Source: ACEC 2014 Annual Conference website (, Dec 17, 2017

Educational Sessions

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

8:30am-2pm Sales and Marketing Forum
Join industry professionals and share ideas, promote best practices and network with peers.
1:45pm-4:45pm CEO Roundtables
Join CEOs and other executives from firms nationwide for an interactive discussion of best practices and business issues.
    Small Firm (1-50 employees)
    Medium Firm (51-200 employees)
    Large Firm (201-500 employees)
    Very Large Firm (501+ employees)
2pm-5pm Generation Flux: Leadership for Generation Y and Beyond
Geordie Aitken, Aitken Leadership Group
Explore beliefs, behaviors and communication styles representing the typical "four generation" workplace. Gain candid insights about the best ways to successfully integrate today's up-and-comers into your workforce.

Thursday, October 23, 2014

6:30am-7:45am Impact of Emerging Technologies on Engineering Business
Paul Doherty, the digit group
Global and local market conditions, process redesign, and technology innovations are forcing A/E firms to change how technology and process decisions are made and how technology tools are leveraged.

Recruit, Retain & Reward — the Next Generation of Engineers
Katy MacDonald, Exact Source; Matt Keene, Chartwell Capital Solutions
Learn the latest trends in recruiting, compensation strategies, and how to develop and reward your current and future star performers.

Case Study — Innovations in Asset Management
Mike Baker, David Evans and Associates, Inc.
As government agencies focus on asset management nationally, it's important to learn how to use risk-based analysis to successfully guide capital programming decisions. Explore how such a risk-based assessment approach was used to develop a multi-billion dollar, 20-year capital improvement plan for six major bridge crossings in Portland, Oregon.

COPS/LDC Session: Engineering Approaches to Disaster Risk
Stephen Long, The Nature Conservancy
Discuss examples of successful collaboration on public infrastructure including dams, transportation, and water; the latest science on impacts of extreme weather; and tools for assessing coastal risks and alternative solutions.

CASE Risk Management Convocation Session: Addressing the Hidden Risks in Today's Design Contracts
Brian Stewart, Collins, Collins, Muir & Stewart; James Schwartz, Beazley; Rob Hughes, Ames & Gough
Engineering contracts often contain subtle language that can result in higher standards of care, overly broad risk transfer, and potentially uninsured exposures. Examine the new contract language, its consequences, and how to negotiate more practical terms.
8am-10am Opening General Session
"America's Mid-Term Elections — Who Will Win and What it Means"
Charlie Cook
Renowned Political Analyst and Editor/Publisher of The Cook Political Report

Widely regarded as the nation's keenest observer of U.S. elections and political trends, Charlie Cook references his encyclopedic knowledge of American politics, memorable stories, quick wit, and meaningful insights to provide the sharpest political handicapping in the country. His presentation will focus on the implications of states' electoral leanings, what it all means for the upcoming Presidential contest, what will likely happen in the House and Senate, and what the results mean for the two parties (and the American people).

CEO Panel: Engineering Business Outlook 2015
John Carlson, Braun Intertec
Bill Siegel, Kleinfelder
Donald Stone, Dewberry
8am-5pm Legal Counsel Forum I
The Legal Counsel Forum was established to meet the needs of in-house and outside legal counsel who advise ACEC member firms. The Forum hosts discussions on a wide range of current legal issues important to member firms. Participants in the Forum are attorneys representing ACEC member firms.
10:30am-11:45am Creating Efficiencies Through Technology
Matt Pfohl, GeoSPec Systems; Craig Hill, Earth Systems; Jim Jacobi, Walter P Moore; Ted Kempf, Microsoft
Discover technology options to migrate your systems from a legacy to ERP system to improve your business performance.

Preparing Your Firm for Sale
Neil Churman, Morrissey Goodale
Examine the key strategic, financial, cultural, and management elements that can make or break a successful firm sale. Get examples of some of the do's and don'ts from real industry transactions.

Thinking Outside the Box — Growing Your Firm Through Unconventional Business Start-Ups
Mark Tawara, SSFM International, Inc.; Scot McQueen, GeoEngineers, Inc.; Patrick Sullivan, Oceanit; Ryan Suydam, Client Feedback Tool
Hear how three A/E firms have successfully launched unconventional business start-ups within their firms, providing additional cash flow and innovation to enhance their existing business practices.

NAECE Session: How to Grow Your Association (Part I)
Kordell Norton, Revenue Mechanic
Learn practices that will grow your association membership including easy-to-use and creative ways to improve retention, increase volunteerism, and develop a powerful leadership team that is committed to success.

