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AEI Virtual Sessions at ASCE VTech Conference

Thursday, August 27, 2020

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Don't miss AEI's VTech program featuring a 2 hour presentation on The Future of the AEC Industry: Imagining New Possibilities and technical presentations from the 2020 AEI Professional Project Awards winners .

Advance your knowledge in your specialty and gain insights from innovations in multi-disciplinary engineering topics. Choose from over 100 sessions and earn up to 20 PDHs from the comfort of your home or office.

Interact with top technical global leaders on an innovative platform, participate in real-time interactive chat and network with your peers in the Virtual Lounge.

AEI's Program

Thursday, September 17, 2020 - Workshop

3:00 PM - 5:00 PM
The Future of the AEC Industry: Imagining New Possibilities

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David J. Odeh, SE, PE, F.SEI, F.ASCE, SECB
Odeh Engineers, Inc.

David J. Odeh is a structural engineer with over 20 years of experience in the design of buildings, with projects throughout the United States. His firm, Odeh Engineers, Inc., is a leading structural consultant with special expertise in digital design tools. David is a past president of SEI (2015-16), and past chair of the SEI Futures Fund (2018). He currently serves as Society Director on ASCE's Board of Direction (2018-21).

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Jessica Fitzwilson, LEED AP BD+C
Ohio Regional Manager for Turner Logistics & Global Sourcing Solutions, an entity within Turner Construction
Turner Construction Company

Jessica has been with Turner for 13 years working in various roles throughout her career including engineer, superintendent, project manager, cost analyst, and business development manager.  She is from Cincinnati and has BS in Construction Management from Northern Kentucky University.   Turner is the nation's top construction management firm with 46 offices across the country and an international division.

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Wil V. Srubar III, PhD, A.M.ASCE
Associate Professor
University of Colorado Boulder

Dr. Wil Srubar is an assistant professor of architectural engineering and materials science at the University of Colorado Boulder, where he leads the Living Materials Laboratory. Dr. Srubar holds a PhD from Stanford University, as well as BS and MS degrees from Texas A&M University and the University of Texas at Austin, respectively. His academic research integrates synthetic biology, polymer science, and cement chemistry to create biomimetic and living material technologies for the built environment. He has received >$6M in sponsored research funding through the US National Science Foundation, ARPA-E, and DARPA's Biological Technologies Office. He has authored >70 technical journal articles, book chapters, and conference proceedings. His work has been highlighted in The New York Times, The Conversation, and The Huffington Post. He is a co-founder and current co-chairman of the Embodied Carbon Network and is actively involved in the American Concrete Institute (ACI), the American Ceramic Society's Cements Division, and ASCE's Architectural Engineering Institute. 

Friday, September 18, 2020 - Sessions 

11:20 AM - 11:35 AM

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High Performance Buildings: Building the Future
Opening Remarks by AEI Past President 
Amy Hackney, PE, LEED AP BD+C
Senior Principal
Simspon Gumpertz & Heger (SGH) 

Amy is a Senior Principal at Simpson Gumpertz & Heger and the head of SGH's Building Technology division in Southern California.  She has more than fifteen years of building envelope engineering experience.  Her primary emphasis is on new design building envelope consultation; however, her experience also includes investigating existing building envelopes and waterproofing systems and repair and rehabilitation design of those components.  Her work addresses issues related to the integrity of glazing assemblies, opaque exterior walls, roofs, plaza decks and podiums, terraces and balconies, and below-grade systems. She has experience working with architects, contractors, and owners on a wide range of structures, including high-rise residential, hospitality, higher education, healthcare facilities, museums, stadiums, and commercial and mixed-use projects..  Amy is the Past-President of and on the Board of Governors for the Architectural Engineering Institute of the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE).

11:35 AM - 12:05 PM
Arizona State University's Net Zero Energy Building (NZEB) Student Pavilion
Brought to you by HGA

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Chrysanthi Stockwell, LC, IALD, LEED AP
Senior Associate

Chrysanthi holds a Masters Degree is Architectural Engineering and brings 13 years of experience as an architectural lighting designer.  Bridging together both the creative and technical sides of lighting, her concepts enhance and reinforce the architectural form.  Chrysanthi nurtures the relationships and needs of the entire design team, making sure a quality human experience is at the forefront of decision making. She was recognized as 40 under 40 in Lighting - International Class of 2018.   She is an active member on both national and local levels of the Illuminating Engineering Society of North America (IES) and a Professional Member of the International Association of Lighting Designers (IALD).

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Leighton Deer, PE, HBDP, LEED AP BD+C
Vice President, Mechanical Engineering

Leighton is an architectural engineer with nearly 20 years of experience designing high-performance mechanical systems for arts centers, cultural institutions, and education clients. Leighton is passionate about the art and science of great building design and uses that passion to create engineered systems that form high-performance, technically-sound, maintainable and sustainable building facilities. Leighton is a past-president of the MN Chapter of ASHRAE, a 2020 recipient of ASHRAE's First Place Technology Award, and a licensed mechanical engineer.

12:05 PM - 12:30 PM
Concrete Walls, Live Glassblowing, and Ductwork: The Challenges of Designing Building Systems for the Corning Museum of Glass
Brought to you by Altieri

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Michael Freliech, P.E.  

