Our Company

“Building for People who care deeply about their home and land”

Shelter Associates Ltd. is a corporation founded in 1975, owned by Bruce Gordon and John Diven. Shelter’s office and woodworking shop are located in Free Union, Virginia, eight miles northwest of Charlottesville. Shelter has spent 30 remarkable years building a tradition of care and craftsmanship.

Bruce, a native of Charlottesville, attended the Pomfret School in Pomfret, Connecticut and Rollins College in Winter Park, Florida. After college, he returned to Charlottesville, and in 1971 formed the Bruce Gordon Construction Company for the purpose of designing and custom-building residential properties. In 1975 he and Christopher Halstead formed Shelter Associates Ltd. to expand a growing business. Chris has since left Shelter to establish other enterprises. Bruce manages the design department of Shelter in addition to his general administrative responsibilities.

John Diven, or J.D. as he is known, is the co-owner of Shelter Associates. He graduated from Sewickley Academy in Pittsburgh, where he grew up. He chose to stay in the Charlottesville area after graduation from the University of Virginia. J.D. manages the scheduling and supervision of work in the field for Shelter. His expertise in building techniques is unequaled.

From the early days, when Bruce began with small remodeling jobs, until today, Shelter has concentrated on residential design and construction. Along the way, Shelter has built or renovated many of the area’s most significant homes. The company has also completed major commercial projects ranging from restaurants and boutiques to the multi-million dollar construction of the Daily Progress Plant in Charlottesville.

Together Bruce and J.D. have guided Shelter from a small construction company whose assets were carried in the back of two pick-up trucks to a successful design-build firm whose name is synonymous with excellence, integrity and craftsmanship.