CASE Risk Management Convocation Session: The Five Commandments of A&E Risk
Dan Buelow, Willis A&E
Participants will get a risk management crash course. Topics will include documentation, construction administration, contract negotiation, standard of care, and managing client expectations.
12noon-2pm General Session Luncheon
"UNthink — The Art of Innovation and Leadership"
Erik Wahl
Internationally Recognized Business Strategist, Author and Artist

As an internationally recognized business strategists, artist, and a #1 best-selling business author, Erik redefines the term "keynote speaker." He has grown to become one of the most sought-after corporate speakers today. Erik's on-stage painting seamlessly becomes a visual metaphor to the core of his message, encouraging organizations toward profitability through innovative leadership. Erik is the author of the #1 Bestselling Business book, UNTHINK. UNthink was honored by prestigious CEOReads as being awarded the #1 Business "Book of the Year" in 2013.

"UNthink" is the signature keynote experience from Erik's bestselling book. It is dynamic multi media keynote experience specifically designed to challenge audiences to achieve innovative thinking and superior levels of performance.
2:30pm-3:45pm Global File Locking — The Way to Solve BIM Collaboration Issues
Randy Chou, Panzura; Andy Knauf, Mead & Hunt; Eric Quinn, C&S Companies; Markus Weidner, NELSON
BIM is revolutionizing the A/E/C Industry, but the gains can be limited when project teams span across multiple sites. Leading firms discuss the business benefits of moving to effective cross-site project collaboration.

Is an ESOP Right For Your Firm?
Howard Kaplan, Benefit Trust Company; Lynn DuBois, ESOP Law Group
What is an ESOP, really? How do they work and what financial metrics and mechanisms do they require? Determine if an ESOP is the right fit for your firm.

Asian Markets — Opportunities and Risks
Dr. Charles Morrison, The East-West Center
Learn how Asian clients and engineers view U.S. firms as potential providers and teaming partners and understand trends, opportunities, and dangers of the new marketplace.

NAECE Session: How to Grow Your Association (Part II)
Kordell Norton, Revenue Mechanic
Continuation of Part I.

CASE Risk Management Convocation Session: Managing the Emerging and Enduring Risks of Professional Practice
Karen Erger, Lockton Cos.; Eric Singer, Ice Miller LLP
Analyze several real-life case studies, identifying the causes of risk and how to apply tools and tactics to manage risk.

Friday, October 24, 2014

6:30am-7:30am ACEC/PAC Sweepstakes Breakfast
7:30am-9am General Session
"Development of America's New Energy Infrastructure"
Commissioner Tony Clark, Federal Energy Regulation Commission
Information coming soon

Expert Panel
"Opportunities in Booming Energy Markets"
Bakken Field — Steve Bakken, Larson Engineering and radio host of "Energy Matters"
Texas Perspective — Kendall King, Freese and Nichols
Marcellus Field — Tony Bartolomeo, Pennoni Associates
Engineering for Energy Delivery — Leo Golden, Enbridge, Inc.
8am-12noon Legal Counsel Forum II
9am-9:30am Networking Break with Exhibitors
9:15am-10:30am CIO Roundtable: Collaborating in a Fast-Paced World
Steve Ross, Thornton Tomasetti; Jim Jacobi, Walter P Moore; Andy Knauf, Mead and Hunt
The explosion of computing technology demands require CIOs to keep up with fast-paced changes while also adapting business models for what's coming next. Join the conversation to explore how collaboration and "the cloud" can address some of the key technological challenges in today's A/E/C firms.

ESOPs Implementation — Getting It Done
Katie Daly, Chartwell Capital Solutions; Larry Goldberg, ESOP Law Group
Before you finalize your ESOP decision, take a deeper look at those elements critical for a successful implementation, including corporate governance, M&A challenges, and repurchase obligations.

State Transportation Funding Initiatives — Recent Case Studies and Lessons Learned
Eric Madden, ACEC/PA; Paula Hammond, Parsons Brinckerhoff
The outlook for federal funding increases for transportation projects is murky at best, so state and local governments are searching for alternatives to supplement existing funds. This overview offers examples of recent successful approaches, including state and local revenue sources, P3s, private financing of public projects, and other initiatives.

Dare to be Different: Developing an Effective Differentiation Strategy
Clare Ross, the Clare Ross Organization, Inc.
Learn how to differentiate your firm from your competitors to win business.

Relation of Firm Size to Long-Term Viability
Rod Hoffman, S&H Consulting, LLC; Jeff Holocomb, WHPacific; Gerry Salontai, Salontai Consulting Group, LLC
This analysis of ENR 500 firms examines how firm size can impact a company's life-span.
11am-12:15pm Geotechnical Strata Modeling and Plans Productions
Alexander Mabrich, Bentley Systems
Examine how to process and analyze geotechnical data in real time in order to achieve better representation of the ground and subsurface conditions. Learn how to provide better analysis to represent the substrata modeling and use civil and drafting tools for final geotechnical plans.

