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Meet the Presto Geosystems Team: Get to Know Bryan

Bryan and NaomiHow long have you been with Presto Geosystems?

Time flies when you are having fun! I have been with Presto Geosystems going on 14 years. In that time, I got to work with some really great people and enjoyed speaking with Gary Bach on how geocells were invented back in the late 70s and early 80s.

Can you tell us a bit about your background?

I grew up in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan and enjoyed doing all things outdoors. My father was an Olympic ski jumper, so I had no choice but to strap on a pair of skis and follow in his footsteps. I became pretty good and was in three junior Olympics before a bad fall ended that part of my life. I grew up before video games, so we were always outside playing football, baseball or just riding bikes.

After a year at Michigan State University, I attended college at Michigan Tech University in Houghton, MI and graduated with a degree in Environmental Engineering. After graduation, I moved to Green Bay, WI, and worked for Foth & Van Dyke and then Robert E. Lee engineering consulting firms before joining Presto Geosystems.

What attracted you to the world of engineering and geosynthetics?

I was lucky enough to land a wonderful job out of college at Foth & Van Dyke in Green Bay, WI. Foth was a growing consulting firm at the time and the staff was always at the leading edge of technologies. When I started in consulting, geosynthetics were just becoming an option for roadway and earth retention projects. I got to see early on how engineers included geosynthetics in their projects and how the approval agencies accepted them. I guess I’m really showing my age…

What does your job entail? Can you take us through a day in the life as the Chief?

The best part of my job is that every day is different and it seems there are no “typical” days. Our products can solve so many soil stabilization problems that I am blessed to work with engineers all over the world on their challenging projects. It is rewarding to walk away from my computer at the end of the day knowing that the Geosystems Team and our worldwide distribution network work together to make a difference.

What do you like most about your job and/or what do you like most about this industry?

The people and relationship building through the years has been enjoyable. Our industry really works closely to ensure successful geosynthetic projects. I enjoy working on the AREMA, ASTM, and ISO committees and the discussions with the industry experts.

What is the most challenging part of your job?

How do you turn it off? When I first started consulting 35 years ago, we didn’t have the technology we have today. We didn’t even have AutoCAD or personal computers at the time! Everything was done by hand, and I think we understood the calculations better. When you left work, it allowed you to unwind. Today, it seem it is 24/7, especially with the advancements in technology. It can be a challenge to turn it off.

What do you enjoy doing when you aren’t out helping solve the world’s soil stabilization and erosion challenges?

My wife and I stay pretty active, especially in the summers. We live on a golf course, and you will always find us out playing or enjoying a cocktail on the 19th hole! Family is a big part of our life. We are lucky to have four wonderful kids who have moved out of the house and are employed! They have given us three beautiful grandchildren (one more on the way in December) that we love to spend time with and spoil which is what grandparents are supposed to do.

What is your favorite place in the world to visit?

I have been lucky to have traveled all over the world for leisure and work. A few of my favorites include Austria, Switzerland, Australia, and Banff in Canada. If had to pick one it would have to be Punta Cana since my wife and I have the best of times when we visit. We have so many great memories there. We both have stressful jobs, so it is nice to get away, relax on the beach, enjoy some cocktails and let someone else do the cooking.

If you could meet anyone, living or dead, who would you meet?

This is an easy one but hard to decide which person. I am a huge old western movie fan. It is to the point that if I am watching tv and scrolling through the channels and come across one, my wife just gets up and goes to another tv. I would have to pick my top 20, throw them in a hat, and just pick one and would be fine.

What would you name the autobiography of your life?

Never a Dull Moment.