Thompson Engineering’s Stormwater Training Program Celebrates Milestone

Thompson Engineering has now trained more than 3,000 students in its stormwater pollution prevention program, a milestone that recognizes the program’s quality and importance. The Alabama Department of Environmental Management (ADEM)-certified, Qualified Credentialed Inspector (QCI) course provides the tools and techniques needed to prevent erosion and control sediment  on construction sites in Alabama.

“When stormwater issues are not addressed at construction sites, significant environmental damage can occur,” said Cindy Roton, Thompson Engineering Stormwater Training Coordinator. “Thompson’s team of instructors is committed to educating as many people as we can reach with the goal of preventing unnecessary pollution to our precious waterways.” Thompson has provided the ADEM-certified stormwater training programs in Alabama since 2005. Components of the class include the most current regulatory requirements, inspection strategies, and best management practices that can be used by the construction community to prevent the pollution of stormwater on active project sites. 

Thompson Engineering conducts more than 25 classroom training sessions annually at various locations throughout Alabama. Thompson also provides environmental training in Florida, Mississippi and Louisiana. Class registration is available here, or for more information, call 251-666-2443.

Posted on 09/24 • Permalink

Thompson Engineering Featured in Report on Coastal Restoration

Thompson Engineering is featured in an in-depth report released by The Nature Conservancy and Oxfam on the potential for economic and environmental recovery along the Gulf Coast. The report, Rebuilding Our Economy, Restoring our Environment: How the Emerging Restoration Economy Offers New and Expanded Opportunities for Gulf Coast Businesses and Communities, cites Thompson Engineering Senior Vice President Emery Baya on the importance of economic and environmental partnerships. “This report clearly shows the connection between the health of our Gulf Coast resources and our regional economy,” said Baya. “There’s a lot of work to be done to restore both, and this report outlines the importance and potential in funding programs targeting coastal restoration.”

The complete report from The Nature Conservancy and Oxfam is available to read online. Its release comes on the heels of a huge win for Gulf Coast recovery efforts. In early July, the RESTORE Act became law. It guarantees that 80 percent of the Clean Water Act fines collected from BP and other responsible parties are returned to the Gulf states to fund environmental and economic restoration development.

Thompson Engineering has been actively involved for several years in numerous environmental restoration and protection projects in the areas we serve, such as the ASPA Choctaw Point Wetlands Mitigation and the D’Olive Watershed Management Plan.  Thompson Engineering is also a partner in an initiative called 100-1000: Restore Coastal Alabama. The program aims to build 100 miles of oyster breakwater reef, which will promote the development of 1,000+ acres of marsh and seagrass habitats.

Posted on 08/27 • Permalink

Thompson Engineering Awards 2012 Foundation Scholarship


Thompson Engineering recently awarded its 2012 Thompson Foundation scholarship to Mobile, Alabama high school graduate Anna Griffin. Griffin, who graduated from Davidson High School in 2012 with a 5.074 weighted GPA, an ACT score of 35 and an impressive list of honors and activities, begins her studies in engineering at Yale University in the fall of 2012. “Thompson created a scholarship program to encourage and assist local students who are interested in engineering specialties,” said Anne Hirschfeldt, Chair of the Thompson Scholarship Committee. “We’re looking forward to following Anna in her engineering education and future career.” 

Griffin is a graduate of Davidson High School’s Engineering Pathways Integrated Curriculum (EPIC) program, and took particular interest in the school’s robotics program. But she says the social aspect of engineering is the motivation for her future goals. “If there is anything I want to accomplish as an engineer, it is to use innovative design and technology to help underdeveloped and developing communities and also help developed nations become more environmentally conscious leaders.”

In her scholarship application essay, Griffin said her mom, a teacher with the Mobile County School System, sparked her interest in engineering in the kitchen. “My mom used to make smiley faces out of cut vegetables, fruit or whatever my snack was for the day, and then tell me to rearrange the food and make something beautiful out of it. I loved to make patterns or create cheese towers. She probably did not realize that letting me play with my snack would build my interest in engineering.”

Thompson Engineering has awarded the Thompson Foundation scholarship since 2005. The $1,000 scholarship is renewable for up to four years. For more information on the scholarship program, click here

Posted on 08/21 • Permalink

A Fundraising Record at the 10th Annual Thompson Fishing Rodeo

The 10th Annual Thompson Fishing Rodeo was a big success, raising $7,950 for the Thompson Foundation. Nearly 250 people from Orlando to Australia registered to find fish and fun on Dauphin Island for one of Thompson Engineering’s most popular occasions.

Thank you to our generous sponsors for helping us put on a worthwhile event. Funds raised go directly to the Thompson Foundation, which supports efforts to improve the quality of life in the communities where Thompson employees live and work by investing in organizations, programs and activities that strengthen our social framework, education and sense of community.






