The Early Years – 1989 and the 1990s
Palmerton & Parrish, Inc. (PPI) was founded as an Engineering Corporation in the State of Missouri in January 1989 by Mr. Fred Palmerton, P.E., President, and Mr. Brad Parrish, P.E., Vice President. PPI established satellite Offices in Branson, Missouri and Joplin, Missouri in 1990 and 1991, respectively. Mr. Mike Andress was PPI’s third employee in 1989, and managed PPI’s Branson’s office from 1990 till his retirement at the end of 2016.
Mr. Ron Abbiatti, R.G., joined PPI in early 1990 and spent the majority of his career with PPI as the Joplin Office Manager till his retirement in 2008. Mr. Palmerton, Mr. Parrish, Mr. Andress, and Mr. Abbiatti comprised PPI’s original Board of Directors. Mr. Mike Foley joined PPI in 1991, and has spent his career with PPI in the Construction Materials Testing Department.
The Second Decade – the 2000s
PPI’s business grew steadily during the 1990s, and by 2000, PPI’s staff had grown to over 40 full-time employees. Many key staff members joined PPI in the 2000s, including Mr. Shane Rader, P.E., Ms. Rachel Goeke, P.E., Mr. Brandon Parrish, P.E., and Mr. Don Nowack, P.E., R.G.
In 2004, Mr. Brad Parrish assumed the role of Company President and Mr. Palmerton became Vice President, as was planned at the time of the Company’s original founding.
PPI made a strategic decision to expand the Subsurface Drilling Department during the 2000s, purchasing our first two track-mounted CME 55s. PPI’s Subsurface Drilling Department stayed busy during the 2000s, and the decade concluded with an IDIQ Contract Award for Subsurface Drilling Services from the St. Louis District USACE in 2009.
PPI completed several keynote Projects in the 2000s, including the Branson Landing Development, and Downstream Casino in Quapaw, Oklahoma. In 2009, PPI opened a satellite Office in Tulsa, Oklahoma in response to requests from Clients to extend our services from Northeast Oklahoma further into the State.
Decade Three – 2009 to 2018
PPI was well-positioned when the recession affected the Construction Industry from 2010 to 2012. With a large volume of subsurface drilling work, PPI transitioned many of our Construction Materials Technicians to work in the Subsurface Drilling Department during the recession, and continued to add resources to our drilling fleet with the addition of an ATV-mounted 2010 CME 550X.
PPI emerged from the recession with no layoffs, and all of our long-time staff and accumulated expertise in tact. PPI hit the ground running as the Construction Industry turned around in 2013 and 2014.
In January 2013, Brandon Parrish, P.E., Brad’s son, assumed the role of Vice President. Brandon grew up working in the business, and is a 2005 and 2006 graduate of the University of Missouri, with a Bachelor and Master of Science in Civil Engineering. His Master’s Thesis was entitled “Geotextile Wrap-Face Wall Using Marginal Backfill”.
Mr. Palmerton, P.E. transitioned to part-time employment during 2013 as the Company prepared for a new chapter in Company Ownership and Management Structure. Mr. Palmerton remains engaged in the Springfield Community, and is still available as a resource to PPI and our Clients.
PPI entered a new chapter of Management in 2014 when a group of five (5) new Board Members were invited to become Shareholders of the Company: Mr. Brandon Parrish, P.E., Ms. Rachel Goeke, P.E., Mr. Shane Rader, P.E., Mr. Don Nowack, P.E., R.G., and Mr. Mike Foley. A new Board of Directors was created, including the new shareholders, President Mr. Brad Parrish, P.E., and long-time shareholder Mr. Mike Andress [Management].
Since 2014, PPI has continued to grow and reinvest in our Company’s resources to better serve our Clients. Notable additions to PPI’s drilling and subsurface investigation capabilities include: new 2014 CME 55 and 2015 CME 55 track-mounted drill rigs; a 2008 CME 55LC track-mounted drill rig, which allows PPI to drill, sample soil, and core rock with as little as 8 feet of overhead clearance; a new portable Big Beaver auger drill that can fit through a doorway and drill with as little as 14 feet overhead clearance; a vacuum excavation trailer; and a new, ChemGrout Grout Plant with a 44 gallon per minute (GPM) flow rate.
