As we leap into spring, we’re excited to share two new hires this week. Please help us welcome Associate Principal Hollis Heron and Medical Equipment Planner Eusra Amin:
Hollis Heron, PE LEED AP, GROL
Hollis is experienced in engineering operations with a demonstrated history of working in the wireless industry. Her diverse skills across AutoCAD, electrical wiring, mechanical, electrical, and plumbing (MEP), electrical engineering, and construction management will help our Technology team continue to expand into additional projects across the country. Hollis will initiate relationships with clients, and serve as the executive point of contact, assisting the assigned project manager.
Eusra Amin, PMP
Eusra will help manage planning and design for various healthcare projects in the U.S and around the world. As an experienced Medical Equipment Planner, she will use her advanced analytical skills to collaborate with hospital operators, engineers, and architects as she works to ensure all planning activities adhere to client requirements. Eusra will also assist in revising medical equipment lists and estimated costs as projects move from schematic design through procurement and installation.
What do security systems, open-heart surgery, stoplights, and video games have in common? They were all invented by, or got an engineering revamp from, Black Americans.
As Black History Month concludes, Ross & Baruzzini recognizes the engineers, architects, and scientists that continue to impact our industries.
While this list only highlights a small number of Black pioneers, we salute all trailblazers who help inspire future generations of innovations:
Marie Van Brittan Brown (1922 – 1999)invented the first home security system and first closed-circuit television. Working as a night shift nurse, she wanted a way to increase her family’s safety while providing more time for police response in case of an emergency.
Marie devised a series of devices to monitor doors and windows with the ability to turn on or off specific areas of her home. Marie worked with her husband to wire their house, developing the first fully operational home alarm.
Gerald “Jerry” Lawson (1940 – 2011) tinkered with electronics growing up in Queens, earning extra money for his television repair skills. Mostly self-taught, his curiosity in computing led him to Silicon Valley. Eventually, he met with Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak.
Lawson went on to create the first video game console with interchangeable cartridges at Fairchild Semiconductor, making way for the future of gaming. A crucial element of the invention was the use of a new processor, the Fairchild 8. Another important invention was a mechanism allowing for repeated insertion and removal of cartridges without damaging the machine’s semiconductors.
Daniel Williams, MD. (1858 – 1931) was the first Black American cardiologist who performed successful open-heart surgery in 1893. He founded the first interracial hospital, Provident Hospital and Training School, and also co-founded the National Medical Association, a professional organization for Black medical practitioners. He earned his medical degree from Chicago Medical College.
Katherine Johnson (1918 – 2020) is widely heralded as one of NASA’s human ‘computers,’ Johnson performed the complex calculations that enabled humans that successfully sent astronauts into orbit in the early 1960s and to the moon in 1969. Her story is depicted in the 2016 movie ‘Hidden Figures.’
Johnson continued to work as a key asset for NASA, helping to develop its Space Shuttle program and Earth Resources Satellite, until her retirement in 1986.
Lilia A. Abron (b. 1945) is the first Black American woman to earn a Ph.D. in chemical engineering. In 1978, while she was the only female professor at Howard University’s College of Engineering, she shattered another barrier as the first Black female environmental engineer to start an engineering consulting firm with an environmental focus.
Abron has worked on a wide range of projects from aging water infrastructure programs to harbor cleanups all around the U.S.
Elijah McCoy “The Actual Real McCoy” (1844 – 1929) trained as an engineer in Scotland as a teenager. Unable to find an engineering position in the United States, he took a job working for a railroad and subsequently invented a lubrication device to make railroad operations more efficient. The story goes that many tried to copy his design with disappointing results, leading to the expression “the real McCoy.”
Garrett Augustus Morgan Jr. (1877–1963) made one of the most significant advancements in traffic control when he improved the traffic signal. After witnessing a major crash, Morgan received a patent in 1923 to add a warning light to the then two-light system.
Back then, most traffic signals only had two positions: stop and go. Morgan’s t-shaped design added a third position halting all traffic. This would allow the intersection to clear before a light turned green. Vehicle crashes decreased significantly, and we still use this innovative safety technology in traffic control today.
