The Consulting Engineer

I recently came across a 50-year old brochure from KPFF’s formative years, with the following statement about what it means to be a Consulting Engineer at KPFF:


THE CONSULTING ENGINEER At Kelly, Pittelko, Fritz, and Forssen (circa 1967)

“The consulting engineer is a dedicated professional, representing the best interest of clients in the planning, analysis, or design of physical projects. He must balance initial economy against long-haul performance. He must innovate and conceptualize, yet remain a realist. He must serve as a catalyst to make things happen. He must tie together the physical, financial, and intangible loose ends of every project.  He must do all this in the shortest possible time. On large or small assignments our CE symbol guarantees this dedicated professional service to you.”

While written in a voice and manner more suited for the ‘60s, the concepts describing what differentiates a Consulting Engineer at KPFF are just as appropriate today. 

A consultant is formally defined as “an expert who provides advice.” One could also loosely define a consultant as a “helper.” In the design and construction business, adding value while providing engineering services is highly dependent on maintaining a very broad perspective on what a project really needs. We must strive to adapt to the changing needs of our clients and projects in order to be valuable consultants. Above all, as described in the aforementioned brochure, we need to “make things happen.”

Our formal name of “KPFF Consulting Engineers” can be a mouthful, and many people choose to refer to us simply as KPFF. Regardless of our name, it is our intent that the attitude and actions of the men and women that make up KPFF continually demonstrate that we are the “helpers” that help our projects and clients succeed.

-John Gavan, President

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