Thank you 2012 Rodeo Sponsors!
10th Anniversary Sponsors

• Capitol Resources
• Walker – Maxwell
• Bacot-McCarty Foundation / M&M Bank
1st Place Sponsors
• Austal
• Brand Services
• Brasfield & Gorrie
• Enterprise Fleet Management
• Royal Engineering
2nd Place Sponsors
• BancorpSouth Insurance Services
• Blue Rents
• Engineering Design Technologies
• Hand Arendall
• Henry Seawell
• The Hollar Family
• Micro-Fab
• Morgan Keegan / Raymond James
• Personnel Management, Inc.
• Sherlock, Smith & Adams
• Southern Link Wireless
• Test America

Posted on 08/14 • Permalink

Thompson Named Fit-Friendly Company by AHA


Thompson Engineering has been named a 2012 Fit-Friendly Company by The American Heart Association (AHA). The Fit-Friendly Companies program recognizes employers who champion the health of their employees through education, training and other tools. The designation comes a little more than a year after the creation of Thompson Engineering’s TEAM Health, an employee-managed program that works to promote health and fitness company-wide. “Health and the cost of healthcare are important issues to Thompson employees, so we’re working very hard to provide information in a variety of ways to help our employees make smart decisions regarding diet, fitness and disease prevention, among other things,” said Anne Hirschfeldt, Human Resources. “The fit-friendly designation is a pat on the back for TEAM Health and all of our employees who are making commitments to healthier lifestyles.”

In its first year, TEAM Health introduced a variety of health topics to employees through various educational tactics, from health fairs to hand-outs. TEAM Health also launched a free 5K training plan for employees in advance of the company’s first employee-managed 5K. Other accomplishments of TEAM Health include:

  • No increase in health care premiums for 2012;
  • Added cost-saving mail order prescriptions to health care plan benefits;
  • Free skin cancer screenings, flu shots and biometric screenings;
  • And installation of Automated External Defibrillators (AEDs) in offices.
Posted on 08/07 • Permalink

Thompson Honored by American Council of Engineering Companies

Thompson Engineering has been awarded an American Council of Engineering Companies of Alabama (ACEC / Alabama) Honor Award for its design of the Katrina Cut Closure on Dauphin Island, Alabama. The Honor Award is earned by a project that demonstrates the “highest degree of innovative design, engineering merit and ingenuity.”

Katrina Cut was the name given to a 1.5-mile-long gap on the west end of Dauphin Island caused by Hurricane Katrina. The gap became a gateway for a potential environmental nightmare after the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill. The gap would have allowed water contaminated with oil to flow directly into Mississippi Sound.

In an emergency response effort, Thompson Engineering designed and constructed  a first-of-its-kind, 8,400-feet-long berm that took into account protection of multiple oil and gas pipelines, and tied the ends of the berm to the existing terrain to prevent erosion in future storm events. Additional work identified, located and protected nesting shorebirds, sea turtles and submerged aquatic vegetation beds.

The ACEC/Alabama Honor Award evaluated the project in several categories including:
• Application of new or existing techniques
• Future value to the engineering profession
• Social, economic and sustainable design considerations
• Complexity

Thompson Engineering was also awarded the ACEC / Alabama 2009 Engineering Excellence State Award for the design of the Gulf State Park Pier in Gulf Shores, Alabama.  

Posted on 08/06 • Permalink

Thompson Engineering Takes Alabama’s Top Safety Honor

For the third consecutive year, Thompson Engineering has been awarded the state’s top safety award, the Eagle Award, from the Associated Builders and Contractors of Alabama. The same group also awarded the 2011 Safety Director of the Year award to Thompson Engineering Safety Director Alex Napier.

“Thompson Engineering continues to earn safety honors because we refuse to compromise our safety values,” said President John Baker. “We recognize that our employees are our most valuable resource, and our commitment and approach to safety continually supports that message.” Baker added, “We have implemented an organizational safety framework that supports the implementation of behavioral safety concepts. All of our employees expect, and deserve, to work in a safe environment.”

ABC Alabama cites a corporate culture of safety as the main characteristic of its “Safest in the Industry” honorees. Thompson Engineering’s executive commitment to a safety and health management system and safety training for all employees contribute to that culture. “Our employees often engage in high-risk work, from underwater diving to roadside blasting to high-rise rappelling for inspections,” said Safety Director Alex Napier. “Our employees are trained for these situations, and every employee is empowered with the authority and responsibility to stop work in an unsafe environment. And that’s why our safety record is one we’re incredibly proud of.” 

Thompson Engineering also received the Mobile Section of the Alabama Associated General Contractors 2011 Construction Safety Excellence Award for Engineering and Construction Management for more than 650,000 of work. In Tennessee, Thompson Engineering earned the 2011 Platinum Level Safety Award from the Tennessee Road Builders Association for 65,080 hours of accident free work.

Click here to read more on Thompson Engineering's 2010 Safety accolades.



Posted on 05/07 • Permalink

Funky Monkey 5K Raises $10,000 for the Thompson Foundation

The Thompson Foundation committee and organizers of the Funky Monkey 5K & Fun Run extend a big thanks to sponsors, volunteers and participants of the Funky Monkey 5K & Fun Run. The event was a huge success for the Thompson Foundation, raising more than $10,000 in its first year!