Using Advanced Metrics to Better Assess Marketing ROI
Chris Nordfors, GeoEngineers, Inc.
Being able to assess the ROI of your web and social media marketing program is critical. Examine a range of proven approaches, including web analysis, usability testing, and other quantifiable strategies to measure your marketing program's performance.

The Latest on P3s
Justin Weisberg, Arnstein & Lehr LLP
Hear about the terms and provisions of P3-508, the first standard form P3 agreement developed by EJCDC. Learn many of the general concepts used in current P3 projects.

U.S. Government Initiatives and Private-Sector Work in Asia-Pacific Markets
Jim McCarthy and Vinay Singh, U.S. Department of Commerce; Jonathan Thompson, U.S. Department of State; and resources/industrial firms in the Asia Market.
This session will address the administration's "Pivot to the Pacific" initiative, Foreign Military Sales support, private sector activities, and other trends and opportunities for public and private work in Asia/Pacific countries.

ACEC's New Engineering Business Index — Latest Findings on Industry Trends
PSteve Isaacs, FMI; Alan Crockett and Gerry Donohue, ACEC
Review the latest findings of ACEC’s new Engineering Business Index (EBI), produced in conjunction with FMI. Conducted quarterly with ACEC Member Firm leaders, the EBI generates unique data on industry trends and market performance, and promises to serve as a leading economic indicator for the industry.
12:15pm-2pm Awards Luncheon and Guest Speaker Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard (D, Hi-2)
2:30pm-3:45pm Recruiting and Utilizing Outside Directors for Your Company Board
Tim Psomas, Psomas; Ralph Christie, Merrick & Company; Gerry Salontai, Salontai Consulting Group, LLC; Cathy Ritter, Constellation Design Group, Inc.
Approximately 300 ACEC member firms use outside directors on their company boards. How do they identify and recruit the right outside members and what are the best practices today?

High Performing Engineering Firms — The 3 Pillars of Project management Excellence
Mike Bourgeois, Deltek
According to the 35th Annual Deltek Clarity A&E Industry Study, produced in collaboration with ACEC, high performing firms are relentless in their pursuit of operational excellence. Hear details of what makes them so successful and learn best practices and real-world examples of firm project management excellence.

Mergers & Acquisitions — Challenges & Opportunities
Chris Staloch, Chartwell Capital Solutions; Terry Neimeyer, KCI Technologies, Inc.; Paul Gardiner, Cardno
Find out why there is such divergence in company values and what the market is telling us today about where the M&A market is headed.

SEI Leadership Workshop: The Growth Mindset & Strategies for Long-Term Success (continues until 5pm)
Geordie Aitken, Aitken Leadership Group; Kyle Davy, Kyle V. Davy Consulting; Rod Hoffman, S&H Consulting; Executive Panel: William Stout, Gannett Fleming; Blake Murillo, Psomas; Kenny Smith, T. Baker Smith Engineers
Change is required for leaders who want to drive outstanding personal and organizational performance. Examine unproductive habits and behaviors that interfere with innovation and long term firm success. Hear from a panel of A/E executives whose firms embrace change and see their companies thrive.

Saturday, October 25, 2014

7am-8:15am Tax Incentives and How They Can Revitalize Your Firm
Michael Siegel, alliantrgoup
Recent legislative changes now allow engineering firms to claim powerful cash incentives. Learn how to qualify for government tax credits and deductions that help firms expand and recharge their practice.

Engineer-Led Design Build — Simple, Safe and Profitable
Mark Friedlander, Schiff Hardin
Learn how to contract directly with owner-primes of a design-build team. Discuss how a design-build project typically proceeds, and the business advantages that result from an engineer-led team.
8:30am-9:45am Characteristics of Higher Performing Design Firms
Tim Corbett, SmartRisk
Design firms today must adopt a business strategy to counter client expectations of risk and price.

Stamping & Sealing Across Borders — Standard, Procedures, Challenges
David Ericksen, Severson & Werson
Professional stamping practices vary widely from firm to firm and state to state. Understand the appropriate standards and procedures to apply in a multiple party project stamped by a single professional. Correctly handling multi-state project challenges has important implications for client relationships and potential liability.
10am-11:15am Marketing and Business Development for Design-Build Projects
G. Stuart Matthis, STV
Gain insight into dealing with project tracking, team formulation, SOQ development, alternative concepts/value engineering, and technical-cost proposal development including the critical interface between contractor (design-builder) and engineer.

Managing Community relations for Project Success
Alex Cousins, HDR Engineering
Managing the community relations of new infrastructure often carries the greatest risk, and yet is easily overlooked or underestimated. Learn how to "right size" public involvement so you know exactly when and how to engage the community.