Our culture is a culture of excellence and growth. We push ourselves to be the best. We push ourselves to grow whether it is technically or in the business. And when we are ready to take the next step, we know that the opportunity will be there for us to take the next step.
My career with Degenkolb has been full of opportunities. There have been opportunities to take on challenging projects. There have been opportunities to explore my technical interests. And there have been opportunities to get out of the office and be involved in the general AEC community. It is through an opportunity to talk to a group of high school students in 2004 that I became involved in the ACE Mentor Program and continue to remain involved. While working with a team of great people from other local architecture, construction, and engineering firms at several high schools in downtown Los Angeles, I get to interface with other professionals who share my interests and I get to make a difference with some students who really need our help.
What I love about my job is that we make a difference. We design complicated structures for buildings that will serve our communities. We design seismic retrofits of buildings that can keep those buildings in service for years to come. And we can see and we can touch the final product. The result of all of the collaboration with the team and the resulting effort put into developing a great design is something real. It is something that I am proud to be part of making happen.
One of the most difficult but rewarding experiences in my career was my volunteer deployment to St. Bernard Parish, Louisiana following Hurricanes Rita and Katrina. Along with a group of other engineers, building officials, inspectors, and architects, I performed rapid structural assessments of buildings throughout the Parish identifying buildings as “inspected”, “restricted use”, or “unsafe”. It was through the training and support provided by Degenkolb that I was able to leave my projects behind for 9 days and make a difference at a time when help was so desperately needed.