Industry Retirees Recognized as 'Legends' During SC Chapter Dinner

L-R: Mike Elliot and Jim Duffy with son Charles Duffy, hold up trophies the Chapter presented them for their years of contribution to the industry.

The PDCA South Carolina Chapter has identified several key players in the pile driving industry who are retired but were critical in its earliest days to shaping PDCA into what it has become today. During each of the Chapter's 2022 quarterly dinner meetings, it is recognizing these individuals and presenting them with a special PDCA trophy. Chapter President John King stated that 'it's important for some of the younger guys to see and meet the guys that built this organization. We should continue to celebrate them while they are still here to join us for an occasional dinner or event."

During the May 12th dinner meeting, Chapter founder Harry Robbins was first on the agenda, tasked with giving a short presentation on two individuals who have been champions to pile driving in the Charleston region; Mike Elliott who recently retired from Equipment Corporation of America after 50 years in the pling machinery business and Jim Duffy who retired 18 years ago from Soil Consultants, Inc. in Charleston after a notable career as an engineer who worked for optimization and QC/QA of prestressed concrete piles.

Also during the Chapter event, Board Member Scott Nigels (below) of Palmetto Pile Driving who delivered the evening's program, used a wheel barrow to cart in to the meeting facility, a variety of props that he used to supplement his presentation. The materials are commonly used to manufacture pre-cast/pre-stressed concrete pilings, a subject on which he gave an overview covering the history, best practices, and quality control/quality assurances for the concrete piles.

Three attendees (below) at the dinner event were randomly selected as winners of PDCA Bucks during a drawing of business cards that happens each meeting and awards those whose names are drawn, with $50 coupons good for purchases at The PDCA Store, an online retail property of PDCA which contains a variety of logo swag, as well as various other industry resources.
Joseph Cook of Thomas & Hutton
Candi Stegall from Parker Marine Contracting
Jeff Harmston of ECA

The May dinner meeting brought about 50 members of the pile driving industry to Charleston's Town and Country Inn & Suites where attendees enjoyed networking, the famous fried-chicken dinner, relevant programming and general fellowship. The group will congregate next for the third quarter Chapter meeting scheduled for August 18th at the same location.
The PDCA South Carolina Chapter thanks the presenters, attendees and sponsors who made this quarterly dinner possible.

Posted in Chapter News.

Pacific Coast Chapter Raises $29K at 2022 Scholarship Shoot

On April 29, 2022, the PDCA Pacific Coast Chapter gathered for its annual Scholarship Shoot at Birds Landing Hunting Preserve near Oakland, CA. Nearly 150 shooters participated in the event, generating $29,000 in scholarship funds that will be awarded to West Coast students pursing deep foundations careers. 

The annual gathering of the pile driving industry on the U.S. West Coast took place on a picture-perfect, spring day. Attendees enjoyed lunch and fellowship following their participation in the shooting course. The Chapter even handed out special awards for those who stood out for their shooting accuracy, and in one case, inaccuracy. Those awardees included:
Brian Evans, Pat Karinen, Dick Hatfield, Dave Rhodes, Robert Perata, Rod Dubois, and Joe Karinen. The Duck & Cover honoree was Jeff Parkhurst. Congratulations to all!


PDCA Pacific Coast Chapter thanks the following sponsors who helped make the 2022 Scholarship Shoot a success:

Posted in Chapter News.

SC Chapter Honors 'Visionary' Robbins; Credits him as Founder

Charleston, S.C. (February 17, 2022): Calling him "a visionary, an inspiration and dear friend," the South Carolina Chapter of PDCA recognizes Harry Robbins as the first-ever recipient of the J. Harry Robbins, Jr. Award, which signifies a commitment to advancing the driven pile through strength of the Chapter. The ceremony took place during the First Quarter Dinner Meeting of the group - the meeting marked the 75th consecutive gathering of the Chapter since its 2003 founding (2020 is not counted due to COVID interruptions) - at the Town and Country Inn & Suites in Charleston.

