"We engineer fear.” A fitting tagline for a company run by an engineer with a scary sort of creativity. SIUE Engineering alum Kip Polley ('05) started Pale Night Productions (PNP) in 2005, shortly before he graduated from SIUE. The company specializes in the creation of props, effects and haunted attractions.
Check out these videos featuring SIUE Engineering alum Kip Polley ('05) for a behind-the-scenes look at how his company, Pale Night Productions, uses state-of-the-art technology like video integrated animatronics to create the frightening effects found in haunted houses.
David Brammeier has always been driven to excel, from achieving the rank of Eagle Scout as a teen to becoming a professional engineer and civic leader. While attending SIUE, David began working for George Crawford and Associates. He received his degree in urban and environmental engineering in 1975 and two years later, at the age of 24, he became an owner, which triggered the reorganization of the company as Crawford, Bunte, Brammeier (CBB). At the same time, David was elected to public office and served 28 consecutive years as a civic leader. He rose through the ranks at CBB, serving as vice-president, president and in 2005, became CBB’s chief executive officer. In March 2013, he began his semi-retirement and currently serves as one of the principals of CBB. He focuses much of his effort and attention on the firm’s Glen Carbon office in order to provide complete transportation engineering and planning services to Illinois communities. On October 4, David was inducted to the SIUE Alumni Hall of Fame. On the top of his list of achievements is raising his two sons, Brad and Brian, both Eagle Scouts and SIUE grads.
Originally from Wisconsin, Vicki LaRose now considers St. Louis her home. She earned her bachelor's in civil engineering from SIUE and her master's in engineering management from Missouri Science and Technology. Vicki founded Civil Design Inc.(CDI) in 1996 to provide responsive, quality-driven civil engineering services. Under Vicki LaRose’s direction, CDI has experienced continuous success, gaining a reputation for delivering on-time, in-budget designs for construction management, environmental, roadway and site development projects. It has grown from operating out of her basement with one employee to owning a building in Soulard with twenty-seven engineers, technicians and surveyors. She is married and works with her husband Dennis, who is also a civil engineer. Together they have three children: Nathan, Ben and Tori.
Oliver Coulson, a 2007 construction management graduate, vowed to never have a “real” job. A senior project engineer at Tarlton Corporation, he feels he has not broken that vow. Coulson supervises complex projects and excels in providing construction solutions that meet and exceed owner expectations. In the seven years that he has been with Tarlton, he has worked on four projects that total $124 million. He serves as president of the Missouri Chapter of the American Concrete Institute, co-chair of SIBA’s Safety and Crime Prevention committee and a member of the Associated General Contractors of St. Louis’s Construction Leadership Council. Coulson was recognized by the St. Louis Business Journal as one of St. Louis’ 30 under 30 for 2013. The award recognizes 30 future business leaders who are under 30 years of age.
When Matthew Pfund graduated from the SIUE Construction Management program in 1996, he was no stranger to the construction business. The residential construction company he started as a high school student, Pfund Construction, is still in operation. He now serves as vice president and project director of Tarlton Corporation and is a sought after team member for landmark projects in the St. Louis area, such as the $130 million St. Louis Art Museum expansion, $90 million Olin Business School at Washington University expansion, and $75 million BJC HealthCare tower. He serves as president of the SIUE Construction Alumni Society and is an active member of the Department of Construction advisory board. Pfund was recognized by the St. Louis Business Journal in 2002 as one of St. Louis’ 30 under 30. In 2013, he was named one of St. Louis’ 40 under 40, an award which recognizes 40 professionals making their mark on the local business community before they are 40 years old.
Kenneth Cates earned a bachelor's in construction in 1996. He is currently the executive vice-president of Northstar Management Company, a firm he co-founded. Ken is a Certified Healthcare Constructor who has developed educational programs for healthcare owners, architects and contractors; chaired design and construction planning meetings for national conferences; and given countless hours to enhance the process of planning, design and construction of healthcare facilities. Ken has worked on more than 1,000 projects with a lifetime value of more than $3 billion. In 2009, he was awarded the Crystal Eagle Award from the ASHE of the American Hospital Association, recognizing him for his excellent leadership qualities, innovation and overall contribution to ASHE. On October 12, 2012, the School of Engineering inducted Ken into the Hall of Fame. career opportunities. Kay graduated from SIUE in 1988 with a B.S. in industrial engineering and from Washington University with a Masters of engineering management in 1993.
Dr. Kurt Smith is an engineer and entrepreneur who started his first company while a student at SIUE. Since then, he has founded 15 different ventures and is currently the global vice-president of New Growth Platforms at Covidien, a $10 billion medical technology company that provides surgical and therapeutic products. Smith, who earned a bachelor's in electrical engineering in 1985 and a master's in electrical engineering in 1986, earned a Doctor of Science in electrical and biomedical engineering from Washington University in St. Louis. His work has revolutionized the operating room, enabling surgeons to actually see where they were in real time on MRI and CT images displayed in the operating room. On October 12, 2012, the School of Engineering inducted Kurt into the Hall of Fame.
|“Because of SIUE, I've had the opportunity to stand between engineering and operations.”
Kay Guse, BS '88
|“My crowning achieving in the School of Engineering is my son Nick, who also graduated from SIUE.”
Jim Heinz (BS 1983)
|Tyria Riley is designing C-17 training devices as an electrical hardware engineer at The Boeing Company. In this position she is responsible for all drawings, schedules, and customer coordination relating to the electrical components. She is active in the National Society of Black Engineers, Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers and Society of Women Engineers and currently serves on the SIUE School of Electrical and Computer Engineering Advisory Board. She also speaks to high school and college students about the importance of pursuing higher education in the science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) fields. Tyria graduated from SIUE August 2002 with a BS electrical engineering. She earned a master's in systems engineering from Missouri University of Science and Technology and her doctorate in engineering management at Missouri S&T.|