We are thrilled to welcome Paul Schrooten to the DJ&A team, a diversely experienced landscape architect based in Anchorage, Alaska. Paul will be instrumental in supporting projects completed under DJ&A’s to recently awarded federal contracts with the National Park Service and U.S. Forest Service for engineering services across the state of Alaska. Paul recently retired after 28 years with the Department of the Interior, most recently working for the National Park Service in Anchorage, Alaska. He is a licensed and nationally certified landscape architect with experience in a wide range of recreational, transportation, and historic preservation projects. Having served as Alaska’s Regional Transportation Program Manager, Paul will enhance DJ&A’s ability to provide insightful expertise on NPS resource management and facility development. He has developed strong working relationships with his counterparts in other federal agencies and brings inherent knowledge and skills in working with a diverse range of clients on projects in Alaska and across the country. Paul earned his bachelor’s degree in landscape architecture from the University of Minnesota. Prior to joining DJ&A, Paul worked for Brauer and Associates (Eden Prairie, MN), CR3, Inc. (Simsbury, CT) and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Anchorage, AK). Paul’s project experience includes planning, design, and construction management of multimodal transportation facilities, institutional and corporate sites, visitor centers, campgrounds and trails, and natural and cultural resource protection efforts. He also helped to guide cutting edge collaborative long range transportation plans for the federal land management agencies in Alaska. Paul has lived in Anchorage since 1991 and enjoys spending time there with his wife, two children, and two grandchildren – running, hiking, biking, and camping in his free time. He recently hiked a portion of the 300-mile Superior Hiking Trail (June 2019) and is planning to hike a portion of the Appalachian Trail in 2020.
On Monday, June 10th, I was honored to join community and business leaders to officially break ground on DJ&A’s new headquarters in Missoula. Beyond creating a high-tech workspace for our rapidly growing team here in Western Montana, this project is set to be a catalyst for continued healthy economic growth in Missoula. This will be the first project constructed in Missoula that is funded through the Opportunity Zone program, a program created by the 2017 tax bill that create tax incentives to promote long-term improvement and development in designated zones across the country. To celebrate the occasion, employees from DJ&A, A&E, and Jackson Contracting Group, joined Mayor John Engen, Missoula Redevelopment Agency Director Ellen Buchanan, and Missoula Economic Partnership Director Gran Keir at the project site to share some words about their vision for future development in Missoula. “It’s gratifying to see a local company make bold, bright investments in their future and the future of Missoula. Our community’s planning, programs and public investment help give confidence to companies like DJ&A, who are investing in redeveloping the West Broadway corridor and, in doing so, creating jobs and opportunities and prosperity in our community. I’m grateful for the vision DJ&A is demonstrating and its commitment to the economic vitality of this great city.” – Missoula Mayor John Engen “This is an important project from our perspective because the City, MRA and a private party worked closely together, and we think these public-private partnerships are the future of smart growth here in our community. We think the kind of teams that came together for this project are exactly what we need more of.” – Grant Kier, Director of Missoula Economic Partnership We are incredibly thankful for the broad support this project has received from our community, including a commitment from the Missoula Redevelopment Agency to fund new sidewalks, boulevards, and street trees, within the public right-of-way. In addition, DJ&A and City of Missoula Public Works are collaborating to bring gravity sewer to the area. I couldn’t be more excited for what this project means for the future of DJ&A and continued healthy growth here in Missoula.
We are pleased to announce that Montana Department of Transportation (MDT) has awarded five, 3-year District Survey Term Contracts to DJ&A to provide survey and mapping services in support of transportation projects across the state on Montana. DJ&A has served MDT’s needs in our home state of Montana since 1993, and held a Missoula District Survey Term Contract from 2016-2019. The diverse projects completed under this contract have allowed DJ&A survey crews to demonstrate their expertise in implementing a wide variety of advanced technologies, including fully robotic total stations, Mobile LiDAR, UAV LiDAR and laser scanners. These technologies minimize the need for crews to enter the traveled way or step foot on dangerous terrain by allowing us to collect survey-grade data remotely and safely. DJ&A’s depth of experience with these technologies, along with conventional survey methods, allows us to identify the right combination of equipment that provides the best mix of safety, performance, and cost-effectiveness for MDT. Building upon the successful performance on the Missoula District contract, DJ&A will now provide services to all five of MDT’s Districts–Missoula, Butte, Great Falls, Glendive, and Billings–through 2021. Our crews look forward to continuing to leverage advanced technology and innovation to serve MDT across the state of Montana.