As told by South Carolina Chapter of PDCA President John King, "Harry pulled together the other contractors in Charleston to join forces by establishing a localized PDCA presence through the formation of a Chapter. The idea would ensure that driven pile foundations continue to be the preferred deep foundation method in the state and beyond. Some of you might remember how Harry said - we want our piece of the pie to get bigger! He was able to build on the collegiality of the market competitors and earn their willingness to join his vision. He emphasized involving the geotechs in this area because their role in the industry directly impacts success of the driven pile foundation type. And Harry's existing relationships with the suppliers allowed him to gain the important support and influence that they bring to pile driving."

Harry Robbins spent several decades as the President at Palmetto Pile Driving in Charleston, SC. Following his retirement in 2017, his successor Jason Moore has taken the PDCA mantle and volunteered significant portions of his time on South Carolina Chapter of PDCA initiatives. He also has become very active in the national organization where he served as President in 2020.

In his retirement, Harry has maintained membership and participation in the Chapter he founded, as well as the national organization. His legacy in PDCA extends beyond Moore with his demonstrated commitment to the organization. Current Palmetto Pile Driving field manager Scott Nigels, also a Chapter president for two terms, has spent several years on the South Carolina Chapter of PDCA executive committee and joined John King on Thursday in presenting his former boss with the special award named in his honor.
Photo Credits: Ric Anderson, Frank Peters

Posted in Chapter News.

West Coast Students Can Now Apply for Chapter Scholarship; Meet the '21 Winners

PDCA Pacific Coast Chapter 2021 Scholarship Winners


(Left to Right): Sophie Robinson, Zhixiang Jesse Chen, Karen Siqueiros, Erick Medina, Andrew Ballinger

Congratulations to the following winners of the Pacific Coast Chapter of PDCA, 2021 annual scholarship:

  • Andrew Ballinger is a freshman at Chico State University in California who is studying construction management
  • Zhixiang Jesse Chen is a student at San Jose State University who plans to pursue a career in construction in California upon his graduation
  • Erick Medina is a student at California State University - Sacramento where he is completing a curriculum in construction management
  • Sophie Robinson studies English at University of Nevada - Reno; she intends to work in construction communications and/or human resources
  • Karen Siqueiros is a University of Oregon student from San Diego who continues work on her double majors in business and economics


mark your calendars

The Pacific Coast Chapter of PDCA has set the date of April 29, 2022 for the Annual Scholarship Shoot which raises funds to support students pursuing construction careers. Once again, the event will take place at the Bird's Landing Hunting Preserve located at 2099 Collinsville Rd, Birds Landing, CA 94512. Check back here for registration details as the event draws closer.

the pacific coast chapter of pdca 2022 scholarship program is open for your entries!

Students who live in the Pacific Coast region of the United States are invited to apply for the 2022 PDCA Pacific Coast Scholarship Award. This is a program that encourages high school seniors or college students to enroll in a course of study that will prepare them for a career in the pile driving industry. It is also a great opportunity for those students who may want to follow in the footsteps of a friend or relative who is already involved in PDCA. Student applicants be advised; you are not limited to a strict academic curriculum for construction. Your pursuit of a career in construction is crucial, but that can include safety, civil engineering, accounting and information technology (among others) which are all applicable to a pile driving company. Be sure to make your best case when you fill out the application.

Here are the details:

Mail or email your completed application to the following address:

PDCA Pacific Coast Chapter 
PO Box 97
Oakley, CA 94561

Questions? Call (925) 754-6633

Posted in Chapter News.

Pile Driving Industry Invited to 2022 S.C. Oyster Roast on Friday

Planning to attend? Have you registered? Spread the word! All friends of the driven pile industry are welcome (families too)! 

The South Carolina Chapter of PDCA invites you to attend an Oyster Roast taking place at Palmetto Pile Driving, Inc. on Friday, January 21st from 6:00 PM to 9:00 PM EST. This annual event attracts contractors, manufacturers, suppliers and civil engineers from miles around to network, eat and experience a truly unique regional tradition. If you have never attended, make 2022 the year that you join your colleagues and enjoy a unique, Friday-evening celebration of the driven pile industry.

