Construction related background data
It is hard for a resume to detail years of experience so let me add a bit here so folks can better understand my background on the construction side.
In the 80's on the power side of the drilling industry I was in field engineering and start up. Most of my time was spent on the rigs and in shipyards during the construction and start up phases.
In Japan and in Argentina I worked in the project offices on site overseeing all the electrical installation work and commissioning for two offshore rigs, a 5,000 foot semi-submersible and a 300 foot jack up rig.
Moving into the power industry in the Amazon region of Brasil I was a technical advisor to Electro Norte, the utility company, training their staff on O&M for the LM 2500 aero derivative machines.
From there I was moved to a new fast track project in Venezuela as the Site/Plant Manager. Oversaw the installation of an LM 2500 unit personally did the commissioning work and hired & trained all the local staff later staying on as the Plant Manager.
Within about a year we won 3 fast track projects in Colombia so I was sent there as the Area Manager to hire and train the O&M staff. The first unit that was ready to be started up when I arrived. I then moved on to Cali during the last stages of construction, did the same, and then handed off to an incoming plant manager.Then I went to Villavicencio where the project was only about 3 months underway. As owners representative (Ecopetrol) I witnessed all testing, signed off on civil, mechanical and electrical construction and oversaw the quality of the works.These were LM 5000 units.Stayed on as plant manager.
Leaving SSOI I went to a construction site in Honduras, where only the civil work was done and stayed until the HFO fired engines were installed. Oversaw the construction quality and set up the O&M team and procedures.
From there, I was transferred to Puerta Plata in the Dominican Republic in 1992/3 and for the first time in my career took over an operating power plant (barge) that was already 100 % constructed when I arrived.
Two years later I was recruited by NAES for a plant in Comodoro Rivadavia, in fact today I am writing from this same plant as the Project Director overseeing the conversion of 2 GE frame 6 units to CCGT.(That’s in additional to my O&M job as I also oversee a special projects group of 32 people.) The Project mgr here had to leave recently due to family issues and I have stepped in now with an assistant to finish it up) My current company bought this plant in 2004 when I informed them it was for sale.
When I arrived to Comodoro in 1996 I again hired all the folks, set up the O&M and performed all punch list inspections with the EPC contractor.
In 1998 an old friend who was the HR director at Enron recruited me. This was for a 480 MW Siemens 84.3a plant in Brasil.I arrived there when the project was in the civil works stage.The Owners engineers’ team reported to me (Parsons) there were an Sr Project manager and field inspector experts and 2 local electrical and mechanical inspectors.Their job was to be the owners engineers, watch over schedule, change orders, quality and were involved in the commissioning processes.So, in addition to my plant manager’s duties I was very actively involved in the EPC work and attended most project meetings.
Two years later my previous company from the Dom Rep re-hired me to be the Director of Operations for 5 power plants totaling 600 MW.These plants had been government run for 35 years and were worse than junk when we took them over.We hired Alstom Power in Milan for a $ 23 M dollar job to finish the construction of a 50 MW coal plant that had been under construction for 12 years.... We had it on line in 11 months and rebuilt all the equipment in that time frame. This is the best performing asset in the fleet today.
Then we sourced a local contractor for a $ 4.5 M job of rebuilding the Puerta Plata steam plant that had blown up the deareator 2 months before we took over the facilities, destroying all the control systems.This job was done in 7 months.
The three steam plants at Rio Haina all had to be rebuilt from the ground up and we did this in about two years with the special projects team I set up using two experienced Colombians and the rest all local staff hand picked from the existing plants manpower.
I then decided to take some time off to be with my family and had trained my replacement at Haina and left the company. (Now called Basic Energy)
After a few months of rest I was contacted by a recruiting firm for a short term job in Iraq, the two previous project managers had been rejected on site by the US Army corps of engineers as being of insufficient knowledge to get the job done.The company was to lose its contract if USACE was not appeased and made me a handsome offer.To make a long story short, the project was a real mess, too many cooks in the kitchen.
Therefore, I just picked the role of site construction manager rather than fight with the long term employees on the job to see who would be the “project manager”, brought in three of my ex-staff, set up the QA/QC program, got the USACE’s blessing, set up a technical training program and finished off the remaining construction items for the two V 84.2 units and handed over to Siemens for commissioning and left.
The main reason was security concerns as some things were happening that my military background led me to believe were reckless. The senior site management and security staff took no real action, in fact basically treated lightly the issues. Two months later the senior project manager was kidnapped and killed along with one of the security staff.
My previous company (Basic) wanted me back so I returned and was promoted to VP of O&M and Internal Projects.During the last 3 years or so I have been involved in many different project evaluations, 240 MW coal conversion now in MOU stage, 35 MW HFO plant for Haiti, PPA and EPC contract now signed, 300MW CCGT plant conversion to gas from LFO contracts with constructor and Siemens are ready to go just waiting on gas, spending time in China researching power equipment, taking over two functional plants in Panama and Jamaica, and converting the Frame 6 units in Argentina to CCGT for $ 550 per kw using equipment I sourced both new and used. To my knowledge and according to GEA, this is the first time a large air-cooled condenser has been removed from one site and reinstalled at another.
Despite having no direct experience as a large scale EPC project manager I certainly have the confidence with the right team any project can be accomplished. If Ihave learned one thing during my career it’s this; the trick to being successful is simple.Hire the right people that are smarter than you are, especially in the areas where you may weak.