KANSAS CITY, Missouri — Two Burns & McDonnell employee-owners have been selected for Engineering News-Record (ENR) magazine’s 2021 National Top 20 Under 40 list. Jacob Blanton, regional operations director for the Transmission & Distribution Group in the Northeast, and Kyle Roberts, civil engineering department manager for the Aviation & Federal Group in Kansas City, were chosen from a pool of nearly 400 nominees as part of this year’s competition.
With nearly 15 years of design and management experience, Blanton leads six Transmission & Distribution departments in the Northeast, including substation; networks, integration and automation; overhead transmission; site civil; structural; and design technologist teams. He has supported a diverse range of utility and power clients, serving as project manager on more than 140 transmission and substation projects nationwide, totaling the design of more than 1,000 miles of electrical transmission lines from 34.5-kV to 345-kV. Blanton was promoted to operations director in 2017, and in three years has expanded his team from 46 to 105 employees, currently supporting more than 250 projects generating more than $30 million in revenue.
Roberts serves as civil engineering department manager for the Aviation & Federal Group, providing strategic vision for one of the firm’s largest civil engineering teams. He has nearly 30 direct reports, with over 90 staff reporting up through him across nine office locations. Roberts has served a variety of clients for airfield and facility projects, and has designed critical infrastructure solutions for some of the U.S. Department of Defense’s major weapons systems throughout the U.S. and around the world, including the F-15, F-16, F-22 and F-35 programs. Roberts has worked on five continents and in more than 15 countries throughout his 16-year career, including in-country stints for engineering work in Iraq and Afghanistan.
“We are very proud to have two outstanding employee-owners selected as part of this year’s ENR National Top 20 Under 40 list,” says Ray Kowalik, chairman and CEO, Burns & McDonnell. “Our firm is lucky to have Jacob and Kyle as part of our team. Their industry knowledge, leadership and client service go above and beyond and strengthen our teams at Burns & McDonnell.”
Blanton and Roberts were first named as honorees in their respective regions in ENR’s regional Top Young Professionals competition. The highest-scoring candidates from each of the 10 regions were then sent to another panel of judges for selection to the national Top 20 Under 40 list, representing the best of young leaders from across the country.
About Burns & McDonnell
Burns & McDonnell is a family of companies bringing together an unmatched team of 7,600 engineers, construction professionals, architects, planners, technologists and scientists to design and build our critical infrastructure. With an integrated construction and design mindset, we offer full-service capabilities with more than 55 offices, globally. Founded in 1898, Burns & McDonnell is a 100% employee-owned company and proud to be on Fortune’s 2020 list of 100 Best Companies to Work For. Learn how we are on call through it all.