For the past four years, DJ&A employees have proudly supported CANdemonium, the Missoula Food Bank’s annual design/build competition and fundraiser to fight hunger in Missoula. As part of this creative competition, local businesses are paired up with architect and engineer firms to build giant structures from full cans of food, which are then donated to the food bank after the competition ends. In 2018, more than 17,500 pounds of food was donated after this competition, keeping our city’s food bank shelves stocked for several months. Under this year’s theme, Comic-CAN, DJ&A employees teamed up with long-term Candemonium partner Horizon Credit Union to design and build a giant PAC-Can and ghost based on the popular arcade game. This 5 1/2-foot structure is made up of 2,948 cans of corn, beans, and chicken broth, with a monetary value of approximately $2,800. Special thanks to our teammates Horizon Credit Union and our employee volunteers for their efforts in bringing Pac-CAN to life. If you’d like to join us in supporting the Missoula Food Bank, stop by Southgate Mall before April 11th and drop a donation in the bucket next to your favorite can structure. You can also vote by ‘liking’ the photo of your favorite structure on Facebook.
Since our company’s founding in 1973 by former U.S. Forest Service employees, we have continually served the needs of the Forest Service across the country. We are thrilled to announce the continuation of this partnership with our longest-standing client with the award of two new IDIQ contracts for multidisciplinary engineering services in Alaska, California, Oregon, and Washington. USFS, Region 5 Bridge Design and Load Rating IDIQ Contract DJ&A has held an ongoing engineering IDIQ contract the Forest Service Region 1 (Montana and Idaho) since 1989. The successful performance on this contract was instrumental in DJ&A recently securing a 5-year, $5M contract with Region 5 to provide structural and civil engineering support on Forest Service bridges throughout the state of California. This contract underscores DJ&A’s ability to provide value and effectively deliver projects to far-reaching locations, as DJ&A was the only out-of-state firm to be awarded this contract. USFS, Region 6, Full Service Design IDIQ Contract DJ&A was also recently awarded a 5-year, $15M contract to provide multidisciplinary engineering services to Region 6, covering forests in Washington, Oregon, and Alaska. DJ&A has continuously served this region since 2015, when DJ&A was first awarded an IDIQ contract with Region 6. In the last four years alone, DJ&A has completed more than 38 civil, structural, and wastewater projects across eight forests in this territory, including the following recent projects: We look forward to continuing to serve our nation’s National Forests across these regions.
As DJ&A continues to grow and expand the services we are able to provide our clients, we are thrilled to welcome three new employees to our team with expertise in geotechnical engineering, structural engineering, and land surveying. Jonathan (Jon) Pederson, PE – Project Manager & Senior Geotechnical Engineer (Missoula) Jon is a professional engineer with 15 years’ progressive experience in a wide range of civil, geotechnical, and construction management disciplines. Having served a diverse range of clients both domestically and internationally, Jon will expand DJ&A’s ability to provide geotechnical and environmental expertise on projects in Montana and beyond. Jon earned his bachelor’s degree in civil engineering from Montana State University before heading to California to obtain a master’s degree in civil engineering from University of California, Berkeley. Prior to joining DJ&A, Jon worked for NewFields in Missoula and a variety of other consulting firms across Montana and California. Jon’s engineering project experience includes planning, implementing, and managing geotechnical and geologic site investigations. He has also led multiple US EPA Brownfields site assessments and cleanups to promote property re-use and redevelopment. Jon loves Missoula and enjoys spending time here with his wife and two young children, running, mountain biking, skiing, fly fishing, and exploring the outdoors in his free time. Steve Long – Survey Technician (Vancouver) Steve brings 18 years of survey and mapping experience to our Vancouver office, where he will play an active role in growing our survey capabilities in the Pacific Northwest. Before joining DJ&A, Steve spent ten years as a Project Surveyor for Bonneville Power Administration responsible for field data collection, project oversight, and providing quality control checks on contractor project work. Steve’s past work experience also includes surveying for the Washington State Department of Transportation and Minister & Glaeser Surveying. Jacob (Jake) Roske, EIT – Design Engineer (Missoula) Jake has joined our Missoula office to support our growing structural engineering team. He is currently working on the design of DJ&A’s new office building in Missoula and is also contributing to the design and analysis of multiple bridge projects. Jake is a graduate of Montana State University where he obtained both a master’s degree in structural engineering and a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering. Prior to joining DJ&A, he worked for and held internships with engineering consulting firms in Bozeman and Missoula. His civil engineering project experience includes site-civil project management, surveying, and material testing in the Spanish Peaks and Yellowstone Club developments in Big Sky, Montana. His structural engineering project experience includes residential design, commercial design, industrial design, educational facilities design, and bridge design for counties and local agencies. Jake and his wife have two young sons, who keep them very busy and entertained. Besides speding time with them, he enjoys hunting, hiking, and anything else in the outdoors. Interested in joining our growing team? We are always interested in meeting talented people who share our commitment to excellent service. Check out our current job openings.