Lewis H. Latimer (1848 – 1928) was born to parents who had fled slavery. Latimer learned the art of mechanical drawing while working at a patent firm. Over the course of his career as a draftsman, Latimer worked closely with Thomas Edison and Alexander Graham Bell, in addition to designing his own inventions including an early air conditioning unit.
2021 was another eventful year, but our teams remained steadfast as we dealt with competing deadlines, hybrid work schedules, and global events that affected our life outside of work.
Looking ahead, there is some uncertainty. Our world is becoming more complex, with diverse markets and technology interconnecting. We will continue to focus on providing secure, resilient spaces where our communities live, work, and relax.
As we settle into the new year, let’s explore our top stories from 2021:
Building Design+Construction (BD+C) listed Ross & Baruzzini as one of the Top 40 Engineering/Architecture Firms for 2021. We also ranked across their Healthcare, Data Center, Higher Education, and Commercial listings.
We want to thank BD+C magazine for the recognition as well as our employees, clients, and partners who empower us to design tech-forward projects across the world.
Ross & Baruzzini proudly supports the advancement of women in our industry, which is why we invest in organizations like CREW Network. The CREW-St. Louis chapter recognized women in AEC for their contributions to the city’s economy and built environments.
Ross & Baruzzini was honored to be a part of this impactful evening in September as a member of CREW’s awards committee.
This project is the first comprehensive inpatient hospital project in South Carolina with LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) certification at any level. In addition, our firm’s recommendations as Acoustical Consultant earned two LEED points for Healthcare Acoustics, without which, this project would not have reached the point total required for overall LEED Silver Certification.
The Ross & Baruzzini team had a great night at the St. Louis Biz Dash 5K. We’re proud to promote employee health and team building while supporting our local communities. Proceeds from Biz Dash 5K go to the St. Louis Sports Commission which promotes sportsmanship in the community and fosters a culture of kindness, respect, and selflessness.
“The 2021 Hot Firms are a confirmation of the vigor and resilience of the AEC industry,” said Zweig Group CEO Chad Clinehens.
Ross & Baruzzini was listed on the 2021 Hot Firm Award by the Zweig Group, which recognizes the fastest-growing firms in the architecture, engineering, planning, environmental, and construction (AEC) industry. Firms are ranked based on three-year growth in revenue, by both percentage and dollar growth.
Recently featured on the Engineering News-Record Midwest Best Project Award List, Ross & Baruzzini provided engineering services for the St. Louis Zoo Primate Canopy Trails Expansion.
Winning the “Best Project Cultural” category, this project adds 35,000 sq ft of new outdoor habitats for chimpanzees, lemurs, and colobus monkeys. The Primate Canopy Trails also provides visitors unique opportunities to experience life with the animals from vantage points such as a 200-ft-long, winding steel boardwalk at tall treetop levels.
We are so proud of our Manhattan West team for winning the 2021 Security Vanguard Top Project Award. With construction beginning nearly a decade ago, our Security team was tasked to build a future-proof security technology strategy while collaborating with Brookfield Properties and architectural firm Skidmore, Owings & Merrill.
The new mixed-use development includes five buildings, a 1.5-acre public park, a high-end retail mall, train station extension, and more.
In June, we celebrated the completion of design work for the Infosys Education center in Indianapolis. This global technology company is building a 160,000 sf state-of-the-art training campus and residential center to prepare employees for cutting-edge tech jobs.
“Over twenty employees joined the 2021 R&B Rainbow Run | Walk | Bike for Pride Month in June showing off their athletic achievements, earning Vitality points, and supporting the #LGBTQIA+ community.” – Mike Maselli, DE&I Committee Co-Chair and Technology Principal.
Although Pride month is over, we’re excited to continue our support for LGBTQIA+ and other global communities.
Designed for students, staff, and the greater Kansas City community, this hub features $3 million worth of fabrication and prototyping equipment, industrial and research-grade 3D printing equipment, along with augmented, virtual, and mixed reality equipment.
Ross & Baruzzini provided Engineering services including Mechanical, Plumbing, and Fire Protection systems for this addition to the Flarsheim Science and Technology Hall on the University of Missouri-Kansas City campus.
Two Ross & Baruzzini projects received recognition in the Building St. Louis Awards 2021. Our engineering teams supported the winning Washington University East End Transformation as well as the St. Charles Community College agriculture and food science building.
