Congratulations to our very own Rick Conner, who is a 2008 winner of Purdue University’s prestigious Civil Engineering Alumni Achievement Award. The Civil Engineering faculty makes this award based on recipients’ career achievements and contributions to the civil engineering profession. With this award, Rick joins an elite group of Purdue alumni (including our founder, Jim Wurster) who have made significant contributions to the civil engineering profession. The following career highlights show why Rick was an obvious choice for this award.
Rick began his engineering career right here at American Structurepoint at age 16, working part-time as an apprentice drafter, blueprint boy, and deliveryman. (The firm was called American Consulting Engineers, then, and had 12 employees). Those experiences directly led to Rick enrolling at Purdue University and choosing civil engineering.
While at school, Rick continued working at American Structurepoint as an engineer’s assistant, surveyor, and bridge inspector. Upon graduation, he began work as a structural engineer in our Bridge Department, designing projects like SR 912 in East Chicago. Rick was also instrumental in creating and managing a separate “Building” Structural Department, and in 1983 he was promoted to vice president. In 1986 Rick became interim head of the Architectural Department, a role he still considers one of the best experiences of his career.
Rick became a principal owner of the firm in 1987, and in 1991 was named president and COO. Under his leadership, we’ve outpaced the competition, growing from $3M in sales and 46 employees in 1987 to nearly $60M and a staff of 300 today.
Rick has been responsible for the design and management of our IT group, which has grown from a single desktop in 1974 to a 10-person department that not only supports American Structurepoint, but has become a recognized technology “enterprise” with a volume approaching $1M. His energy and entrepreneurial spirit have encouraged and expanded other capabilities within the firm—design/build, architecture, forensics, traffic engineering, and graphics, to name a few.
Over the years, Rick has been involved in many of our high-profile projects, including:
In addition to all of his work here at American Structurepoint, Rick serves with numerous professional and community organizations. He is a past board member and president of ACEC Indiana, as well as the chairman of the Noblesville Housing Authority, a vestry member at St. Michael’s Episcopal Church, and the treasurer of Purdue’s Theta Chi Fraternity alumni organization.
Congratulations, Rick, on receiving this recognition of your work as a civil engineer, and thanks for all you’ve done to make American Structurepoint such a driving force in the industry. We can’t wait to see what you’ll do next!