Adding spark to big project design
39, Department Manager, Transmission & Distribution Engineering Group
Burns & McDonnell
McCreary's tenure at Burns & McDonnell has allowed him to work on utility projects from California to Saudi Arabia and everywhere in between. But his current position as department manager of the firm's transmission and distribution engineering group has distinguished him with his peers and bosses. In that role, he manages 75% of the firm's $7 billion in infrastructure improvement projects and a group of 30 full-time employees. McCreary's design leadership on the $678-million Greater Springfield Reliability Project to increase power reliability and efficiency in northern Connecticut for owner Northeast Utilities significantly reduced construction costs and enhanced the operator's ability to troubleshoot and monitor equipment. Burns & McDonnell relies on McCreary's innovative solutions for large, complex projects, says Jerry Fan, vice president. He also led the design of 50 remote end substations for Central Maine Power's energy reliability program, the largest construction program in state history, according to Fan. McCreary has mentored high school students interested in engineering and rallied the support of his peers for company fundraising drives.
Matthew D. Melrose
Envisioning unique structures
35, Senior Associate
Leslie E. Robertson Associates
New York City
As senior associate at Leslie E. Robertson Associates (LERA), Melrose has built credibility in working closely with architects to achieve their vision on unique and complex buildings while enhancing structural efficiency and integrity. He now serves as project director for the Columbia University Medical and Graduate Education Building, a 15-story post-tension superstructure that was recently cited for innovation by the Concrete Industry Board. Melrose has also worked as a design engineer for the Newseum and Freedom Forum in Washington, D.C., and project manager in construction of the National Museum of American Jewish History in Philadelphia. "At LERA, Matthew is heavily involved in internal initiatives that foster development and collaboration among staff," says firm partner Daniel Sesil. Melrose also is a recent chair of its associates group, which executes management priorities and creates an environment to "share creative energy and critical thinking," Sesil says. Melrose also was an adjunct associate professor of architecture at Columbia University from 2007 to 2011 and is still a guest critic for the program. In his free time, Melrose serves with both LERA's mentoring program as well as with the Morris Academy Mentors, a program that serves low-income students in the South Bronx. Melrose is also a deacon at his local church, where he hosts and leads a men's Bible study.
Building better health care
34, Senior Project Executive
Gilbane Building Co.
New York City
With a construction career that began before he was 18, Mulcahey has amassed extensive experience, particularly in the New York region's health care market. His recent projects as senior project executive at Gilbane Construction Co. include renovations at New York-Presbyterian and Winthrop University hospitals. On the latter, he reduced the project cost to $57 million from $69 million through cost variance tracking and value engineering efforts. Throughout his career, Mulcahey has completed 1.8 million sq ft of new construction and now leads a health care team of 45 in New York City. "Through his enthusiasm and commitment, he has developed other young builders into skilled heath care facility construction professionals," says William DeCamp, Gilbane vice president. Mulcahey also has shared his expertise in restoring the 175-year-old Rowayton, Conn., United Methodist Church, of which he is a trustee, and in building orphanages and providing small business loans for villages in Rwanda, Congo and Burundi in support of the World Relief organization.
Doing what it takes to make New York City subways better than ever
38, Senior Project Manager
New York City
Napoli's role as HNTB project manager for New York City Transit on recovery and resiliency design on more than eight miles of Superstorm Sandy-damaged subway tubes and related systems kept him in the office over numerous late nights and weekends, which might have been a good thing. It was a little crowded at home because 10 extended-family members had to move in with him after their Queens homes were flooded by the 2012 hurricane. Napoli and a team of 30 professionals inspected, assessed and prepared construction drawings for immediate repairs and performed feasibility studies for long-term flood mitigation, resulting in more than 700 drawings and three major projects now in construction. In addition to other project work, he also leads HNTB's New York area engineering internship program, which now has its highest-ever participation, and he volunteers his time mentoring students at Manhattan College, his alma mater. Napoli also has co-authored two articles for the American Society of Civil Engineers on the first portion of Manhattan's Second Avenue subway project, on which he participated. "Alex has demonstrated an outstanding leadership style, particularly leading by example," says Michael Sweeney, HNTB chairman of professional services. "He has shown tremendous perseverance and fortitude."
Using proactive risk management to improve construction
35, Risk Assessment Manager
White Plains, N.Y.
Ongkasuwan has spent much of his 13 years in the construction industry looking for ways to understand, manage and reduce risk—and making optimal use of technology to save cost and time. He has worked closely with the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey's project management office since 2013 to develop a life-cycle risk management system for its projects that is scalable to program level, and for which he conducted more than 40 risk assessments. Ongkasuwan has earned both project and risk management professional certifications from the Project Management Institute and is a key member of his firm's technical knowledge and innovation risk management team, guiding creation of standard and proactive practices throughout the company. He is a frequent contributor to industry events and has been invited to share his experience in construction management with engineering students and organizations in his native Thailand. As a civil engineering student there, Ongkasuwan served as president of two university-based groups that encouraged student peers to collect money, computers and other supplies from more than 100 companies for 600 schoolchildren in a rural village on the Myanmar border.
Early sustainability proponent pushes team to think critically
38, Vice Pres./Chief Plumbing Engineer
New York City
Advocacy for sustainable design and innovation on cutting-edge projects is just one of the reasons why Perise has become vice president and chief plumbing engineer at STV Inc. He now heads national operations in a 40-person plumbing and fire protection group and has led engineering on the MGM CityCenter project in Las Vegas and on New York City's Hearst headquarters building, the first LEED Platinum high-rise building in the U.S. and one of New York City's first commercial buildings to feature a stormwater reuse system for more than 250,000 gallons of water annually. Perise also led STV's Superstorm Sandy recovery work on a large subway maintenance facility and a psychiatric center in Staten Island. He also teaches extensively at STV's internal continuing education program and pushes team members "to think critically and outside the box." As a member of the city's Green Codes task force, Perise helped draft changes to building codes and regulations that were inhibiting sustainable building. According to STV, 47 of the task force's 111 recommendations have been enacted. Perise also advises the city on plumbing code issues through committee work for the New York chapter of the American Council of Engineering Companies. "Jim is technically strong and always thinking about the big picture," says Bruce Gombos, STV vice president.
Offering solid links to designers, builders and regulators on big jobs
39, First Vice President
Tishman Construction, an AECOM Company
Floral Park, N.Y.
Tishman Construction appears to have gained triple value in hiring Reid, who the firm says brought structural design expertise, regulatory agency experience and construction management prowess to some of the firm's most complex projects in and around Manhattan. Starting his career as principal engineer in the New York City Dept. of Building's forensic engineering unit, he obtained trial-by-fire experience in emergency response on such high-profile accidents as the 2007 Con Edison steam line explosion and the 2008 East 51st Street tower crane collapse. As a Tishman manager, Reid expanded his oversight capabilities on the firm's construction of the 978-ft-tall 4 World Trade Center tower and of the complex World Trade Center underground transportation hub, on which he was responsible for all below-grade structures and foundations beneath a 1,000-ft-long operating subway line. "Eric uses his experiences as a structural designer to bridge the gap between the design team and the contractors to identify problems and aggressively solve them," says Robert DeSanctis, Tishman executive vice president and residential sector leader. Reid now oversees work on 30 Park Place, set to be the tallest residential building in lower Manhattan.