It's a simple menu:  FREE oysters, pulled pork, hot dogs, chili, and beverages thank to the generous sponsors who include the following:

S&ME, Junttan, Koppers, Terracon, Essve Tech, ECS Carolinas, Carter Lumber, Ahern Rentals, NUCOR Skyline, ESP Associates, Pile Drivers, Inc., Wahoo Trucking, Soil Consultants, Dawley Surveying, Wire Products, Inc., Van-Smith Concrete, Palmetto Pile Driving, Inc., Cape Romain Contractors, Parker Marine Contracting, SJ Hamill Construction Corp, Consolidated Pipe and Supply, American Piledriving Equipment (APE), Equipment Corporation of America (ECA), International Construction Equipment (ICE), AMERICAN SpiralWeld Pipe, Insight Group.

For more information or to reserve your spot at the 2022 Oyster Roast, an annual event hosted by the South Carolina Chapter of PDCA, please click the button below:


Posted in Chapter News.

Gulf Coast Chapter Leads PDCA Presence at Engineering Seminar

Newly-elected President of the PDCA Gulf Coast Chapter Gerard Chenevert of GROUP Deep Foundations staffs the Chapter booth in the exhibit hall for the 2021 LCECS

The 31st Annual Louisiana Civil Engineering Conference & Show (LCECS) concluded December 8th at the Hyatt Regency in New Orleans. The event featured several inspiring and thought-provoking sessions featuring presenters from across the country who practice engineering in the private sector, government, academia and more. Engineering Affiliate members of PDCA were among those providing educational content for attendees.

Additionally, PDCA members were involved in other aspects of the LCECS. The PDCA Gulf Coast Chapter, in partnership with PDCA, hosted an informational booth in the exhibit hall. Other exhibitors included Ardaman & Associates, Atlas Tube, Baker Gulf Coast Industrial, Boh Bros. Construction, Cajun Industries, Consolidated Pipe & Supply, Eustis Engineering, Keller, Kiewit Foundations, Terracon Consultants, Tolunay-Wong Engineers, and Trinity Products.

PDCA members who served as event sponsors were Terracon, Ardaman & Associates, Eustis Engineering, Linfield, Hunter & Junius, Inc., and Premier Geotech and Testing.

Posted in Chapter News.

Cadet Milling Wins Prestigious Nigels Scholarship from SC Chapter

Charleston, SC (November 12, 2021): The South Carolina Chapter of PDCA names Cadet Richard Milling as the recipient of the prestigious "Mac" Nigels Scholarship. A sophomore student currently carrying a 4.0 grade point average at The Citadel, Milling was recognized before the audience gathered for the Chapter's fourth quarter dinner meeting on November 11th at the Town & Country Inn and Suites. Each year, the Chapter presents this scholarship to a civil engineering student from The Citadel, The Military College of South Carolina who, according to his/her professors, demonstrates "strong character, integrity and exemplary grade point average."

Mr. Milling, accompanied by Citadel Professor and PDCA member Dr. Simon Ghanat, was introduced by Scott Nigels, son of the late McLeod "Mac" Creighton Nigels. Those gathered for the event learned about Milling's impressive credentials as an accomplished student; he was warmly applauded as Nigels presented him with the award consisting of a commemorative plaque and a $2000 monetary gift. The annual scholarship dates back to 2007 and is presented in the name of "Mac" Nigels who was a highly respected civil engineer in Charleston following his 1955 graduation from The Citadel.

Also from the PDCA of South Carolina Chapter's quarterly dinner meeting on November 11th, the 2022 Slate listing the newly-elected Chapter leadership was revealed. Effective January 1, 2022 the Chapter President is John King of PileDrivers, Inc., VP is Susheel Kolwalkar of Insight Group, Secretary/Treasurer is Andrea Edwards of Koppers, and Asst. Secretary/Treasurer is Jason Moore of Palmetto Pile Driving. Directors include Jim Challenger of Consolidated Pipe & Supply, Jordan Houston of Cape Romain Contractors, Greg Canivan of S&ME, Inc., Scott Nigels of Palmetto Pile Driving, Peter Adams of Parker Marine and Simon Ghanat. 

The dinner program concluded with a rousing presentation by Ben Fanning, a best-selling author, podcaster and career coach who took a deep dive into many of the dangers employers face when their employees experience 'burnout.' The timely address keyed-in on COVID-19 pandemic-related workplace alterations which have brought negative impacts to workers in nearly every career sector. Mr. Fanning offered the group tips and advice to not only mitigate workplace burnout but also overcome the challenges from the pandemic and other root causes. The presentation included humor, audience participation and access to available resources for burnout prevention.

