Our History

Sussex Development was formed in 1990, by Harry Davis, a Virginia Beach native and Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University graduate. He spent his early career working with one of the largest construction firms in the country, and a few other mid-to-large scale general contractors. Working with these companies, Harry often found himself at odds with the philosophies of how thosecompanies treated their clients, employees and subcontractors. In the late 1980s, one of these companies closed its doors and from that event Harry created a vision to develop a company that incorporated his core values of honesty, integrity, dedication and quality.

In the spring of 1990, Harry and a partner rented a two-room, 800 SF office space and Sussex Development was born. We started it off with a little bit of nothing, Harry says about those early days. We had a small number of employees and essentially no overhead. Harry and his partner chose to run a minimalistic company to help ensure it could be sustained long enough to grow. They had two other employees, and were savvy enough to focus their energies on one sector of the market and do it well.

They chose medical. Harry recognized that medical was one part of the market that didn’t stop moving like the speculative real estate sector did. We went after medical projects, from $5,000 to $10,000 jobs and on up. One of Sussex Development’s first projects was a restroom and main lobby renovation at Virginia Beach General Hospital. The success of this initial project, and capitalizing on years spent building key relationships, allowed the budding company the opportunity to build the much bigger Ambulatory Surgery Center at Virginia Beach General.

Through additional relationships that were fostered in the mid-1990s, Sussex Development was referred to Bob Aston, Founder of TowneBank, and to the YMCA of South Hampton Roads. Reflecting back, Harry says, we showed people then that even though we were small, we could do the work…we showed clients that we can do an excellent job, so they’ll want to have us back to do something else, big or small. These introductions paved the road for Sussex Development to expand its market presence and set the stage for growth.

Sussex Development has maintained the same focus on detail, quality and integrity throughout its years in business. Those core values allowed Sussex Development to cultivate strong footholds throughout the Mid-Atlantic region in key markets such as: Healthcare, Recreational Facilities, Banking, Education, Retail Shoppes and Industrial Buildings.

Today Sussex Development is still a privately held corporation, with hundreds of years combined construction experience, spread among a close-knit Team of professionals. Our original two employees are still part of the Sussex Development Team, and three-quarters of our staff have been employees for more than ten years.

We foster strong relationships with our Clients, which in turn equate to over 90% of our business coming from repeat Clients and referrals. Clients trust that Sussex Development has their best interests at the forefront and will be by their side from initial design concepts to final occupancy. Commitment, experience and expertise have allowed Sussex Development to establish business relationships that have spanned a lifetime and will follow to the next generation.

Healthcare| Recreational
Banking | Educational | Retail | Industrial
Healthcare • Recreations
 Banking • Educational • Retail • Industrial




Virginia (VA)


North Carolina (NC)



ASHE Membership & Certification

Sussex Development is dedicated to continuing our education and finding ways to better serve our clients. As part of these efforts in the spring of 2008, Sussex became a member of ASHE, American Society for Healthcare Engineering. ASHE’s mission is “Dedicated to optimizing the healthcare physical environment.”

CCIFP Certifications

LEEANN OLD of Sussex Development Appointed to Controller and Achieves “Certified Construction Industry Financial Professional” Designation