“I’m a perfect example of why engineers come to Dunham and stay: You can see your path. I started as an intern, was well trained and mentored, rose the ranks from associate to partner, and now I mentor younger engineers.”

  1. Influences

    “I grew up on a hobby farm in Hutchinson, Minnesota. My father taught audio technology, so he had some electrical knowledge. But what really drew me toward engineering was working with my hands at a young age. We would put an addition on the house, build a new shed—one time my father and I tore apart the kitchen and built new cabinets from scratch. What I got from that was the satisfaction of seeing something go from design to construction to use. I’ve also always enjoyed math, and a key moment for me was taking a CAD class in high school. My drafting teacher saw what I was doing, recommended that I apply myself to mechanical engineering as a career, and that was it.”

  2. Culture

    “The culture at Dunham is one of the big reasons I’ve stayed here. I could have gone other places out of college—some of them even offered to pay me more. But the feel at Dunham is different. I knew if I came here, I would learn more and grow faster. You have a variety of people with different knowledge sets, so if you’re working on a project, you can be sure there’s someone who’s done something similar and is eager to help. I’ll never forget that when I started here, I was teamed on a project with someone who always took the time to tell me not just the what, but the why. He could show you how to draw a 10x10 duct, but he would also take the time to say, ‘Here’s why it’s a 10x10 duct.’ That sounds like a small thing, but it’s huge.”

  1. Challenges

    “What gets me up in the morning is being able to work with my team in the education business unit. There’s nothing better than working with great people, collaborating on challenging projects and finding the right solutions together. It’s most satisfying to see a project you’ve worked on for months or years finally go into operation, but there are also those personal moments. I had a renovation project a few years ago that was projected to go over budget due to adding an extra floor just to house mechanical equipment. We sat in a room—architect, engineers, building owner, cost estimator—all at a standstill on how to balance needs and budget. I realized we needed an outside-the-box solution in order move forward. I had the idea of cutting out a floor to connect some crawl space with the underutilized space above it in order to house the mechanical equipment. I knew that some people might think it was crazy, but I also knew it could also save the project. So I threw it out there and guess what? It worked and allowed the project to go forward. That type of outside-the-box thinking is very rewarding—especially because it’s so encouraged at Dunham.”

  2. History

    “I’ve been at Dunham my entire career, starting when I interned while I was still a student at the School of Mines in Rapid City, South Dakota. It’s funny, Dunham has always had at least one engineer from the School of Mines, starting with the founders George and Nancy Dunham. They should give us a special badge.”