Providence Promotes Staff Member to Vice President

Providence Engineering is pleased to announce Dr. Jonathan U. Dougherty has been promoted to Vice President, Strategic Initiatives. Dr. J., as he is known around the firm, will be responsible for setting the direction and executing strategic initiatives including recruiting, professional development, and our employee stock ownership plan (ESOP), among others.

“With Dr. J.’s extensive experience in many aspects of the AEC industry, he hit the ground running as soon as he started with Providence. Our mission has always been to be the Engineer of Choice, and with Jonathan’s knowledge and initiative, Providence Engineering is also an Employer of Choice. We are excited for the future and Dr. J.’s collaborative leadership, as we continue to make Providence a successful firm and a great place to work,” said David Bernhardt, President and CEO of Providence Engineering.

Dr. J. joined Providence Engineering in 2022 after a seventeen-year career with a large regional building contractor. Additionally, Dougherty is a former adjunct professor at Virginia Tech and taught for several years in the department of architectural engineering at The Pennsylvania State University, University Park.

Dr. J. brings nearly 25 years of academic and industry experience to his role. He earned his Bachelor of Architectural Engineering from The Pennsylvania State University and continued his academic career at Penn State, earning his Doctor of Philosophy in Architectural Engineering. He is a champion of students and lifelong learning, as evidenced by his service to various universities and the architecture, engineering, and construction industry. As an alumni leader, Dougherty is an emeritus member of the Penn State Wilkes-Barre Campus Advisory Board, current President for the Penn State Engineering Alumni Society (PSEAS) and founding Board Member and former President of the Penn State Alumni Society of Architectural Engineers (ASAE). His industry service includes being a former Trustee for the Baltimore-Washington Laborer’s Joint Training Fund, serving on the Montgomery College (MD) Construction Industry Advisory Committee, and serving as former Chairperson of the Architectural Engineering Institute’s International Student Design Competition.

Established in 1992, Providence Engineering provides structural, mechanical, electrical, and plumbing design and analysis services to the building industry. Providence creates dependable, innovative solutions that have earned the trust of architects, owners, contractors and those they are privileged to call clients.

Providence Promotes Dan Confer

Providence Engineering is pleased to announce Dan Confer has been promoted to Vice President of Business Development. In his new role, Dan will be responsible, in concert with leadership and the strategic vision of the firm, to oversee the business development and marketing activities of the company.

“Dan impressed us as soon as he started working at Providence and has grown into a trusted leader, insightful manager, and proven sales and business executive. His skill and experience are perfectly suited to lead Providence’s expanding business development and marketing teams,” said David Bernhardt, President and CEO of Providence Engineering.

Confer joined Providence in 2019 as a business development manager, where he was responsible for developing new business throughout South-Central Pennsylvania and Maryland. These efforts have strengthened Providence’s position as a leading provider of structural and MEP design for the building industry.

Confer brings over 13 years of business development experience across the architectural, engineering and construction industries. He has recently been appointed to the Society for Marketing Professional Services Central Pennsylvania Chapter board of directors as a Director At Large. He is also active in many professional organizations in the A/E/C community, as well as several fraternal and community-service organizations. Confer holds a Master of Science in organizational development and leadership from Shippensburg University and a Bachelor of Arts from Dickinson College.

Promotions to Providence Engineering’s Leadership Team

Providence Engineering is pleased to announce the promotions of Dana Ziegler, P.E., and Keith Smith, P.E., S.E. Both Dana and Keith have been promoted to Vice President of Providence Engineering.

Dana and Keith are two of Providence’s longest-tenured employees and they have each had a strong influence on the culture and development of the firm over the years.

Dana started with Providence as an E.I.T. in 1994. He moved on to his family’s construction business before returning to Providence as a P.E. in 2014. He has led our Lehigh Valley office ever since. Keith leads Providence’s York office and has been with the firm for 18 years. He has 3 decades of experience providing structural design services across all markets and project types.

We’re very excited to welcome Dana and Keith to their new roles as members of Providence Engineering’s Leadership Team. Under their continued leadership, quality, timely and affordable solutions will remain the hallmark of our firm.

Providence Engineering Executive Vice President, Mark Ritchie, P.E., Retires

After 37 years in the A/E/C industry, trusted and admired Professional Engineer, Mark Ritchie is retiring as Executive Vice President of Providence Engineering.

Mark has been around the A/E/C industry all his life. His father and grandfather both worked as bricklayers, so from an early age, Mark knew he wanted to be a part of the construction industry. But he also knew he did not like the strenuous physical work in the heat of the summer and cold of winter, so he decided to attend Penn State University and become an engineer.

After graduating in 1984, Mark’s career took him to Baltimore, Pittsburgh, and finally, Central Pennsylvania where he started his own engineering firm in 2000. Based in Carlisle, Ritchie Engineering provided structural design services for thousands of projects throughout Pennsylvania, Ohio and the Mid-Atlantic region.

In January 2017, Ritchie Engineering merged with Providence, and thus, Providence Engineering opened our sixth office in Pennsylvania. Mark would go on to help open and lead the establishment of Providence’s seventh office in his hometown of Pittsburgh.

Mark’s retirement plans include playing more golf with his wife Lisa, spending time with his family, which now includes three grandsons, and remaining an active member of his church and the Carlisle community. 

Congratulations Mark!

Providence Engineering Hires Rebecca C. Thompson

Providence Engineering is pleased to welcome Rebecca C. Thompson to the firm. Becky has joined Providence’s Business Development team and will be responsible for developing new business opportunities throughout Pennsylvania.

With more than 15 years of experience in the AEC industry, Becky brings an informed and thoughtful approach to business development. She is extremely adept at collaborating with owners, builders and designers in order to drive value to projects from the outset. Becky’s commitment to the AEC industry, especially in Central PA, has garnered many longstanding relationships.

Becky holds a Bachelor and Master of Architectural Engineering from Pennsylvania State University.

“I’m very excited to welcome Becky to Providence,” says David Bernhardt, President. “Her professionalism and depth of experience make her a great fit for the Providence team. I look forward to working with her to continue making a positive impact on the built environment.”

Providence Engineering Announce Senior Consultant

Providence Engineering is pleased to announce that Vaughn Silar has joined the firm as a Senior Consultant.

With more than 30 years of experience in the AEC industry, Vaughn has earned a reputation for building successful businesses and delivering exceptional service to many clients throughout the United States. His commitment to the AEC industry, especially in Central PA, has garnered many longstanding relationships.

In his role as Senior Consultant, Vaughn will work closely with the Leadership and Project Management teams at Providence. He will provide high-level strategy as well as guidance on day-to-day operations. Vaughn’s hiring comes as Providence continues to implement its strategic growth plan, while staying focused on client satisfaction and operational simplicity.

“I’m excited for the opportunity to join Providence” says Silar.  “This is a great firm that has contributed to many successful projects throughout the Mid-Atlantic. I believe we are poised to expand market share and I look forward to helping clarify strategic goals and enhance operational efficiency.”