Press Release

GEI Adds Ten Industry Experts

April 30, 2014

Multi-disciplined additions further strengthen national consulting firm

BOSTON—April 24, 2014 — GEI Consultants, Inc., one of the nation’s leading geotechnical, environmental, water resources, and ecological science and engineering firms, announced today it has added ten senior professionals, strengthening numerous practice areas across the United States. Their areas of expertise include: water resources planning, management and policy; flood management; solid waste engineering; earthquake and seismic engineering; geostructural engineering; hydraulic modeling; site development; construction management; and nuclear engineering. “GEI continues its strong growth by delivering superior results to satisfied clients and attracting top talent to join our ranks,” said Ray Hart, P.E., president of GEI. “I am proud to welcome these ten senior professionals to GEI, and am looking forward to our collective success.”

Western Region

Chris A. Ferrari, P.E., senior professional in GEI’s Rancho Cordova, Calif. office, has 25 years of experience in flood management for both public and private clients. While working within the private sector, he was recently the project engineering lead to develop a Lower Sacramento River hydraulic systems model for the California Department of Water Resources (DWR) flood reduction planning efforts. This project was also carried out in close coordination with the United States Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) Sacramento District. In addition, Mr. Ferrari worked closely with both the City of Sacramento and the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to remove approximately 3,000 homes from the Special flood hazard Zone in South Sacramento with the approval of a Letter of Map Revision in December 2013. His experience includes bridge and culvert evaluations including scour evaluations, stormwater master planning, and detailed drainage evaluations for highways. He was previously employed by Wood Rodgers, Inc. where he worked on other parts of the FloodSAFE program for flood control protection projects in California. Chris is a professional civil engineer in the state of California, and is a member of the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE), the American Public Works Association (APWA), and the Floodplain Management Association (FMA). He received a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering from the California State University at Sacramento.

Rick H. Hydrick, senior professional in GEI’s Rancho Cordova, Calif. office, has more than 40 years of experience managing diverse water and wastewater operations involving groundwater contamination, regulatory compliance and advocacy, litigation, master planning, and capital improvement projects. Prior to joining GEI, Rick delivered major water operations projects including the Lake Tahoe Demonstration Garden, the San Juan Water District’s Solar Project and the Fallen Leaf Lake Sewer Improvement Project located five miles south of Lake Tahoe near the California-Nevada state border. Additionally, Rick has managed and participated in numerous groundwater investigations. He earned two 30-year member awards from the Association of California Water Agencies and the American Water Works Association; and holds a bachelor’s degree in history from the University of California, Davis and a master’s degree in history from the University of Oregon.

Michelle Shriro, P.E., G.E., senior geotechnical engineer in GEI’s Oakland, Calif. office, has more than 10 years of consulting experience focused on geotechnical engineering. As a doctoral candidate at the University of California Berkeley, Michelle’s research involved evaluating the static and seismic stability of levee systems, particularly on how vegetation affects structural integrity. She was also a seismology minor with teaching experience in earthquake engineering. Formerly employed by ENGEO Incorporated, her project experience includes geotechnical engineering for the redevelopment of the Mare Island Naval Base; project management for a mixed-use redevelopment of a former dynamite factory at the Hercules Waterfront; geotechnical engineering for a new fuel farm at the Oakland Airport; and levee system design and exploration at the Bel Marin Keys Wetland Restoration adjacent to the Hamilton Air Force Base, in Novato, Calif. She is a member and past chair of the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) San Francisco section, and won the Association of State Dam Safety Officials (ASDSO) student paper competition in 2011. Michelle received her bachelor’s degree in environmental engineering and her master’s degree in mineral engineering from UC Berkley, and her doctorate in geotechnical engineering is expected in 2014.

Kenneth Slattery, a senior professional in GEI’s Seattle, Wash. office, has more than 34 years of professional experience with the State of Washington in water resources management, policy development, planning and organizational leadership, which includes six years as the Department of Ecology’s Water Resources Program Manager, the state’s highest ranking water resources official. He led more than 150 staff supporting issuance, regulation and adjudication of water rights; dam safety; well drilling; water information management; and protection and restoration of instream flows. Ken participated in every significant policy initiative and debate regarding water resources over three decades in the state of Washington regarding watershed planning, water use efficiency, water right processing and use fees, salmon recovery and climate change. He also analyzed hundreds of legislative bills on water, and authored numerous pieces of water resources legislation and amendments including bills on water conservation, instream flow protection and restoration, water rights, and trust water rights. In addition, he was a member of an interagency team that conceived of and authored federal Yakima River Basin Water Enhancement Project legislation that passed into law in 1994. Ken received a bachelor’s degree in geography from Western Washington State College, and took graduate classes in urban and regional planning from the University of Washington.

Leo H. Winternitz, senior professional in GEI’s Rancho Cordova, Calif. office, has 39 years of experience with water resources planning, management and policy in the state of California. He will also be working on strategic integrated water planning projects focused on the Sacramento River and Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta. Much of his career has been spent developing key partnerships with public and private organizations to identify and resolve technical issues related to the restoration and conservation of waterways within the Sacramento and San Joaquin valleys. Widely recognized, Leo has published articles and frequently presented on topics on water quality, water resources and natural habitats, and has been honored with a Distinguished Service Award from the Sacramento Regional Water Authority, as well as two Outstanding Professional Accomplishment commendations from the California Department of Water Resources (DWR). He holds a bachelor’s degree in biology from Gonzaga University, and a master’s degree in environmental management with an emphasis on water resources from the University of San Francisco.