Published by Rolling Stone, our Aviation Security Consulting Team worked with the Port of Seattle to provide an After Action Report (AAR) on the incident of ‘The Sky Thief: Beebo Russell’s Last Flight’. Ross & Baruzzini encourages a deeper look into the article to view the whole incident and the importance of providing mental health awareness to help make airports safer and more secure.
Ross & Baruzzini is proud to be a finalist in the St. Louis Business Journal’s 2021 Best Places to Work. A four-time nominee for this distinction, our company is proud of our vibrant culture guided by integrity, hard work, and collaboration across a diverse range of teams.
Last year was another one-of-a-kind ride, but our dedication to our communities remains the same. Thank you for being a part of our 2021 journey, and stay tuned for some major news updates later this year.
Leading Industry Magazine Recognizes Ross & Baruzzini Across Multiple Markets:
Building Design + Construction (BD+C), a notable architecture, engineering, and construction (AEC) industry magazine, recently recognized Ross & Baruzzini across several markets including their Top 40 Engineering/Architecture Firms for 2021 list. These lists are based on revenue earned during the previous calendar year.
“We are pleased to see that our organization is again listed as one of the foremost engineering and design firms across multiple disciplines,” said Craig Toder, President and Chairman. “Through transformational technology and engineering solutions, we transform buildings into living systems for our clients to enhance users’ experiences.”
BD+C is currently publishing their full rankings, with initial listings released in August 2021. As the publication announces additional results, we look forward to ranking in other key verticals such as education, government, and technology. This consistent performance demonstrates our commitment to sustainable and equitable designs.
“We design innovative technology enabling buildings that support and contribute to a more environmentally neutral sustainable future,” said John Desch, Chief Commercial Officer. “Our designs prioritize comfort, safety, control, and confidence.”
Other Ross & Baruzzini rankings include:
#6 – Top 50 Outpatient Facility Engineering and EA Firms #12 – Top 95 Healthcare Sector Engineering and EA Firms #13 – Top 40 Transit Facility Engineering and EA Firms for 2021 #15 – Top 85 Hospital Facility Engineering and EA Firms #23 – Top 70 Airport Facility Engineering and EA Firms #24 – Top 40 Engineering/Architecture Firms #26 – Top 85 University Sector Engineering and EA Firms #29 – Top 55 Data Center Sector Engineering and EA Firms #34 – Top 85 Office Building/Core+Shell Engineering and EA #45 – Top 95 Office Sector Engineering and EA Firms
Ross & Baruzzini was recently listed on the 2021 Hot Firm Award by the Zweig Group. The list recognizes the fastest growing firms in the architecture, engineering, planning, environmental and construction (AEC) industry. Firms are ranked based on three-year growth in revenue, by both percentage and dollar growth.
“The 2021 Hot Firms are a confirmation of the vigor and resilience of the AEC industry,” said Zweig Group CEO Chad Clinehens.
The list was assembled based on a survey of industry firms conducted by the Zweig Group, the publisher of The Zweig Letter, and a leader in enhancing business performance for architecture, engineering, planning and environmental consulting firms.
Our ranking on this year’s list reflects our employee’s dedication to our mission and long-term strategy. In the past year, Ross & Baruzzini has been committed to strengthening the company’s growth by investing in thought-leadership, new technologies, and tactical business planning.
Winners will be celebrated at both the virtual and in-person versions of the Elevate AEC Conference. Read the full list of the 2021 Hot Firm winners here.
Ross & Baruzzini is a proud silver sponsor for the 2021 SMART Airports Conference & Exhibition. This premier event covers how SMART airports and their adjacent regions are leveraging connectivity to stimulate innovation and opportunity.
2021 SMART Airports Conference & Exhibition leads the way with its innovative, interactive agenda:
The most comprehensive community of SMART airports and the regions they serve, focusing on the opportunities and innovations that technology is bringing to environments, communities and cities
Up to 500 senior level attendees and decision makers
Opportunity to learn from visionary speakers and thinkers
Extensive and intimate opportunities to network with this progressive audience across 3 days.
Our Security team has expanded with the hiring of Robert Warmack, as Lead Security Consultant; Vince Aragon, PSP, CPP, as Lead Security Consultant, and Charles Messenger as Associate Engineer.
