Get to Know GAI: 5 Questions for Transportation Leader Kevin Leadbetter, PE, MBA

In our ‘Get to Know GAI’ series, you’ll hear a range of GAI professionals offer their takes on the current state of the AEC industry, and their inside views of some of the innovative projects that GAI is bringing to life around the United States. GAI’s experienced professionals remain at the forefront, delivering innovative solutions to a range of transportation, industrial, municipal, energy, and development clients.

Today, GAI Senior Vice President and Board of Directors member Kevin Leadbetter, PE, MBA, Transportation Business Unit Director, discusses some of his impressions of how GAI has adapted to the unprecedented health concerns and other factors affecting today’s world, and how he’s continuing to lead his field in providing the advanced engineering services that GAI’s clients demand.

Q:Please tell us who you are and describe your area of expertise and what you do at GAI.

Kevin Leadbetter: My name is Kevin Leadbetter, I’m a Senior Vice President and Director of GAI’s Transportation Business Unit. I’ve been working in the transportation construction and engineering business for 25 years, nearly 16 of those years with GAI, based out of Jacksonville, FL. Before coming to GAI, I worked for close to 10 years as a roadway construction superintendent, project manager, and operations manager for a large roadway contractor. My focus at GAI has been on our transportation design, design-build, and CEI business in Florida and throughout the company.

Q: How has the pandemic evolved the way GAI and your group operate?

Kevin: With a few exceptions, our projects in the Transportation Business Unit have not seen big impacts from the pandemic, with projects moving forward and schedules being maintained. Our group, and really all of GAI, has done a fantastic job adapting to this situation and continues to meet the needs of our clients. I’ve been proud of the way the team has performed.

Due to the dedication of our team, we have been able to continue to operate pretty much seamlessly. In several locations we have been able to continue working in the office throughout most of the pandemic following our office Health and Safety Procedure (HASP), which is based on Centers for Disease Control (CDC) guidelines and best practices.

Additionally, some staff are working from home much of the time. In order to avoid impact to our quality of work and project schedules, this has required an increased effort to communicate among the team members, as some of the required day-to-day interaction and collaboration has taken place remotely rather than in person. Again, I have been so impressed by the team’s ability to make needed adjustments and continue serving our clients as an essential industry.

Q: What are you working on right now that you’re excited about?

Kevin: Throughout the Transportation Business Unit we have identified opportunities in new locations and new lines of business to help grow and diversify the group. Our team is focused on refining our approach and process to pursue these new clients and win new and exciting projects. I’m very excited about the strides we have made over the last several years and look forward to continuing this throughout 2021.

Q: What do you foresee for the AEC industry in 2021?

Kevin: I am optimistic that given the critical nature of the transportation business, and the history of strong state and federal government funding of our industry during difficult times, that we will stay strong as we move forward from the pandemic.

Q: What’s the latest on the City of Jacksonville Beach Downtown Redevelopment Plan?

Kevin: We often talk about new projects and new clients, yet some of our most important assets are our long-term return clients, such as the City of Jacksonville Beach, Florida. GAI has been serving this client as their General Consultant continuously for more than 14 years. We were recently re-selected to provide engineering design and construction engineering services on the next phase of the city’s Downtown Redevelopment Plan. This selection is the product of the GAI team’s continuous dedication and Client First attitude. We are fortunate to be working for this excellent client.

Find out more about GAI’s transportation engineering and design work:

For more information about the full range of GAI’s transportation engineering and design services, contact Kevin Leadbetter, PE, MBA, 904.559.8087. Message GAI online and start the conversation about how our multidiscipline professionals can meet your unique project needs.

Kevin Leadbetter, PE, MBA is a member of GAI’s Board of Directors and director of GAI’s Transportation Business Unit, a position in which he oversees a staff of technical professionals and project managers on transportation construction engineering and inspection, design, design-build, survey, and right-of-way/eminent domain projects. Kevin draws upon decades of experience specializing in project management/construction engineering, including as a senior project engineer and senior advisor on large roadway construction projects, as well as major design-build projects.

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