PPI’s Geophysics Department was established in 2014, and has grown to encompass geophysical survey capabilities including multi-channel analysis of surface waves (MASW), seismic refraction microtremor (ReMi), and ground penetrating radar (GPR). Geophysical studies complement PPI’s Subsurface Drilling, Laboratory Testing, and Geotechnical Engineering Departments by providing additional tools for subsurface data collection and analysis.
PPI CELEBRATES 30 YEARS IN 2019
PPI celebrated 30 years in business on January 30, 2019, and has spent the early part of 2019 reinvesting in the Company’s resources to better serve our Clients. In early 2019, PPI’s staff was around 60 employees, including numerous Construction Materials Testing Technicians in Tulsa, Joplin, and Branson; about 15 Construction Materials Testing Staff based in Springfield, 15 full-time Drilling Staff, and 10 Engineers and Geologists. PPI has purchased two (2) new track-mounted drill rigs in early 2019, a 2019 Diedrich D50 and a 2019 CME 55-300, and has expanded our capabilities with drone services, additional Ground Penetrating Radar (GPR) capabilities, and additional staff training in Non-Destructive Testing (NDT) of structural steel. PPI is grateful for 30 years in business, and is busy laying the groundwork for the next 30.
THANKS TO FRED AND MIKE!
Mr. Fred Palmerton, P.E.
Founding President, Retired 2013, Still Going Strong
Throughout his career at PPI, Mr. Palmerton helped establish the Company’s reputation as a leader in Geotechnical Engineering and Construction Materials, with particular expertise in Concrete and Asphalt Pavement, Sinkhole Remediation, Drilled Pier Design and Construction, and other fields.
Mr. Palmerton is a lifetime steward of his profession and his community. He has been actively involved with numerous professional organizations, including the National Society of Professional Engineers (NSPE); Missouri Society of Professional Engineers (MSPE); Professional Engineers in Private Practice (PEPP); American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE); American Council of Engineering Companies (ACEC); American Concrete Institute (ACI); and Missouri Asphalt Producers Association (MAPA).
Mr. Palmerton served as State MSPE/PEPP Chairman in 1987-1988, State MSPE President in 1997-1998, and National NSPE/PEPP Chairman in 2004-2005. In 1992, he was awarded the NSPE/PEPP National Merit Award for Contribution to Private Practice, and in 2002 he received the NSPE/PEPP Outstanding Service Award. He is an NSPE Fellow and a member of the MSPE Hall of Fame.
Mr. Palmerton has been heavily involved in the evolution of Storm Water Regulation at the City of Springfield. In his spare time, Mr. Palmerton is an active member of the congregation at Hillcrest Presbyterian Church in Springfield, and devotes many hours of service to the Council of Churches of the Ozarks and other community causes. Fred celebrated 40 years of marriage with his wife RaeJean in 2017, and is enjoying his retirement.
Mr. Mike Andress
Former Branson Office Manager, Retired 2016, Still Going Strong
Mr. Mike Andress joined PPI in 1989 as PPI’s third employee. Mr. Andress worked in nearly every aspect of the Company during the early years, and assumed the role of Branson Office Manager in 1990. Mike moved his family to Branson in 1994 and remained PPI’s Branson Office Manager until his retirement in 2016.
Mr. Andress is a graduate of Webb City High School and served three years in the United States Army from 1970 to 1973, when he was honorably discharged with the rank of Sargent, SP-5.
As PPI’s Branson Office Manager, Mr. Andress guided the Company through multiple “Branson Booms”, ramping up to 10 employees working in the Branson Office at one point in the early 1990s. Mr. Andress has held certifications from MoDOT and AHTD for soil, aggregate, concrete, and asphalt, and Level 1 and 2 certification for Ultrasonic Testing. Mr. Andress has extensive work experience with site development and solving geotechnical challenges in southwest Missouri, particularly in Taney and Stone Counties.