Brian Pawula, PE, PMP

Horner & Shifrin | Assistant Regional Manager – Transportation


What is your current or most recent position held on the Illinois Section board?

Presently, I hold a position as the Region 3 representative on the national Leader Training Committee (LTC).  Comprising a member from each of the ten regions, this committee plays a crucial role in organizing and providing leader training for Society leaders globally.  My tenure started in February 2022, and I will dedicate a minimum of three years, but I’m anticipating longer like several preceding LTC members who have extended their time.


What ASCE positions have you held in the past, including any technical groups and committees?

My heartfelt appreciation goes to the Illinois Section, which has played a pivotal role in propelling me towards the Leadership Training Committee (LTC).  My journey started with the Section’s Transportation & Development Institute (T&DI), marking nearly 8 years of dedicated involvement.  This extensive commitment equipped me with the skills and knowledge necessary for subsequent engagement within the Section, where I held all major roles over the course of 9 years.  Serving as President followed by Past President, my terms concluded in September 2021 and September 2022, respectively.


Are there any other professional associations or organizations that you have been involved with?

ASCE holds immense significance in shaping both my professional identity and personal life.  The substantial amount of time I’ve devoted to ASCE has left little room for involvement in other organizations.  While I do participate in meetings for ACEC, APWA, IAHE, IRTBA, and several councils of government, I intentionally maintain a non-committal stance towards them, at least for the time being.


What has been your most rewarding moment or contribution to the Civil Engineering profession?

The most challenging and rewarding endeavor in my career was a streetscape project undertaken for a municipality in Chicagoland.  It posed a significant trial for myself, my family, the design team, and the client.  However, the rewards included strengthened bonds with those people and multiple prestigious awards, some being competitive.  Commemorating the success of that project, the accolades it garnered, and the profound relationships it forged serves as a constant reminder that as engineers, we should actively seek moments to acknowledge and appreciate our achievements.


What is your favorite thing to do in your free time, when you’re not working or volunteering for ASCE and other organizations?

I love getting into mischief with my four young boys.  We take advantage of our big backyard to run, jump, dig, build, and even entertain reptiles (see the picture above).  Equally significant are those precious moments when my wife and I find time to savor a meal, run errands, or catch a show together.


What is one piece of advice you would give to Student or Younger Members as they start their careers in civil engineering?

ASCE has bestowed upon me numerous opportunities and opened countless doors, yet I was not really immersed until four or five years into my professional career.  Reflecting on this, I often contemplate where I might be now if I had initiated this involvement during my college years.  This minor regret has become a consistent piece of advice I share with protégés, students, and younger members: embark on volunteering early and actively seek out leadership roles to shape your professional trajectory.


With 21 years of experience in the industry, Brian currently serves as the Assistant Regional Manager of Transportation at Horner & Shifrin, Inc. in Chicago.  In this role, he offers strategic, operational, and technical leadership while playing a key role in the development and assessment of corporate goals.  Brian’s primary focus lies in planning and designing engineering projects, with a special emphasis on the transportation sector.  He enjoys engaging with young engineers through mentor-protégé programs, participating in recruitment and university visits, facilitating cross-training across disciplines, and organizing social events with colleagues to briefly escape from the demands of the profession.

If you know someone from within the Illinois Section that you feel is deserving of the spotlight, please send any suggestions to Tom Borges, Membership Chair, at