The “go-to” guy for difficult designs within Aerospace & Defense, Eriks Jekabsons is the winner of the 2018 Professional Practitioner of the Year award.
In his four years with RS&H, Eriks has proven himself a resource for his colleagues, providing a high level of insight on structural design aspects. Beyond that, he is well-respected among clients, from governmental agencies to commercial space companies.
“The list of ‘Launch Facilities’ clients which Eriks has supported throughout this past year reads like a complete listing of the agencies and companies currently leading the way in U.S. launch site innovation and the return of manned launch from U.S. sites,” said nominator Chris Young.
Eriks’ success can be attributed partly to his ability to multitask, added Chris.
“Eriks has expertly balanced the requirements of his various supported clients and their expectations by switching hats to different design projects or construction projects very quickly and without confusion,” said Chris.
Even with that expert turnover, Eriks focuses on the details, a design outlook he lives by.
“There are times that, due to schedule pressures, you just want to gloss over things to get it done, but in the end, it’ll come back and bite you,” said Eriks. “In the long run, it’s worth the extra time.”
Eriks said he was pleasantly surprised when he heard he had won the award.
“It means a lot – feels like a validation of the effort that I’ve put in,” said Eriks. “It’s always nice to be appreciated.”
That appreciation goes both ways, says Eriks.
“I’ve worked other places that have been much less concerned about the associates than RS&H,” said Eriks. “RS&H is more engaged with the associates and offers more opportunities for recognition and advancement.”
Working at RS&H also translates into work on complex, important projects. Eriks deals with support equipment for space launches, focusing on the facilities on the ground that help get projects into space. That means his perspective is a little different than the average person’s on launch day.
“Everyone else looks at the rocket going up; I’m looking at the tower sitting on the pad, making sure it did its job” said Eriks.
But, he says, that feeling of awe and pride that goes with seeing abstract designs turn into rocketing realities? That’s just the same.
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