Names in the News

ENGEO president Uri Eliahu has earned the American Society of Civil Engineers award for Civil Engineer of the Year in the Private Sector.

The award, handed out in late September, recognizes the professional achievements, leadership, management abilities, dedication and service of civil engineers working in the private sector.

“This award is a wonderful honor, and I believe that it truly belongs to the people at ENGEO who are dedicated to the culture we have created here for the highest levels of service to clients and to the public,” said Eliahu.

Founded in 1971, ENGEO is an employee-owned firm of geotechnical and civil engineers, geologists, hydrologists, environmental professionals and construction services technicians with offices in San Ramon, San Francisco, San Jose, Ripon, Rocklin and Santa Clarita.

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Los Angeles-based Psomas has hired John Reese as senior program manager to manage its growing portfolio of federal projects.

Reese spent more than 26 years with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, where he retired as commander and district engineer for the Sacramento District. He subsequently served for 10 years with an international A/E firm. As a senior program manager, Reese was responsible for the planning, design, construction and commissioning of more than $2 billion in services for the Army Corps of Engineers in Korea.

Reese holds a Master of Engineering Degree in Structures from the University of California, Berkeley, and a Bachelor of Science Degree from the U.S. Military Academy, West Point.

Psomas is one of the top-ranked consulting engineering firms in the nation. In addition to its Los Angeles office, Psomas has offices throughout California, Arizona and Utah.

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Rosendin Electric has named Sam Lamonica as chief information officer. He comes to Rosendin with more than 15 years of professional information systems experience.

Prior to joining Rosendin Electric, Lamonica worked for more than six years as CIO of Rudolph and Sletten, one of the largest general contractors on the west coast. He also has held executive information technology roles with other companies, including Phoenix Technologies, Macromedia, NorthPoint Communications and Network Equipment Technology. He holds a Bachelor’s degree in Information Systems from the University of San Francisco.

In his new role, Lamonica will help Rosendin Electric leverage new technologies, such as Building Information Modeling, and help Rosendin compete more effectively and achieve strategic operational objectives.

Rosendin Electricis a 100-percent employee-owned electrical engineering, power and communications provider. Headquartered in San Jose, it also operates branch offices in San Francisco, Los Angeles, Sacramento, Arizona, New Mexico, Oregon and Nevada.

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Steve Almas has joined the Galster Real Estate Group, bringing more than 15 years as a specialist in land development and construction to his new position.

At Galster, Almas will be assisting residential buyers and sellers throughout Sacramento, Placer and El Dorado.

Previously, Almas was co-founder of Cascade Construction, which specialized in entry-level home construction projects in the Phoenix area. He has been a licensed real estate professional for two years.

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Rob Hammon, a principal at Stockton-based ConSol, recently participated in the Asia-Pacific Partnership on Clean Development and Climate Net Zero Energy Home Workshop in Washington.

Experts from Australia, Canada, China, India, Japan, South Korea and the United States were invited to attend with the group objective of establishing a Net Zero Energy international industry community. The two-day workshop resulted in affirming the goals of developing practical, marketable methods to build zero-energy homes by 2020, and to make them commonplace by 2030.

They also developed some key action items critical to developing a roadmap to these goals as well as identifying and assigning initial tasks toward achieving the goals.

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David Ivester of Briscoe Ivester & Bazel LLP will discuss when and how to use Environmental Assessments or Environmental Impact Statements under the National Environmental Policy Act at CLE's 6th Annual NEPA Conference.

The conference is set for Jan. 21-22 at the Hotel Nikko in San Francisco. It will cover basic aspects of NEPA, as well as practical tips to make the permitting and environmental review process work. Recent legal developments, climate change, and renewable energy also will be discussed.

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Damian Taitano, a principal with KTGY Group, was invited to speak at the 21st Annual BIA of Southern California’s Building Industry Show in November.

This is Taitano’s third consecutive year speaking at the BIS. In past years, Taitano has covered topics from cost implications of new building codes to practical applications of sustainability. This year he was to speak on “Lessons from Past Tough Times Applied to Current Conditions,” an analysis of residential and mixed-use projects to demonstrate the successes and failures in planning, product and market program.

Responsible for conceptual planning through construction details on projects throughout California, his experience includes attached for sale and for rent properties, mixed-use development with a special focus on infill projects ranging from 10 to 60 units per acre.

KTGY Group provides comprehensive planning and architectural design services for residential communities, retail, hospitality, mixed-use and related specialty developments. KTGY maintains offices in Irvine, Oakland, Santa Monica and Denver.

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Manny Gonzalez, senior partner in KTGY's Santa Monica office and president of KTGY Group, Colorado, will speak at two sessions at the International Builders’ Show in January. His IBS sessions come on the heels of recent speeches at the Multifamily Executive Conference and Big Builder magazine’s pioneering virtual program.

At IBS, Gonzalez will speak on the panel “High Density - 50 Units Per Acre and More.” Gonzalez will discuss how to maximize the number of units you can build, while providing smaller apartments or condos that are still attractive to residents.

He also will speak on the panel "From Woodstock to Wii: These Generations are Closer Than You Think!" He will help attendees to understand current preferences and expectations among the 50+, GenXers and Millennial markets and where they're headed.

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Five employees of Sacramento-based Pacific Coast Building Products have achieved LEED AP status.

Doug Fitzgerald of HC Muddox and Jeff Elder, Shannon Riley-Perry, Sunup Mathew and Don Strange from Interstate Brick earned the status. By obtaining this status, each of them is qualified to help accomplish the goals of the LEED program. Those goals include raising consumer awareness on the benefits of green building; promoting integrated, whole-building design practices; and transforming the building market.

This group is the first in the Pacific Coast Building Products family of companies to obtain the LEED AP status and among a select few in the entire brick business to have earned the credential.

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Names in the News is compiled by California Builder editor Greg Robertson. Information on promotions, awards and other news in the homebuilding industry can be sent to him at