Ray Kowalik

Chief Executive Officer
Board Chairman

Ray Kowalik exudes leadership and entrepreneurialism. He is a fierce believer in employee ownership, a community champion, and a master at embracing complex challenges and developing strategies to create innovative solutions.

Ray started his career here in the 1980s as an engineer, and he’s never looked back. With his natural business instincts and abilities to build strong relationships with clients and lift up those around him, he has accelerated through the ranks: to vice president in 2001, to president of the Energy Group in 2007, and to the board of directors in 2009 before becoming — in 2015 — the firm's first executive vice president and president of global practices. He has been chairman and CEO since 2017, leading our company of more than 10,000 professionals around the world and spearheading thousands of hours and millions of dollars in giving-back efforts.

In the community:

Out of the office, Ray invests time and energy into organizations that support education, health and economic development. He supports organizations including:

  • United Way of Greater Kansas City, former board chair
  • Kansas City Area Development Council, board co-chair
  • Kansas City Union Station, board vice chair
  • Notre Dame de Sion, board member
  • Civic Council of Greater Kansas City, member
  • Kansas City Market Board of U.S. Bank, member
  • University of Missouri College of Engineering Dean’s Advisory Council, member
  • St. Luke’s Health System, board member
What inspired you to pursue your career?

I grew up in the country and always liked building things, exploring and figuring out how things worked. When I was young, we needed to move because the Corps of Engineers was building a new lake. So, my summer “job” as a 12-year-old was to help tear down an old house and barns to repurpose the materials for new construction. It really got me interested in how things went together. Plus, I was good at math and science.

How do you and your team make the world a better place?

We solve the world's biggest challenges through our customers. If we can make them successful, we know we are doing our part to help solve those challenges.

What’s the coolest part of your job?

Helping people develop themselves and their careers and seeing them succeed.