This week, I had the opportunity to present to the Missoula Organization of Realtors (MOR) about the benefits of developing land in Opportunity Zones. I’m particularly excited about this new community development program because of our company’s personal connection: DJ&A’s new headquarters will be the first Opportunity Zone project in Missoula. What are Opportunity Zones? The 2017 Tax Cuts and Job Act created the Opportunity Zone program to spur economic growth in distressed communities. Rather than relying on taxpayer dollars to fund the program, the program invites private investors to fund long-term improvement projects in low-income communities. As part of the legislation, state governors were to identify up to 25 Low-Income Community Census tracts to serve as Opportunity Zones. In Montana, where DJ&A’s headquarters are located, Governor Steve Bullock identified zones in both urban and rural communities, including one located in Missoula. What benefit can they provide? Opportunity Zones provide a significant federal tax incentive for taxpayers who reinvest unrealized capital gains into “Opportunity Funds,” which in turn support the long-term improvement of infrastructure and development in the designated zones. Improvements can include the development of affordable housing, infrastructure improvements, new construction, and workforce development. DJ&A’s New Office I’m hopeful that this program will spur healthy growth and economic development in areas of our country that sorely need it. We are proud to be pioneers in this effort by developing our new headquarters in the Missoula Opportunity Zone and hope that many others will follow suit. If you wish to learn more about the benefits of developing your project in an Opportunity Zone, please feel free to reach out to us.
It’s been an incredible year of growth and progress for DJ&A. As we celebrate 45 years of serving clients in Missoula and across the country. In 2018, our work brought us all across the United States, from remote islands of southeast Alaska to of hills of Kisatchie National Forest in Louisiana. We secured contracts that will allow us to expand the services we provide and break into new territories: National Park Service, Pacific West Region – A/E Full Service Design IDIQ National Park Service, Alaska Region – A/E Full Service Design IDIQ USFS, Region 5 – Bridge Design & Load Ratings IDIQ USFS, Region 8 – Bridge Load Ratings IDIQ USFS, Region 6 – A/E Full Service Design IDIQ for the Colville National Forest Region 6/10 – A/E Full Service Design IDIQ USACE Walla Walla District – Survey & Mapping IDIQ We hired eight additional full-time employees to strengthen our engineering, GIS, and surveying teams. We helped one of our clients (Bureau of Reclamation) win an ACEC-Montana Engineering Excellence Award for an emergency survey and mapping project completed at the height of the 2018 floods. We gave back to our community through volunteering, community engagement, and fundraising. And, we proudly launched a new logo and website to better reflect of our innovative spirit and our progressive vision for the future of our company. We want to extend a thank you to our clients and trusted partners who have made this a great year for DJ&A and our employees. We look forward to serving you in 2019!
Every December, our employees from Missoula and Vancouver come together to celebrate what we’ve accomplished over the last year at our annual Christmas party. One of our employee’s favorite traditions at the party is our charity raffle. DJ&A purchases some great prizes, our employees purchase tickets, and all of the money is donated to a nonprofit or deserving cause nominated by our employees. This year, right around the time we were selecting our raffle beneficiary, an article appeared in the Missoulian that inspired us to kick our fundraising up a notch. After learning that our local Salvation Army was $11,000 short of their fundraising goal to operate a much-needed Warming Center in Missoula, we decided to not only pledge our charity raffle funds to support the need, but also put out a challenge to other businesses and Missoula residents to join us. We pledged an initial donation of $5,000 from our raffle funds and set up a GoFundMe page to encourage others to help us meet the goal. The Missoulian generously helped us get the word out, and we watched as donations started to trickle in. On the night of our party, our employees blew through all previous charity raffle records and raised $6,770 for the shelter, beating our previous fundraising efforts by more than $1,000. And, our community stepped up to the challenge to donate additional funds, bringing the grand total to $12,614 in less than two weeks. We want to thank all who stepped up and generously donated to support this critical need for our neighbors in Missoula. You can read more about the warming center and DJ&A’s challenge here.
Today, I am thrilled to announce the launch of our new logo, website, and color palette. As we celebrate 45 years of serving clients across Montana and beyond, we thought it was the perfect time to reflect on all we have accomplished together and the vision we have for the future of DJ&A. Our logo change is not just a change in graphic design, but rather represents the continued advancement of the DJ&A brand, which has been a symbol of quality, innovation, and strong relationships since 1973. Our new logo is a better reflection of our innovative spirit and our progressive vision for the future of our company. However, we have not forgotten our history and milestones of the past, and that is why we have chosen to build upon our traditional blue and orange color palette. In addition to our new logo, we have also revamped our website to better serve our clients and to celebrate the work we’re accomplished together. In just the past five years, our clients have taken us to more than 29 states across the county. We are proud to have a new website that reflects the innovative projects and people who have shaped our company into who we are today. Starting today, you will see our new look everywhere – on our new website, on our engineering plans, and on our company vehicles out in the field. With our new look, we remain committed to providing our clients with the exceptional service and quality they have come to expect from DJ&A for the past 45 years.