Dan Laird has joined Michael Baker International’s Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, office, as Director of Client Relations responsible for business development in Western Pennsylvania and the surrounding region.
Dan will play a key role in driving the growth of the seven Pittsburgh Practice areas: Architecture, Bridges, Civil & Environmental Engineering, Construction Services, Land Development & Infrastructure, Planning, and Transportation. In addition to continuing to foster relationships with Michael Baker’s current valued clients and implementing strategies to accelerate business growth across the Region, Dan will also serve as a liaison with the many firms that Michael Baker does business with in the service of our clients.
Dan has honed his business development skills by working with A/E/C clients and legislative leaders throughout Western Pennsylvania over the past 20 years.
On his new role at Michael Baker, he said: “I believe collaboration, a strategic path forward, and clear communication are key to corporate goals, organizing growth and the alignment of community and industry partnerships. I’m excited to help enhance Michael Baker International’s presence and value in Western Pennsylvania.”
Most recently Dan served as the Director of Business Development for Hill International, overseeing business growth and opportunities in the Western Pennsylvania market.
Dan holds a Bachelor of Civil Engineering Technology degree from Point Park University. He serves in leadership roles on multiple engineering organizations, including the American Society of Highway Engineers (ASHE Pittsburgh), Southwestern Pennsylvania Engineering Outreach, Construction Management Association of America and March of Dimes Transportation, Building & Construction.
Pittsburgh-based, geotechnical specialty contractor, Nicholson Construction, returns to Ohio’s Portage Lakes for the Ohio Department of Natural Resources North Reservoir Dam Project.
The 100-year-old North Reservoir dam will undergo a $22.9M repair project to bring it into compliance with Ohio Dam Safety’s standards. The last remediation project on North Reservoir Dam was performed in 1982. The current remediation project includes seepage cutoff, overtopping protection and replacement of the existing spillway and lake drain.
Nicholson was contracted by Beaver Excavating Company to construct a soil-mix gravity section and cutoff wall for the new dam in order to mitigate excessive seepage and to increase its factor of safety.
This is the second Portage Lakes project for Nicholson. In 2017, the company was contracted to construct a soil mix gravity section and cutoff wall for the new East Reservoir Dam.
“It’s a high compliment to be brought back on-site to build subsequent work,” said Ryan Streets, vice president, major projects. “Several core members of the East Reservoir team are back for this project, which is a huge advantage in terms of lessons learned and efficiencies we can gain.”
Nicholson’s work on the North Reservoir Dam will start in the late Spring 2021 and continue into next year. “Earning our clients’ trust and returning to their jobsites to do additional work is truly a testament to our crew’s ability to safely construct a high-quality product,” said Dario Gnoato, senior vice president, major projects, Nicholson Construction. “We’re looking forward to another great project in Portage Lakes.”
About Nicholson Construction Company:
Nicholson is a versatile geotechnical contractor specializing in deep foundations, earth retention and ground treatment. As the North American subsidiary of Soletanche Bachy, one of the world’s leading geotechnical contractors, we are part of a global network of geotechnical resources and expertise. We work in a wide range of industries and environments, from power plants and dams, to bridges and skyscrapers. Headquartered in Pittsburgh, Nicholson has offices around the country to address each region’s unique geotechnical construction needs.
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Point Park University’s new Bachelor of Science programs in Electrical Engineering and Mechanical Engineering have been accredited by the Engineering Accreditation Commission of ABET, the global accreditor of college and university programs in applied and natural science, computing, engineering, and engineering technology. Point Park’s Civil Engineering Technology program also received a renewal on its accreditation by ABET’s Engineering Technology Accreditation Commission.
ABET accreditation assures that programs meet standards to produce graduates ready to enter critical technical fields that are leading the way in innovation and emerging technologies, and anticipating the welfare and safety needs of the public.
“Achieving ABET accreditation for our new electrical and mechanical engineering programs is a great milestone for us and, most importantly, for our students. We have long maintained that our programs provide a rigorous, hands-on engineering education, and this is a welcome validation,” said Gregg Johnson, Chair of Point Park’s Department of Natural Sciences, Engineering and Technology. “Our students, alumni and their employers now have assurance that an engineering degree from Point Park University comes from a program that has been closely scrutinized and found to meet the high standards ABET requires in all aspects, including curriculum, faculty, facilities and university support.”
While Point Park has offered accredited degrees in electrical and mechanical engineering technology for more than three decades, the NSET department began the process of developing the Electrical Engineering and Mechanical Engineering programs about four years ago. The move was an effort to stay in step with the needs of our students and their regional employers.
Sought worldwide, ABET’s voluntary peer-review process is highly respected because it adds critical value to academic programs in the technical disciplines, where quality, precision, and safety are of the utmost importance.