Michael Freliech, a graduate of Syracuse University, has over 30 years' experience supporting client vision and successfully meeting high profile design challenges. He specializes in the design of special systems serving highly-controlled, architecturally complex environments. Mike advances Altieri's industry leadership in the integration and control of advanced MEP systems with many defining projects including the Corning Museum of Glass Contemporary Art + Design Wing and the 10-year renovation project at the Yale University Art Gallery. He currently leads Altieri's work on the master plan for Boston Public Library's McKim Building and transformation of the Lewis International Law Center at Harvard Law School.

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Kristen Butts, PE, LEED® AP   
Associate Principal

Kristen Butts joined Altieri in 2006 after graduating from Penn State with degrees in Architectural Engineering. She has worked on many of the firm's complex museum and higher education projects, addressing design challenges with innovative solutions. Asked recently what project(s) she has most enjoyed working on, Kristen highlighted Corning Museum of Glass, North Carolina Museum of Art, Yale University Art Gallery, Springfield Technical Community College because each provided a challenge in terms of architectural integration. "We had to find creative solutions to support the architecture and the architect's vision. There is no one way to do it."

12:30 PM - 12:55 PM
Creating Land: Converting Challenges into Opportunities -  One Manhattan West
Brought to you by Skidmore Ownings & Merrill (SOM)

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Charles Besjak, SE, PE, FAIA, LEED® 
Director of Structural Engineering

Charles Besjak is the Director in charge of Structural Engineering for Skidmore, Owings & Merrill, New York. His portfolio of over 120 structures includes some of SOM's tallest and most complex building projects. His sophisticated structural solutions accommodate dynamic environmental forces such as seismic, wind, and water- often in some of the world's most challenging climates. A Registered Architect and both a licensed Structural Engineer and Professional Engineer, he fosters a multidisciplinary design approach to create singular architectural icons with structural systems that are seamlessly integrated, efficient, innovative, and sublimely elegant. Besjak is an active member of several international professional organizations, including being elevated to Fellow for American Institute of Architects.

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Preetam Biswas, PE
Director of Structural Engineering


Preetam Biswas is Director of Structural Engineering at the New York office of Skidmore, Owings & Merrill (SOM). Preetam is known for designing innovative, yet simple and constructible structural systems for tall and super-tall towers, as well as for large and small scale structures with complex geometries. His work on long-span structures such as airports, convention centers, and stadiums, in addition to that on specialty structures such as cable wall systems, has been recognized with several awards and honorary programs. The current Chair of ASCE's Task Committee for Design and Performance of Tall Buildings for Wind, Preetam is also a member in many notable industry organizations.

1:10 PM - 1:35 PM
Reinventing the Skyscraper: Tianjin CTF Finance Center
Brought to you by Skidmore Ownings & Merrill (SOM) 

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Ronald B. Johnson, SE, PE, FAIA, LEED®
Associate Director 

Ronald B. Johnson is a Structural Engineering Associate Director in the Chicago office of Skidmore, Owings & Merrill, LLP.  Johnson has led the Structural Engineering team in the design of over 14 major projects in China and has a been involved in more than 30 other projects.  Notable projects include; the recently completed Tianjin CTF Finance Center, Shenzhen Rural Commercial Bank Headquarters, Guangzhou Kingold New Town, Shanghai White Magnolia Tower, Shanghai Marriott, Ningbo Bank of China Headquarters and the Hong Kong Convention Center. Johnson actively lectures and is a member of various institutions, such as the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE), Structural Engineers Association of Illinois (SEAOI), and the American Institute of Steel Construction (AISC).

1:35 PM - 2:00 PM
Science on Display: The University of Michigan Biological Sciences Building
Brought to you by SmithGroup 

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Xin Zong, PE


As a principal and senior structural engineer at SmithGroup Inc., Xin applies her structural analysis and design expertise on large-scale projects including health care facilities, higher education buildings, and science and technology laboratories. She is focused in the SmithGroup Detroit office, but also collaborates and provides structural support to other SmithGroup offices such as Boston, Washington DC, San Francisco, and the international office in China.

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Talese Yensch, PE LEED AP

Mechanical Engineer

Talese Yensch joined SmithGroup's mechanical engineering department in 2011 bringing with her, experience in the planning, design, construction documentation, and construction follow-up of mechanical systems.  Her responsibilities include analyzing building energy performance through simulation models, developing heating and cooling load calculations, as well as planning, designing and documenting HVAC, plumbing, and specialty systems using AutoCAD and REVIT.

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Patrick MacBride, LC
Lighting Designer

Patrick MacBride is an experienced lighting designer at SmithGroup in Detroit, Michigan. He discovered his passion for light and design excellence while obtaining his master's degree in architectural engineering at The University of Nebraska. As a Lighting Certified Professional, he takes pride in designing tailored lighting solutions to enrich the user's experience of architecture and light. In addition to his primary workplace responsibilities, Patrick has been recognized for his design achievements by various professional organizations and publications including the Illuminating Engineering Society, the Architectural Engineering Institute, and arc magazine.

2:00 PM - 2:20 PM
High Performance Buildings: Building The Future
Closing Panel Session with the AEI V-Tech presenters, Moderated by AEI Past President 
Amy Hackney, P.E., LEED AP BD+C
Simspon Gumpertz & Heger (SGH)

Registration rates:

  • Member: $245
  • Non-Member: $495
  • Student Member: $85

Students pay one low registration for the ASCE VTech Conference and the ASCE 2020 Convention !

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