity; Crockett Vocational Center; AKA Headquarters and many others.

Gough’s community involvement was extensive. He was instrumental in organizing the Minority Contractors Association (MCA) and served as president for several terms. He spearheaded the drive to form alliances with the Association of General Contractors (AGC), a national organization, to joint venture with MCA so that minority contractors could obtain the necessary bonding capacity to bid on large construction projects.

Gough was named Contractor of the Year by the AGC. He also worked with the Rev. Jesse Jackson to organize the Michigan Chapter of Operation PUSH. Other civic involvement included the Cotillion Club, Booker T. Washington Business Association, Michigan Minority Business Development and the NAACP.

He is survived by his wife, Dora; sons, Emory, Carleton and Darryl; three grandchildren, five great-grandchildren, and a host of other relatives

Final arrangements were handled by Swanson’s Funeral Home.

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