Developed by technical professionals from ABET’s member societies, ABET criteria focus on what students experience and learn. ABET accreditation reviews look at program curricula, faculty, facilities, and institutional support and are conducted by teams of highly skilled professionals from industry, academia, and government, with expertise in the ABET disciplines.
ABET is a nonprofit, non-governmental organization with ISO 9001:2015 certification. It currently accredits 4,144 programs at 812 colleges and universities in 32 countries.
More information about ABET, its member societies, and the accreditation criteria used to evaluate programs can be found at www.abet.org.
Click here for more information about Point Park’s Engineering programs.
Contact: Lou Corsaro
Point Park University
Oh what a night! Nearly 400 guests participated in the ESWP 136th Annual Engineering Awards Banquet, held in the Allegheny Ballroom of the Westin Hotel on Thursday, February 6. Master of Ceremonies Rick Sebak presided over the event, providing a few tantalizing trivia questions to the crowd, in the style he is so famous for. Along the way, awards were presented to Trevor Divine and Simone Stein, recipients of the George Washington Prize, presented by the University of Pittsburgh’s Dean of Engineering James Martin, and Carnegie Mellon University’s Dean of Engineering Bill Sanders respectfully. Following, ESWP President Dave Borneman presented Mr. Bill White with ESWP’s inaugural Educator of the Year Award for his in-class and extracurricular activities at the Avonworth School District, promoting STEM education. Following, Mr. Borneman recognized Dr. Brandon Grainger with the Engineer of the Year Award for his work in electrical power industry and leading the EPIC Conference in 2019. The Projects of the Year Awards were next up, recognizing the following:
- In the Transportation Category, we recognize the Bentleyville Interchange, and the Owner, Pennsylvania Department of Transportation; the Engineer, ms consultants; the General Contractor, Golden Triangle Contracting; Survey Services, Monolah Basin Engineers; and Geotechnical Engineer, AWK Consulting Engineers
- In the Rehabilitation Category, we recognize the Liberty Tunnel Rehabilitation, and the Owner, Pennsylvania Department of Transportation, District 11-0; the Engineer, WSP USA, Inc.; CM/CI Services, Hill International; and the three Contractors on this project: Wellington Power Corporation, Swank Construction Company, and Mosites Construction Company
- In the Innovation Category, we recognize the Pennsylvania Turnpike Roadway and Bridge Reconstruction from Milepost 39.62, and the Owner, the PA Turnpike Commission; the Engineer, McCormick Taylor; the Construction Manager, Hill International; and the General Contractor Trumbull
- In the Education Category, we recognize the Point Park University Playhouse, and the Owner Point Park University; the Engineer/Architect, Westlake Reed Leskosky; and the General Contractor, PJ Dick.
- In the Emergency Rehabilitation Project of the Year, we recognize the Station Square Norfolk Southern Derailment, and the Owner, Port Authority of Allegheny County; the Engineer, GAI Consultants; the Construction Manager, SAI Consulting Engineers Inc.; and the General Contractor, Michael Facchiano Contracting, Inc.
The evening was highlighted by the presentation of the William Metcalf Award to Thomas G. Leech, P.E., S.E. Tom’s long career as a bridge engineer, along with his publishing and family interests were presented in video showing much of Tom’s work in all three areas. Special remarks were included by colleagues Tom Costello, Steve Shanley, Eric Veydt, and David Dzombak. Congratulations to Tom, and all of the award recipients, and thanks to all those who attended the Banquet!
ESWP’s Annual Engineering Career Fair was held on Friday, January 31, 2020 at the Engineers’ Society of Western Pennsylvania.
28 companies participated in greeting over 100 students from the tri-state area, providing a rare opportunity for students and professionals to meet employers and company representatives. Students also took advantage of the mock interviews, an opportunity for students and professionals to interact and get quick feedback on their resume and interview skills.
Thank you to all the companies and students who participated.
Seth Pearlman, P.E., D. GE, M.ASCE, the President and CEO of Menard Group USA,
- will be receiving ASCE’s 2020 Wallace Hayward Baker Award for Ingenious Innovation in the field of ground modification.
- The prestigious Wallace Hayward Baker award is given by the Geo-Institute in recognition of creative and innovative contributions in the field of ground modification.
- Pearlman, who earned a BS and an MS in Civil Engineering from Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, has more than 40 years of engineering experience and has worked on some of the most challenging ground improvement projects in the US.
Commenting on the award announcement Pearlman stated, “This is a great honor, and it is humbling to know that my contributions have been appreciated.”
Fay an i+iconUSA Company, a heavy-civil and industrial construction company, was recognized as a top subcontractor by Bechtel at the company’s annual Supply Chain Awards for exceptional work on projects for Bechtel’s Oil, Gas, and Chemical global business unit.