Posted in Chapter News.

SC Dinner Presents Burnout Prevention, Election and Scholarship Award

Don't miss the final meeting of the PDCA of South Carolina, coming Thursday November 11th at 6:30 at Town and Country Inn in Charleston. In addition to networking and social time, great dinner and industry fellowship, attendees will be treated to the following:
  • A presentation from #1 bestselling author, Ben Fanning
  • A reveal of The Citadel student who is selected as the PDCA of SC, 2022 Mac Nigels Scholarship winner
  • A Membership election for your 2022 Board of Directors.
The Board is now accepting nominations. If you're interested in serving on the PDCA of SC Board, please contact current President, Jason Moore, at 843.577.0545 or

Ever experience burnout as it relates to work? Ever had to coach a coworker or employee through a period of frustration in their career? Given the pandemic, election season, political and civil unrest, and the cyclical nature of our industry relative to all of the above, each of us has experienced some level of fatigue and burnout over the past 18 months! Please plan to join us for an engaging and energizing experience to help you avoid burnout and boost your motivation. Our speaker is #1 bestselling author, Ben Fanning:
3 Strategies You can Use to Prevent Burnout in 2022
- The Alarming Truth about COVID Fatigue and How to Avoid It.
- The One Word that Energizes and Ignites Your Career.
- A Simple Way to Use Burnout to Your Advantage.

Special thanks to keynote speaker sponsor: Insight Group

Given the ongoing health concern, we will be following all local, state, and CDC guidelines for meeting attendance and process.

$45 per person includes dinner and beverages
Thursday, November 11th @ 6:30 pm

Posted in Chapter News.

Northeast Chapter hosts 'Meet & Greet' at Top Golf


On October 6, 2021, dozens of professionals in the pile driving industry in New Jersey, New York and beyond gathered at the Edison, New Jersey TopGolf for the PDCA Northeast Chapter annual Meet & Greet event.

Chapter President Tim Fogarty addressed the members and requested their support to help build the membership of the Chapter. He also discussed upcoming Chapter programs and meetings scheduled for early 2022. F
rank Peters, PDCA Executive Director, updated attendees on news and events including the 2022 PDCA Annual Conference coming to Phoenix, Arizona in February 2022. Before the short program concluded, all those in attendance introduced themselves on the microphone to the full group. The balance of the evening involved networking, a barbeque dinner and a golf challenge. Many thanks to those who participated in this successful and fun event.
The PDCA Northeast Chapter is grateful for the generous support of the event sponsors, which included: George Harms Construction Company, Inc.ICE-International Construction Equipment USA, Consolidated Pipe and Supply Company, Inc., and M T Kaye Steel Products, LLC.

Posted in Chapter News.

Gulf Coast Chapter Hosts Dinner, Program at L'Auberge Casino in Baton Rouge

The PDCA Gulf Coast Chapter gathered for the regularly scheduled Third Quarter 2021 Membership Meeting in Baton Rouge. This is a popular event from the Chapter each year because it is held at the L'Auberge Casino Hotel on the scenic waterfront of the mighty Mississippi River.

Attendees enjoyed a social hour prior to a dinner and program. Chapter President Kirt Jackson presided over a short business meeting of the Chapter membership. PDCA Executive Director Frank Peters  attended and briefed members on news and upcoming event information for the pile driving industry. The event was sponsored by American Piledriving Equipment (APE) and Nucor Skyline. Andres Buritica, a Business Development representative from Skyline gave a short program.

PDCA thanks the Gulf Coast Chapter for continuing to provide a strong and active, local presence in Louisiana and beyond. Additionally, the Chapter has assisted PDCA in coordinating a special site visit at member company Gulf Coast Pre-Stress Partners (Pass Christian, MS) as an optional field trip during the upcoming DICEP technical conference to be held September 15-17 in New Orleans. 

The PDCA Gulf Coast Chapter has scheduled it's fourth and final meeting of 2021 for November 18th; it will take place at Messina's Restaurant in Kenner, LA. More information and registration will be available closer to the event.

PDCA E.D. Frank Peters updates Gulf Coast Chapter during Q3 meeting

Andres Buritica of Nucor Skyline presents technical program to Chapter


Posted in Chapter News.

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