Central Region

Allan R. Blaske, P.G., C.P.G., senior project geologist in GEI’s Lansing, Mich. office, has 27 years of experience as a senior geological technical resource for environmental remediation, hydrogeologic investigations, geophysical surveying, and general site geology projects throughout Michigan. The bulk of his career has involved performing environmental impact studies at mining sites; working on environmental projects involving hydrogeologic site investigations, soil and groundwater remediation systems, and remediation pilot testing procedures; water resources development; geophysical surveys; and engineering-related geology pertaining to dam stability, rock core logging for foundations, tunnels and navigation locks, and rock hardness testing for trenching and pipeline installation. Allan is a registered professional geologist in the state of Kentucky, a registered licensed geologist in the state of North Carolina, a member of the American Institute of Professional geologists, and a Michigan Certified Underground Storage Tank Professional. Widely published, he received bachelor’s and master’s degrees in geology from Michigan Technological University.

Chad Donnelly, P.E., senior professional in GEI’s Minneapolis, Minn. office, has 15 years of demonstrated civil and environmental engineering experience focused on solid waste engineering and site remediation, potable water systems, and program management. An expert in state regulatory compliance statutes, Chad has managed environmental investigation and site remediation projects, environmental clean-up activities, spill prevention control and countermeasure (SPCC) plans, stormwater pollution prevention plans (SWPPP), and wastewater system improvements at large commercial and industrial projects throughout Minnesota. His portfolio includes commercial and residential site development; wells and water systems; contaminated material handling and disposal; preparation of environmental management plans; and solid waste engineering. Chad received a bachelor’s degree in engineering from the University of St. Thomas, as well as a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering from North Dakota State University. He is professionally licensed in the state of Minnesota.

Steven A. Elver, P.E., S.E., senior consultant in GEI’s Chicago office, has more than 30 years of experience providing site and property assessment services, structural evaluation, rehabilitation and design services, as well as construction oversight for buildings, dams and hydroelectric facilities. Prior to joining GEI, Steve delivered major industrial and commercial design projects as engineer-of-record, including the new Badger Hydroelectric Rehabilitation Project in Kaukauna, Wis.; Cooling Tower Structural Evaluation and Repairs for WE Energies in Pleasant Prairie, Wis.; Eau Pleine Dam Spillway Upgrades for Wisconsin Valley Improvement Company near Mosinee, Wis.; and the Bristol Quarry Landfill for the City of Bristol, Va.; among others. With GEI, Steve will serve as lead investigator, designer and engineer-ofrecord for hydroelectric rehabilitation projects, buildings and concrete dams. Steve is a former president and board member of the Structural Engineers Association of Ill., a member of the American Society of Civil Engineers, the Society of American Military Engineers and a member of the Association of State Dam Safety Officials. He has coauthored articles related to hydroelectric redevelopment, building upgrades and landfill design. Steve holds a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering – structures from the University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee, is a licensed professional engineer in nine states, and a licensed structural engineer in three. He is also an approved Federal Energy Regulatory Commission Independent Consultant.

Eastern Region

Ira Beer, senior practice leader in GEI’s Manhattan office, has 19 years of experience in the design and construction of excavation support systems, drilled pile foundations, and computer modeling of structures and soil-structure interaction. Previously with Mueser Rutledge Consulting Engineers, Ira has provided design and construction support for deep excavations in and around New York City, including modeling and designing of slurry walls, secant pile walls and excavation bracing for the East Side Access Project Northern Blvd Crossing, the Con Edison Harlem River Tunnel and the Harbor Siphon Tunnel Project; designed caisson foundations for multiple buildings near the World Trade Center site; and minipile foundations at multiple sites throughout the city. Additional experience includes driven pile foundations, retaining walls and bridge abutments, column load transfer and support, and rock excavations. He is a member of the subcommittee that updated the chapter on soils and foundations for the upcoming 2014 NYC Building code. Ira received his bachelor’s degree in civil engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and his master’s degree in civil engineering with an emphasis on structural engineering from Stanford University.

Stephen Geier, P.E., senior project manager in GEI’s nuclear practice located in Washington, D.C., has 35 years of experience in the nuclear power industry. Previously employed by Constellation Energy Nuclear Group and UniStar Nuclear Energy, Stephen’s experience includes construction, licensing, engineering, and operations management at several well-known nuclear power plants including Nine Mile Point (NY) and Calvert Cliffs (MD). While with UniStar, Steve led the site investigation, engineering, and licensing work resulting in the submittal of Combined Operating License Applications (COLA) for new nuclear plant projects at Nine Mile Point and Bell Bend (Pa). A professional engineer in the state of New York, Stephen is affiliated with the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) and the National Society of Professional Engineers (NSPE). He received a bachelor’s degree in civil and environmental engineering from Clarkson University, and a master’s of business administration from Lemoyne College.

About GEI: GEI’s multidisciplinary team of engineers, scientists, and planners deliver integrated water resources, environmental, ecological, geotechnical and waterfront engineering solutions to diverse clientele nationwide. The firm has provided a broad range of consulting and engineering services on over 50,000 projects in 50 states and 22 countries. For more information on GEI, please visit

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