Companies were evaluated on multiple factors including: overall performance, ability to deliver quality services/supplies on time, ability to work collaboratively to meet milestones, and meeting or exceeding project expectations in aspects of safety, performance, technical expertise, and environmental compliance. Nominations were reviewed and approved by Bechtel procurement and project managers with final approval from senior leadership.
“It has been an honor to be one of several contractors working to transform a former industrial site into the $6 billion Pennsylvania chemicals plant,” stated Lester C. Snyder, III, President and CEO of i+iconUSA. “We are grateful to be recognized on a global level for the work of all of our employees on site.”
Fay has been performing marine and heavy civil construction for Bechtel for four years at the new Shell cracker plant in Monaca, PA. Fay has been involved in both the Early Works and the Site Work and Earth Works Packages.
“Fay has been a vital partner to Bechtel, working with us to achieve outstanding results for our customers,” said Al Hankins, Corporate Manager Procurement & Contracts. “The performance of key suppliers continues to be critical to delivering superior service to our customers and advancing innovation for the industry.”
J. Brad Homan, PE, has been promoted to Regional Aviation Lead supporting strategic growth in aviation in the greater Pittsburgh area and throughout Michael Baker’s Great Lakes Region. Brad has been with Michael Baker for over 26 years, most recently serving as the Department Manager, Aviation, in the Pittsburgh Office. Brad also serves as the Assistant Project Manager for the Multi-Modal Complex for the Pittsburgh International Terminal Modernization Program. Brad has a Master’s Certificate in Project Management from the University of Pittsburgh in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, and a Bachelor of Science degree in Civil Engineering from West Virginia University in Morgantown, West Virginia. He is a registered Professional Engineer in Pennsylvania, West Virginia, and Indiana. Brad serves as the Vice Chair for the ACEC/PA Aviation Committee and is a member of the Aviation Council of Pennsylvania.
John Tricini, PE, PLS, has been promoted to Vice President and Pittsburgh Transportation Practice Executive. John solidifies leadership in the Pittsburgh Office with his 26 years of industry experience, all at Michael Baker, and where he most recently served as the acting Transportation Practice Executive. As Practice Executive, John provides overall leadership to the group while managing the financials, operational performance, practice administration, production/project oversight, business development, and client engagement for our Highway, Traffic, Aviation and Emerging Technology services. John has a Master of Business Administration degree from Duquesne University in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, and a Bachelor of Science degree in Civil Engineering from the Pennsylvania State University in State College, Pennsylvania. He is a registered Professional Engineer and Professional Land Surveyor in Pennsylvania. John also serves on the Board of Directors of ASHE’s Pittsburgh Chapter.
Wendy Berrill, PE, has been promoted to Department Manager, Highway, and will be responsible for overseeing growth and strategic business development within Michael Baker’s Highway Design Practice within the Greater Pittsburgh Region. She has been a part of Michael Baker for 14 years and most recently served as Acting Department Manager, Highway. Throughout her career, Wendy has worked extensively on roadway design and railroad design in various roles including Design Engineer, Task Manager and Project Manager. Wendy earned a Master of Business Administration degree from Robert Morris University in Moon Township, Pennsylvania, and a Bachelor of Science degree in Civil Engineering from the University of Pittsburgh in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Wendy is a member of ASHE and serves on WTS Pittsburgh’s Board of Directors.
Jessica Belowich, PE, PTOE, has been promoted to Department Manager, Traffic, and will focus on growing the Company’s Traffic Engineering Practice within the Greater Pittsburgh Region, while identifying new opportunities for innovation. She has been with Michael Baker for 15 years, most recently serving as Acting Department Manager, Traffic. During her tenure with the Company, she has been involved with the design of numerous transportation projects, and she is currently the Lead Traffic Engineer for the I-2 Design-Build Project in Texas and the Highland Park Interchange Reconstruction Project in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Jessica earned a Master of Science degree in Civil Engineering and a Bachelor of Science degree in Civil Engineering, both from Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Jessica is a member of ASHE, ESWP and WTS.
ESWP Bronze Corporate Member and Pittsburgh-based geotechnical engineering and construction firm Nicholson Construction Company was recently awarded the contract for anchor work at a
dam in Graham County, North Carolina.
The dam is located on the Little Tennessee River and is the tallest dam east of the Rockies. Nicholson will be de-tensioning a total of 582 previously installed, post-tensioned bar anchors at the dam. Of these anchors, 561 will be de-tensioned completely from a load of approximately 175 kips to 0 kips and the load bearing assemblies will be removed, thus de-commissioning them.
The de-commissioned anchor holes will then be flushed and grouted. The remaining 21 anchors will be re-tensioned at a minimum level to permit the load cells on those anchors to track alkali aggregate reaction-induced (AAR) concrete growth over time. AAR is a chemical reaction in the cement and aggregate material that causes concrete to expand slowly over time.
Nicholson’s work on the project started in the spring of 2019.