After more than 4 decades in the geotechnical and environmental construction industry, Steve Day has retired. Steve began his career in 1973 after graduating from South Dakota State University, partnering with his father in their family utility and excavating company, in Sioux Falls, South Dakota. He continued his studies earning a Bachelor’s of Science in Civil Engineering from the University of Utah, while simultaneously working for Peter Kiewit & Sons. He furthered his education at the University of Texas – Austin, where he studied clay liners under the mentorship of David Daniel, eventually earning a Master’s of Science in Civil Engineering with a geotechnical engineering emphasis. In 1984, he began his employment at Geo-Con, in Pittsburgh, PA. In his 13 years with Geo-Con, he advanced from Project Engineer to Senior Vice-President and Technical Director responsible for slurry walls, soil mixing, grouting and research. In 1997, he moved to Inquip Associates as the Vice President of Marketing/Research & Development. In 2000, Steve reunited with Chris Ryan at Geo-Solutions, Inc. where they focused on providing technical assistance for specialty construction projects. Geo-Solutions eventually grew to include 5 partners, including Steve and Chris, over time transitioning from providing primarily technical assistance to full construction services. In 2012, the partners brought in a private equity group to assist with ownership transfer. Steve continued his full-time employment at Geo-Solutions through 2015 and stayed on as a consultant until February, 2016, when he officially retired.
In his long and diverse career, Steve participated in a number of innovative projects, including many “firsts”. Some of the “firsts” Steve was involved with in the US include in situ soil mixing with hot air injection, bio-polymer slurry drainage trench installations, attapulgite slurry walls, reactive barriers installed using bio-polymer slurries, and in situ soil mixing with zero valent iron. He was also instrumental in the application of US technologies to international markets, including the first application of the permeable reactive barrier technology, installed using bio-polymer slurry trenching, to contaminated sites in Italy and Australia. He was involved in technical assistance on innovative slurry wall projects in Barbados and Canada.
In addition to his project work, Steve also participated in numerous studies for the implementation of geotechnical solutions on special projects including research funded by the US EPA, US DOE, US DOD, EPRI, and numerous private industry and consulting clients.
At the time of his retirement, Steve was a recognized specialist by a variety of agencies and organizations, including:
- Slurry Trench Specialist by US Army Corp of Engineers, US Bureau of Reclamation, and US Department of Natural Resources Conservation Service
- Soil Mixing Specialist by US Department of Energy
- Permeable Treatment Wall Specialist by US NASA, EnviroMetals Technologies
- American Society of Civil Engineers (member of Geo-Institute, served on Environmental Geotechnics committee)
- American Society for Testing and Materials (served on Hydrologic Properties (standard D-5084) and Hydraulic Barriers subcommittees)
- Association of State Dam Safety Officials
- International Containment Technology (served on workshop committee, co-authored Assessment of Barriers, and lead trainer for Quality Control of Vertical Barriers)
- Technical Information Exchange of DOE (served as technology vendor representative)
Finally, throughout his career, Steve authored and co-authored more than two dozen technical papers and articles beginning with his Master’s Thesis “Field Permeability Test for Clay Liners” (1985) by ASTM, Philadelphia, PA, to “Compatibility Evaluation of Groundwater Cutoff Using Salt-Resistant Bentonite and BFS/Cement for Deep Soil Mix Barrier Wall”, (2007) Geo-Denver, Denver, CO.
Steve and his wife, Mary, reside in Highlands Ranch, CO and also spend a considerable amount of time at their second home in Princeville, HI.