Boston, MA Nitsch Engineering said today that Judy Nitsch, PE, LEED AP BD+C, the firm’s founding principal, is retiring today, in keeping with the ownership and leadership transition plan that Nitsch started many years ago. Chairman and CEO Lisa Brothers, PE, ENV SP, LEED AP BD+C will continue to lead Nitsch Engineering.
Nitsch founded Nitsch Engineering (then called Judith Nitsch Engineering, Inc.) in 1989, and led the company as president until 2011, when Brothers transitioned into the role of president and CEO. Nitsch continued to serve as chairman of the board until 2016, when Brothers stepped into that role as well. Since 2016, Ms. Nitsch has served on the board of directors and worked part-time focusing on client relationships and business development.
Nitsch said, “When I founded Nitsch Engineering, I envisioned a company that went above and beyond to meet client needs, and that would do excellent engineering work with, as we like to say, ‘a smile on our face.’ I’m truly delighted with the company that Nitsch Engineering has grown to become, and how the leaders and employees are so well prepared and poised to bring the company to even more success. I know the company will be ‘building better communities with you’ for a long time!”
Brothers added, “In 1989, when I first heard that Judy was going to start her own firm, I followed her out of the meeting and said, ‘Not without me!’ I knew from the beginning that her vision and drive would result in a company that would not only succeed, but would thrive – and I knew that we would make a great team to make that happen. Over the past 30 years, Judy and I have learned a lot from each other, and I’m so proud that she’s been my business partner and friend for so long. The whole company is grateful to Judy for her early commitment to transition planning, which allowed us to put a schedule in place for this milestone event years ago. And we’re so thankful to her for what she has helped build here – we’re proud to continue building on her legacy! While we’ll miss working with her, we wish her all the best as she moves forward into the next phase of her life!”
While Nitsch is retiring from Nitsch Engineering, she will remain involved in the architecture/engineering/ construction (AEC) industry. She currently serves as the vice chair of the board of trustees of the Boston Architectural College and is an Emerita Trustee at Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI). She also serves on three boards: for Pennoni Associates, an engineering firm in Philadelphia; for Ayers Saint Gross, an architecture firm in Baltimore; and for Eastern Bank in Boston. Nitsch will also continue to serve on the U.S. Department of State Bureau of Overseas Building Operations’ Industry Advisory Group, performing peer reviews of embassies and consulates around the world, which she has been doing since 2014.
Nitsch’s work over the past 40+ years in the civil engineering field has focused on the design and management of site development and infrastructure-related projects. She has been a registered Professional Engineer in 27 states and the District of Columbia, and she has provided civil engineering services on educational, residential, commercial, office, and industrial development projects. Nitsch is particularly proud of the work she has done providing sustainable site and stormwater management design on master plan and building projects; she collaborated with other Nitsch Engineering employees on projects such as the MIT Stata Center in Cambridge, MA; first-of-their-kind regional stormwater master plans for the University of Virginia campus in Charlottesville, VA; stormwater planning for the Princeton University campus in Princeton, NJ; and the Brooklyn Bridge Park project in Brooklyn, NY. She also served in the U.S. General Services Administration (GSA) Design Excellence Program as a peer reviewer for the design of various ports of entry for the federal government since 2004.
Nitsch has been a well-known leader in the AEC industry. She has been president of Commercial Real Estate Women (CREW) Network (2014), the American Council of Engineering Companies of Massachusetts (ACEC, 1998-1999), The Engineering Center (1987-1988), the Boston Society of Civil Engineers Section/ASCE (BSCES, 1986-1987), and the Society of Women Engineers-Boston Section (SWE, 1984-1986). She has also served in leadership roles on committees and boards with the Greater Boston Chamber of Commerce, Boston Society of Architects (BSA), Society for College & University Planning (SCUP), Society for Marketing Professional Services (SMPS), and Urban Land Institute (ULI) Boston. Nitsch also co-chaired the United States Green Building Council’s (USGBC’s) 2017 International Greenbuild Conference + Expo host committee in Boston.
A graduate of Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) with a bachelor of science in civil engineering, Nitsch has a long history of giving back to her alma mater. In 1989, she was elected the first alumna member to WPI’s board of trustees; she served as chair of the Facilities and Campus Infrastructure Committee for 16 years. Under Nitsch’s leadership, WPI developed two master plans and built many projects, including a Campus Center, a LEED-Certified admissions building, a LEED-Gold residence hall, and a LEED-Gold Sports & Recreation Center. She also served on the WPI Alumni Association Board. She was named an Emeritus Trustee in 2012.
Throughout her career, Nitsch has been committed to mentoring future engineers and entrepreneurs, and to opening the door for female engineers, who are still underrepresented in the field. Her work as an active mentor for WPI’s students and through a number of professional societies, as well as her commitment to Nitsch Engineering’s annual Introduce a Girl to Engineering Day since 2002, has given many future engineers the opportunity to learn more about the industry and meet role models.
For her contributions, Nitsch has received a number of accolades. She received an Honorary Doctor of Engineering Degree from WPI in 2015, and an Honorary Doctor of Science Degree from the Massachusetts Maritime Academy in 2010. She has also been recognized by a number of organizations and institutions, with awards including the WPI Hall of Luminaries Honorary Award (2017), Preservation Massachusetts Paul & Niki Tsongas Award (2016), CREW Boston Leadership Award (2015), New England Women in Energy and the Environment (NEWIEE) Leadership Award (2015), EY New England Region Entrepreneur of the Year Award (2014), CE News “Power List” (2011), WPI Robert H. Goddard Award for Outstanding Professional Achievement (2005), SWE National Entrepreneur Award (2004), Massachusetts Women’s Political Caucus’s 14th Annual Abigail Adams Award (2001), BSA Women in Design Award (2000), ASCE Parcel-Sverdrup Engineering Management Award (2000), Patriot’s Trail Girl Scout Council Leading Women Award (2000), NEWIRE (now CREW Boston) Entrepreneur of the Year (1999), WTS-Boston Woman of the Year (1997), Massachusetts Society of Professional Engineers Young Engineer of the Year (1988), BSCES/ASCE President’s Award (1988), WPI John Boynton Award in Recognition of Outstanding and Exemplary Service (1987), WPI Ichabod Washburn Award in Recognition of Outstanding Profession Achievement by a Young Alumnus (1985), ASCE Edmund Friedman Young Engineer Award for Professional Achievement (1984), and SWE Distinguished New Engineer Award (1982). Nitsch has been recognized as a Fellow of ACEC, ASCE, SWE, and SMPS.
Nitsch began her career in 1975 as a project engineer at Schofield Brothers, Inc. She was promoted to a branch office manager after three years, managing Freeman Engineering Company (a Division of Schofield Brothers, Inc.) for four years. In 1982, Nitsch joined Allen & Demurjian, Inc. as a senior project manager; she joined their board of directors and became a shareholder in 1983, and the company was renamed Allen, Demurjian, Major & Nitsch, Inc. in 1986. When that company was purchased in 1989, Nitsch chose to leave and found Judith Nitsch Engineering, Inc. (now Nitsch Engineering).