Robert Warmack | Lead Security Consultant
As a Lead Security Consultant, Robert will analyze security systems, assess potential breach areas, and recommend appropriate solutions for our clients.
With over a decade of industry experience, Robert received his Bachelor’s degree in Legal Studies from the University of Mississippi and has worked as Corporate Security Manager for the Georgia Power Company.
Vince Aragon | Lead Security Consultant
Vince Aragon, PSP, CPP will also work as a Lead Security Consultant, managing security project designs and ensuring projects are compliant with standard implementation.
Vince is an U.S. Navy veteran with previous experience at Stanley Security Solutions and Burns & McDonnell. He holds two Bachelor degrees from Missouri State University.
Charles Messenger | Associate Engineer
As an Associate Engineer, Charles Messenger will implement and monitor security measures for the protection of systems, networks, and information.
With a Master of Science in Homeland Security and Emergency Management from Purdue University Global, Charles is an experienced project engineer with a strong background in physical security.
To learn more about current security job openings with Ross & Baruzzini, visit our careers page.
This June, Ross & Baruzzini honored Pride Month! This important milestone recognizes the lasting impact of LGBTQIA+ individuals and allies in U.S history and across the world.
To show support and raise awareness for the LGBTQIA+ community, our Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DE&I) committee invited our employees to take part in the R&B Rainbow Run | Walk | Bike for Pride event.
Employees were encouraged to wear colors from the Pride flag and share their workout photos:
Participants also earned points for our company health and wellness program, Vitality.
“Over twenty employees joined the 2021 R&B Rainbow Run | Walk | Bike for Pride Month in June showing off their athletic achievements, earning Vitality points, and supporting the LGBTQIA+ community,” said Mike Maselli, DE&I Committee Co-Chair and Technology Principal. “No world records were broken this year but with a little training, anything is possible. Thanks to all who participated and took one small step, or several thousand, to improve our company culture and inclusion.”
Although Pride month is over, we’re excited to continue our support for LGBTQIA+ and other global communities. Follow Ross & Baruzzini on LinkedIn to join the ongoing dialogue.
Ross & Baruzzini was named a finalist on the St. Louis Business Journal’s 2021 Best Places to Work list in the “Large – 100 to 249 Employees” category.
A four-time nominee for this distinction, our company is proud of our vibrant culture guided by integrity, hard work, and collaboration across a diverse range of teams.
All participating companies and their employees completed surveys administered by Quantum Workplace, which used its own algorithm to measure communication, management structure, benefits, teamwork and several other factors at each local firm.
The companies were grouped by size, then were ranked by Quantum to determine St. Louis’ most employee-friendly workplaces.
“We are thrilled to be a St. Louis Business Journal’s Best Places to Work finalist,” said Craig Toder, President and Chairman of the Board. “I am grateful for our strong, people-driven philosophy, innovative projects, and creative team that build the foundation of our firm’s success.”
Our mission is to bring the industry’s best to our teams. For more information about careers at Ross & Baruzzini, click here.
Since taking the helm of our Indianapolis office in 2019, Brian Grimes, P.E, has continued to drive a client-centric philosophy, strengthen business operations, and manage multi-million dollar deals.
Brian’s engineering background spans 20 years, with responsibilities including design, project management, construction, commissioning, and technical oversight.
When you started at Ross & Baruzzini Indianapolis, what were your goals?
My goals were centered on two main points – expanding our project portfolio, specifically high performance buildings, and developing new relationships across different market sectors throughout Indiana.
What kinds of projects is the Indy team working on?
Our primary focus right now is Higher Education with a mix of K-12, healthcare, government, and industrial projects.
How does the Ross & Baruzzini approach facilitate success across this range of project types?
The key is teamwork. By collaborating and sharing technical expertise across all our offices across the country, we can execute projects that would normally be out of reach for most engineering companies.
In your time with Ross & Baruzzini what has been your favorite project so far and why?
The INFOSYS LEED Platinum project is one of my favorite projects so far. It is a large, multi-building project with the potential for design and construction of several more buildings over the next decade.
Another top choice is the Indiana University School of Medicine project. This is a large project in downtown Indianapolis with the potential to be a spotlight project for many years to come.
Looking ahead, where would you like to see the Indy office in the next five years?
I am working towards growing and diversifying our client list while continuing to provide excellent engineering solutions to current partners.