The Funky Monkey was well-attended, with 487 registered runners and more than 30 volunteers. Runners ages one to 76 from five states signed up to participate. A great location and route at the University of South Alabama campus and a funky post-race party generated kudos from those who participated. Highlights included the building of Mobile’s Biggest Banana Split (measuring 39-feet) and the Funky Monkey Charity Challenge. The Charity Challenge awarded $1,000 to the charity with the most supporters registered for the race. This year’s recipient was the Kyser Miree Memorial Scholarship.

The Thompson Foundation also thanks CEO Jimmy Shumock, who spearheaded a "Beat the Boss" challenge. In support of Thompson's corporate health initiative, Shumock challenged every Thompson employee to train for the 5K and beat him to the finish line. "Encouraging employees to live healthier lives is an increasingly important component of our corporate culture," said Shumock. "And we'd love to see 'Beat the Boss' expand to include other groups next year." Shumock donated a total of $660 to the Foundation in honor of every employee who beat his Funky Monkey finish time as well as for those employees who volunteered at the race.

Look for 2013 Funky Monkey 5K & Fun Run information soon!

Posted on 04/02 • Permalink

Sustainability and Steel Highlight Design of ThyssenKrupp Complex

Watermark Design Group, a Mobile-based architectural firm, has completed the design of a new administrative complex that will soon house ThyssenKrupp Steel USA’s management team. The design of the 78,000-square-foot complex features Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) elements, and, of course, uses steel as the signature building material.

“Our design reflects ThyssenKrupp’s respect to the environment and its pride in the plant,” said Jim Clarke, lead architect for Watermark Design. “Exposed steel framing is incorporated into the design of the building’s conference rooms, and prominent patio areas encourage employees to meet outdoors.” The building’s most striking design element is a 440-foot segmented glass wall on the building’s east side. “ThyssenKrupp built one of the most technologically advanced steel processing facilities in the world,” said Clarke. “Our design allows almost every employee with an office in this new building to view it.” Some of the building’s green design features include a reclaimed water system for irrigation, natural lighting, lighting and thermal inhabitant controls and reflective and light colored materials for the minimization of heat island effects.


Watermark’s sister company, Thompson Engineering, provided geotechnical, structural, and civil engineering services for the new facility. “Because we have direct access to engineering consultants, we can facilitate a quick response – many times a 24-hour turnaround – on design changes, which is critical for a fast-track project,” said Clarke. Construction of the administration building is already underway; about 400 employees will begin working from the new complex in the fall of 2012. 

Posted on 11/02 • Permalink

Paul Klotz selected as SAME Fellow for 2010

The Society of American Military Engineers (SAME) recently selected retired U.S. Air Force Captain Paul Klotz along with other SAME members into its Academy of Fellows for 2010.  Since 1972, SAME has bestowed the designation of Fellow on SAME members who have rendered dedicated service to SAME and to military engineering.

As a member for more that 25 years Paul has distinguished himself with outstanding service to the Society of American Military Engineers.   During his association with SAME, he has been enthusiastically involved with the Mobile Post, serving 11 years as a Post Officer and over 25 years on the Board of Directors.  He has actively participated in Post monthly meetings, educational field trips, Board meetings, served on multiple planning committees.  Paul’s most noticeable contribution, however, has been his drive to build and support a sustainable scholarship and mentoring program within the Post.  Concurrently, he has pushed the Post to engage the University of South Alabama’s (USA) Engineering Department with the ultimate goal of establishing a Student Chapter at USA.  To this end, Paul was personally responsible for convincing the University to join as a Sustaining Member.

In a continuing career that spans more than 40 years Paul has been committed to making a difference in his profession and his community.  His professional career began in the United States Air Force as a Project Engineer while stationed at Eglin AFB in Florida.  Leaving the military he joined the public sector where he has established himself as a leader in the business community in industrial and environmental services.  However, it has been his experience in the AEC industry where Paul has made his greatest impacts.   A master at building relationships, Paul has established himself as a skilled and trusted voice at all level of local & state government.  These relationships have served as the platform for the equally impressive career in giving back to his community.  Here are a few examples of Paul’s efforts:

  • SAME Mobile Post Program Chairman 1985-1987
  • SAME Post Vice President 1985-1987 and 1994-1997
  • SAME Post President 1988 and 1997-1998
  • SAME Post Board Member 1985-2010University of South Alabama Industrial Advisory board 1994-2010
  • Speaker and author of professional publications since 1981 to the present time totaling over 50 presentations and papers on various scientific subjects.
  • Alabama School of Mathematics and Science (ASMS) Foundation Board 2001-2010
  • America's Junior Miss (AJM) Board of Directors 1978-2010
  • Mobile Association of the Blind Board 1978-2010, President 1983 & 1984

Congratulations to Paul Klotz.  Keep up the good work.

Posted on 11/29 • Permalink
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