ENR Southwest's 2013 Top 20 Under 40 Lead the Way to Southwest's Construction Future
Bright future in store for solar power expert
38, Regional Energy Group Manager
Burns & McDonnell
As a business unit manager for Burns & McDonnell's growing solar energy practice, Matt Brinkman is set up for a bright future in the power sector. During his six years in this role, Brinkman has become the firm's leading expert in consulting with utilities and other developers of solar energy projects. After joining Burns & McDonnell in 1997, Brinkman was initially focused on traditional power generation projects. In 2004 he sought to expand beyond the firm's core services by pursuing opportunities in the emerging solar industry. Shortly afterward, he landed his first solar project as owner's engineer for Sempra Energy's 10-MW El Dorado Solar PV project. Recently, his team conducted a due diligence review for MidAmerican Energy, which was considering a $2-billion investment in a solar energy project. Based partly on the report, MidAmerican Energy has moved forward with its investment.
Mentors younger engineers while designing signature projects
32, Structural Engineer/Project Manager
Since joining PK Associates upon graduating from the Milwaukee School of Engineering in 2003, Christa Chau has made a big impact on Arizona's built environment. Her projects have included the $110-million Banner Estrella Medical Center Expansion, the net-zero energy use DPR Construction Phoenix Office and the 1.1-million-sq-ft CityScape high-rise project in Phoenix.
Achieving associate status in just six years with the firm, Chau excels at managing teams, whether internally or with clients. She currently manages and mentors several younger structural designers at her firm while maintaining a healthy work-life balance with her husband and 1-year-old son. Chau contributes to the community as an active member of PK Associates' Canstruction and Rebuilding Together teams.
Well-rounded construction leader, teacher and volunteer
38, Senior Portfolio Manager
As a portfolio manager for retired public safety personnel, Paul Corens provides investment capital to real estate and engineering projects in the Southwest. During his 20 years in Arizona, he has helped shape infrastructure, land planning, building design and mining projects. His current role is managing a $1.2-billion portfolio of investments in Europe, Africa and Asia. Corens helps train the next generation as an adjunct faculty member or guest lecturer at several schools, including Thunderbird School of Global Management and Arizona State University. Last year he was awarded a fellowship with the Arizona Flinn-Brown Civic Leadership Institute to promulgate infrastructure, construction and utility-related policy. Corens volunteers his time with law enforcement support groups, as a board member of the Arizona Hemophilia Society and with the Urban Land Institute.
Hired to start up engineering firm's first New Mexico office
36, New Mexico Operations Manager
T.Y. Lin Intl.
Hired to start up T.Y. Lin's Albuquerque office three years ago, Eric Froberg became one of the engineering firm's youngest operations managers. Adept at value engineering while maintaining quality, he strives to save clients money while exceeding their expectations. Due to his success in this new marketplace, Froberg has been able to mentor other young engineers and CAD technicians while creating new career opportunities. He also fosters partnerships between designers and public agencies through involvement in the ACEC Government Affairs Committee and the Professional Technical Advisory Board.