Executive Chairman

As executive chairman of ESD, Raj Gupta leads the company’s mission to Improve Society Through the Built Environment. He works on long-term initiatives to support the company’s future, including the expansion of career development paths for employees, promotion of the ESD brand and corporate governance. He champions ESD’s embrace of globalization and positions the firm to compete in our digital economy. He nurtures ESD’s unique culture and advances its values: respect everyone, work hard and play to win.

Raj is active with charitable and civic organizations, including the Adler Planetarium, ESD’s Golfing for Good, Young Presidents’ Organization, World Business Chicago and the Economic Club of Chicago. He holds bachelor degrees in management engineering and mechanical engineering from Claremont McKenna College and Washington University, respectively, along with a master degree in communications from Northwestern University.


  • “Healthy Buildings: What Will It Take to Transform Work Environments?” Chicago Architecture Center. March 2021.
  • “How Important Are Company Values and Culture?” Ditch Digger CEO Podcast. September 2020.
  • “Gupta Explains Riverside’s Steps to Improve Indoor Air Quality.” Riverside video. August 2020.
  • Midwest Finalist for Entrepreneur of the Year. Ernst and Young. August 2020.
  • “Worries about COVID-19 spreading through the vents send Chicago building owners in search of cleaner air.” Chicago Tribune. Quoted. July 2020.
  • “2020: A Space Planning Odyssey.” The Rooftops Project. August 2020.
  • “Further, Faster.” Madison Rose Podcast. June 2020.
  • “COVID-19: HVAC Systems, IAQ and Back to Work Best Practices with COVID-19 Focus.” BOMA Chicago Webinar. May 2020.
  • “A Changed World: What Happens When We Return to the Office?” IA Webinar. April 2020.
  • “Real Estate in a Post COVID-19 World.” Re Journals Webinar. April 2020.
  • Alumni Achievement Award. McKelvey School of Engineering, Washington University. May 2019.
  • “A Matter of Trust.” The Rooftops Conference Chicago 2018. Panelist. February 2018.
  • “Applying Technology in Buildings: How to be Proactive in a Reactive World.” CBRE Asset Services Team. Chicago, July 2017.
  • YJP New York CEO Leadership, Innovation & Diversity Symposium. Panelist. New York City. January 2017.
  • Biennial Conference for Sustainable Design and Solution. Panelist. Harvey Mudd College. October 2016.
  • “Leadership Crucial as Building Complexity Increases.” Consulting Electrical Engineers Technical Forum & Tradeshow. Keynote Speaker. May 2016.
  • “Improving Society Through the Built Environment.” Chicago Professionals Network Reception. Keynote Speaker. March 2016.
  • “A Day in the Life: Technology in the Workplace.” February 2015.
  • “Embrace Engineering Change – Or Risk Failure.” Consulting Specifying Engineer. September, 2012.
  • “The Battle for Comfort.” Consulting Specifying Engineer. July 2009. Co-written with Larry Dykstra.
  • “Engineering Leadership.” Control Engineering. February, 2008.
  • “Engineering Leadership.” Consulting Specifying Engineer. February, 2008.
  • “Designing UFAD Systems.” Building Design & Construction. July 2005. Co-written with Kurt Karnatz.
  • “Technology Transfusion.” Consulting Specifying Engineer. July 2005. Co-written with David Marshall.
  • “More ‘Nines’ Not Always Better.” Consulting Specifying Engineer. June 2003.
  • “The Latest in High-Performance Tenant Issues: METS.” Real Estate Chicago Magazine. September 2002.
  • “Mission-Critical Facilities: The Next Generation.” Building Operating Management. September 2002.
  • “Debunking Myths about the Future of Telecom Hotels.” Consulting Specifying Engineer. July 2001.Co-written with Morris Toporek.
  • “HVAC for Commercial Office Buildings.” HPAC Engineering. March 1997.
  • “Which Refrigerant Replacement.” The BOMA / Chicago Report. September 1995.
  • “Chillers and Refrigerants.” Engineered Systems. September 1995.
  • “A Building’s Mechanical Systems are Important to Prospective Tenants.” The BOMA / Chicago Report. April 1991.