- Written by: Tom Faunce
- Produced by: Sean O'Reilly
- Estimated reading time: 4 mins
Serving western Colorado communities for nearly 30 years as a multidisciplinary engineering, surveying and consulting business, SGM’s philosophy is to serve as a partner to its clients while contributing to their success. Providing a wide suite of services, SGM works in water, wastewater, private development, transportation, structures and surveying. The diversity of the company has proven to be one of SGM’s key factors to success. “You have to be diversified, both technically and geographically, in order to withstand the cyclical nature of our business,” says Louis Meyer, president and CEO of SGM.
Founded in 1986 by Dean Gordon and Louis Meyer, SGM began with 15 employees and has now developed into a leading engineering firm of Colorado’s Western Slope. The co-founders bring more than 65 years of combined engineering experience to the company, which now maintains a staff of more than 95 people. SGM is a full-spectrum engineering firm, encompassing core, traditional civil engineering services as well as complementary services such as energy, mechanical/electrical/plumbing, and GIS mapping capabilities. “There are some niche aspects that we will collaborate with some other firms on,” says Meyer. “Usually it’s planning work such as landscape architecture.”
People make the company
The quality of SGM’s employees has fostered the company’s ability to grow, even through tough economic times. “We came out of the recession stronger than when we entered,” recounts Meyer. “Our business is all about our people. If you can attract good people and give them a strong sense of purpose, then you will do just fine.” Many employees have been with SGM since the inception of the company.
While headquartered in Glenwood Springs, Colorado, SGM has six additional branch offices throughout western Colorado. As a company that concerns itself with improving the quality of life in the communities it serves, SGM is involved in numerous nonprofit endeavors such as the Middle Colorado Watershed Council, Western Rivers Institute and the Aspen Valley Land Trust. In September 2014, the company took part in a Habitat for Humanity project in which SGM associates volunteered their time and services, working alongside other volunteers to make a local resident’s dream of becoming a homeowner a reality. SGM also awards up to four scholarships every year to assist aspiring civil engineers in the pursuit of their studies.
SGM recently contributed to Colorado’s first ever statewide water plan through its leadership in creating the Colorado River Basin Implementation Plan. The plan will be accomplished through collaboration with seven Basin Roundtables, local governments, water providers and other stakeholders, and provides strategies, policies and actions by which Colorado will address its projected future needs in a consistent manner. “It will actually guide the state’s water planning efforts over the next 40 years,” Meyer explains.
SGM has gained recognition for the work it performs. In 2015, the company received the Colorado Companies to Watch Award. This honor is given annually to high-performing, second-stage companies that develop valuable products and services, enrich communities and create new industries throughout Colorado. With over 1,200 applicants, SGM was one of only 50 Colorado companies to receive the award. “We were very honored to be recognized for our growth, culture and influence on our industry,” says Meyer. “The award was a reflection of the grassroots contributions, dedication, work ethic and creativity of our entire staff.”
A community-oriented company
The fact that SGM has served as the town engineer for several communities for nearly 30 years is what gives Meyer the biggest sense of pride about his company. “I think that really speaks volumes about our abilities and who we are,” he elaborates. “We actually act as the staff engineer for these communities, so it’s great to realize that we have been so well-known throughout western Colorado and have been solving problems for the communities that our families, friends and neighbors work and live in.”
Building upon its 30 years in business, Meyer foresees his company continuing to grow and expand its markets. Over the last seven years, SGM has witnessed a significant increase in the demand for its services. With the degradation of local infrastructure, SGM is working with a number of municipalities and special districts to perform geographic information systems (GIS) mapping and provide asset management.
“I also think there will be a heavy emphasis on addressing a dwindling water supply to meet growing demand, as well as providing multi-modal traffic solutions as opposed to traditional expansion of vehicular infrastructure in our narrow and constricted mountain valleys,” says Meyer. “We see a very bright future.” While the firm continues to solve logistical issues for the communities it serves, SGM will remain the leading civil engineering firm of western Colorado.
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