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CSE’s 40 Under 40 Winners – 2015

Julie DeNardis, Nathan Snydacker, and Rick Szcodronski, Recognized in CSE's 2015 "40 Under 40"

Julie DeNardis, LEED AP, Estidama PQP
Vice President, Mechanical Engineer

DeNardis joined ESD in 2000 after earning her mechanical engineering degree. Within 2 years she was promoted to associate, and in 2006 she was promoted to senior associate. By this time, she had moved into what is now called ESD's High Performance Buildings group, working on large-scale commercial and mixed-use building projects. As the green building industry tookoff, DeNardis became increasingly focused on sustainability. After becoming a LEED AP in 2006, she became the project manager and mechanical engineer for the design of HSBC's North American headquarters. When ESD decided to expand its operations in the Middle East, DeNardis was asked to relocate to Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates, to open the company's first international office. She became the director of ESD's Abu Dhabi office in 2009. Her first project there was construction oversight of the Sowwah Square office towers. Green building became a focus in Abu Dhabi with the development of Estidama, United Arab Emirates' version of LEED. DeNardis became an Estidama Pearl Qualified Professional in 2011, one of the first 250 to do so in the region. Since she has been in the region, she has embraced the culture, developed an understanding of local codes, and built relationships with the local authorities. ESD's Abu Dhabi office started with DeNardis and one other person. Now, there are six staffmembers. In 2014, the Middle East branch office moved to Sowwah Square, which they helped design. When she's not designing sustainable world-class buildings, DeNardis enjoys traveling, photography, cooking, and entertaining.

Nathan Snydacker, PE, LEED AP
Senior Vice President, Mechanical Engineer

As leader of ESD's Workplace Solutions Practice, Snydacker oversees all of the firm's corporate interiors projects and leads a group of more than 40 project managers and engineers. Throughout his career at ESD, he also has been responsible for project management and designing efficient and cost-effective mechanical systems, performing load analysis, writing specifications, and preparing mechanical design documents. His experience includes commercial interiors; data centers; airports; and educational, sports, and retail facilities. He started at ESD in 1999 as a mechanical engineer in what was the company's education group. Within a year, he began transitioning into a project management role. He worked as a production coordinator and junior project manager while he was the lead mechanical engineer on multiple renovation projects at Chicago's U.S. Cellular Field, including mechanical system design and specification. As he branched into other project management roles, he soon became a trusted advisor to some of ESD's key clients, such as McDonald's Corp. In 2010, he was designated the mechanical technical authority for ESD's corporate interiors group, assisting in the development of the firm's quality management program and design standards. Starting in 2013, Snydacker began shifting into his current role as practice leader of the Workplace Solutions Group; the team is focused on how advances in technology impact current work spaces and how emerging trends will continue to drive innovation. In the MEP world, client expectations are met when their space is comfortable and functional. Snydacker played guitar in a band called Chin Up Chin Up, which released several albums; toured through North America and Europe; and played Chicago's Lollapalooza in 2007. Although his touring days are over, he still loves playing music. He is teaching his 6-year-old daughter how to play the piano.

Rick Szcodronski
Senior Associate, Technology Systems

Szcodronski joined ESD in June 2008 after earning his degree. He focused his studies on computer architecture, wired and wireless networking, signals and systems, electromechanical controls, and environmental monitoring. He now helps design building technology systems, such as structured cabling, audiovisual, security, building automation, and data centers. He is also a practice leader with technology consulting services for data and wireless networks, voice systems, and migration planning design. In addition, he is involved with project management, MEP coordination, and maintaining the accuracy and quality of designs from inception to completion. Recently, Szcodronski transferred to California to help expand ESD's West Coast presence and focus on the growing demand for smart building design and strategy services. He was one of the lead technology designers on the Masdar Headquarters project in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. Masdar HQ was designed as the world's first mixed-use, positive-energy building, using sustainable design strategies and systems to produce more energy than it consumes. Szcodronski developed a custom energy model that tracks the annual energy consumption of all the components within the building. He soon became ESD's technical leader for data and wireless networking, and virtual desktop infrastructure. Szcodronski has become a subject matter expert within ESD as well as the engineering community. This distinction is augmented byhis published articles and white papers on wireless technology and smart buildings. When at home, Szcodronski's passion is playing, watching, and discussing basketball. His recent move to California allows him to enjoy playing outdoors-even during the winter months.