Jeff Lighthiser Honored with Lifetime Achievement Award

We’re proud to announce that Jeff Lighthiser, PE, Draper Aden Associates’ President and CEO, was recently honored by the Richmond Joint Engineers’ Council with its 2018 Engineer of the Year Award. This recognition highlights Jeff’s enduring impact on the engineering profession. Congrats to Jeff!

As our firm’s President and CEO, he is involved in high-level decisions about policy, vision, and strategy. Jeff advises the Board of Directors, motivates employees, and drives change within the organization all while overseeing day-to-day operations and financial growth of the firm. He has been a member of the Draper Aden team for 42 years and played an integral role in the firm’s expansion during that time. For example, Jeff helped open our Richmond office in 1985 and has been a key figure in its growth as Richmond has become the firm’s largest office.

Not only has the firm grown under Jeff’s leadership, but he has shaped its future by instilling a new values-based culture. When Jeff became CEO seven years ago, he worked tirelessly with internal teams to update the firm’s vision, corporate values, and company culture. These changes have transformed the firm and positioned it for long-term success. Throughout his career, Jeff has proven to be a true visionary and his legacy will be his ability to leave a lasting, positive impact on the firm, his clients, and the communities he’s served.

Jeff has extensive experience with site planning and utilities engineering projects for both public and private clients. The Richmond Joint Engineers’ Council annually recognizes a local engineer who has made a significant contribution to the engineering profession in the greater Richmond metropolitan area through the application of engineering principles, the development of new technology, or the refinement of an existing technology.

Some of Jeff’s key projects in the Richmond region include the State Capitol renovation and Mead Westvaco corporate headquarters as well as various projects with Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden and the Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond. His long-term work with of three local private and public institutions stand out:

Henrico County: Jeff has worked closely with Henrico County on an array of projects, including design engineering and surveying for 13 drainage improvement projects throughout Henrico County. Work included installation of storm sewers in older communities, which required major utility relocations.

University of Richmond: As Managing Principal, Jeff has overseen the the surveying and site engineering for over 20 years of campus expansion, including Lakeview Hall, Weinstein Center for Recreation & Wellness, Gottwald Science Center, Boatwright Library addition, Jepson Hall, Campus Forum Walk, Law School addition, Campus Ministries Building, Jepson Alumni Center, apartment units for student housing, and the Fine Arts Center expansion.

Virginia Commonwealth University: Jeff also has served as the Principal-in-Charge of geotechnical, environmental, civil, surveying, and GIS services to VCU. Projects completed include School of Business and School of Engineering, VCU Health System School of Nursing, Shafer Court Dining Center, Stuart C. Siegel Center, campus master plans, and environmental site assessments.

We can’t think of anyone else more deserving of this honor. Congrats again to Jeff on his Engineer of the Year Award!