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Top 100 : 2006
100 TOP Wilke believes in fostering a strong inter- nal culture of performance and innovation, in partnership with clients and has played a significant role in developing project alliances. A civil engineer with a masters degree from the Queensland Institute of Technology, Wilke’s career with PB spans more than 20 years. This period included a decade as PB’s Queensland state manager, during which time the firm grew from 40 to 200 staff. His main interests are global travel and nurturing his children and grandchildren. Robert Squire, 59 CEO, Connell Wagner, Melbourne In the six years since Robert Squire became chief executive of Connell Wagner, the firm has increased its turnover by 93% (from $152 million in 1999/2000 to $292 million in 2004/2005). In that time staff numbers have increased from 1565 to 2500. Squire makes a point of visiting all the firm’s 45 offices in Australia, New Zealand and Asia at least once a year and likes to meet all staff members personally. However, he admits it “is now much more difficult for me to have personal contact, which is something I miss”. Squire puts a lot of emphasis on graduate recruitment and staff development. Under his leadership the firm has committed to having 5% of its staff numbers as fresh graduates. Squire holds an honours degree in me- chanical engineering from the University of NSW. His main interests outside of work and family are bridge, golf, thoroughbred horse breeding and motorcycling. Des Whybird, 54 CEO of GHD, Brisbane “We have continued to invest in the development of GHD and our people over the past year, with 25% growth across the business. The development of the GHD Business 40 ENGINEERS AUSTRALIA JUNE 2006 39-43 g - consult academ 40 6/1/06, 8:32 PM School has been a highlight, further strengthening our graduate development program, with more than 200 graduates joining us in 2006,” Des Whybird told Engineers Australia magazine. A civil engineering honours graduate from the University of Queensland, Whybird has more than three decades experience in the design and management of transportation and water infrastructure projects as well as building and tourism developments. Prior to his appointment as CEO of GHD in November 2003, he was General Manager Australia and earlier, the firm’s Brisbane Operating Centre Manager. He is also a committee member of Brisbane’s Tattersall’s Club, was formerly the inaugural president of Somerville House Junior School Support Group and was actively involved with the Cairns regional group of Engineers Australia. GHD has more than 4000 staff at offices throughout Australia, New Zealand and has 16 overseas offices in the Middle East, Asia and the Americas. The firm’s turnover increased by 28% to $400 million in 2004/2005. Geoff Peattie, 60 Vice-President Asia Pacific, Government & Infrastructure, KBR, Sydney Geoff Peattie is responsible for KBR’s 1350 staff in Australia as well as the firm’s government and infrastructure business in the Asia Pacific region. This encom-passes defence con-tracting to the Austra-lian federal government, as well as infrastructure engineering and construction services to the public and private sectors. He has led the reestablishment of KBR’s minerals business in Asia Pacific since 2002. KBR is one of the world’s largest engineer- ing, construction and services companies. It employs 60,000 people in 43 countries and is the engineering and construction arm of Halliburton, a global provider of energy services. A mechanical engineer, Peattie initially trained as an engineering cadet with BHP in Newcastle, completing his engineering degree at Newcastle University. He joined the former consultant Kinhill from BHP in 1994 and held a number of key positions with that firm before it was absorbed by KBR in the late 1990s. His main relaxations include fishing and horse racing. John Grill, 60 CEO of WorleyParsons, Sydney Civil engineer John Grill joined Esso Australia in 1968 and in 1971 became chief executive of Wholohan Grill and Partners. Wholohan Grill acquired Worley Engineering in Australia in 1987. Following restructuring, in 2002 the Worley Group listed on the Australian Stock Exchange. In 2004 it acquired Parsons E&C Corporation, a US-based global project services company, and changed its name to WorleyParsons. Currently benefiting strongly from the re- sources boom, (revenue grew from $373 million in 2003/2004 to more than $1.2 billion in 2004/2005) WorleyParsons has expertise in engineering and project management services, hydrocarbon projects, infrastructure and minerals and power. WorleyParsons currently has 13,500 staff. “At a time of historically high activity the company has increased its ability to support major projects and asset services in both the upstream and downstream markets,” Grill said recently. Grill is an honours graduate from Sydney University. He also holds a science degree from the same university. Nigel Robinson, 52 CEO of Maunsell and Aecom Australia, New Zealand, Asia, Middle East Group, Brisbane As well as being CEO of Maunsell, civil engineer Nigel Robinson is also a board member of Aecom, Maunsell’s parent comp any. Aecom employs 24,000 staff worldwide. consulting