Jeff Bishop, P.E., LEED Green Associate
Quality Control Manager/Director of Engineering
The team at Z6 nominated Jeff to be our first Employee Spotlight of the Month. As a quality control manager and director of engineering, he has been a valued member of the Zero/Six team since 2012.
Jeff, welcome. Tell us how you got started in engineering and the type of work you do.
I started my career with Z6 as an engineer-in-training after earning my degree in civil engineering from The University of Texas. Living and working within a mile of the Gulf of Mexico has given me a unique perspective on windstorm engineering concerns. The extreme weather conditions continually challenge my team and I to remain up to speed on the latest materials, systems, and standards. Since starting with Z6, I’ve been fortunate enough to work in a diverse set of environments that allowed me to expand my expertise into waterproofing, fenestration inspections, aided drafting, modeling, and engineering analysis. I am also a Texas Department of Insurance (TDI) qualified inspector and LEED Green Associate. Being a LEED GA demonstrated my knowledge of green building practices and standards related to the design, construction, usage, and maintenance of buildings.
I also ensure our ANAB-approved laboratory and team follow strict ISO standards to report on the integrity of building materials and products accurately and certify installed systems perform as intended.
What type of engineering background do you have?
I studied civil engineering in school, covering everything from material science and geology to soils, environmental science, and mechanics. When I graduated, I worked in underground wastewater tunneling. Unless you have done this, you would have no idea how significant a civil engineering endeavor is to move water and waste out of major cities. It was an interesting introduction to the field.
When I joined the Z6 team, it required learning about architectural engineering, and I decided to take the professional engineers exam in architectural engineering. This knowledge is key to understanding the structural, architectural, and civil engineering aspects of building envelopes.
What does it mean to be an appointed Qualified Inspector for the Texas Department of Insurance (TDI)?
Engineers with experience working on the coast can go through additional training to become an appointed qualified inspector. TDI regulates the state’s insurance industry, and through Texas Windstorm Insurance Agency (TWIA), I follow a set of codes to ensure building envelopes meet requirements to decrease potential hurricane damage. When I do a TDI windstorm review, I look at all the materials for the exterior envelope—anything that can come off a building in a windstorm. I review it for wind load and impact resistance requirements and then observe the installation to ensure the correct components are used before signing off on a project. This process enables TDI to provide insurance at a more reasonable cost to people on the coast.
What do you like most about your job, and what challenges do you face?
I like the variety of work I get to do. I’ve worked on brand new hospitals, historic churches, and everything in between. It’s always something different, and it keeps work interesting. I also enjoy working for a smaller company. It’s nice to know the people I work alongside. Billy has built a great culture at Z6. I feel like I am working with the top people in their field and that we are mentored by a leadership team who cares about us as much as our customers.
I also love challenges. They bring perspective and provide lessons in out-of-the-box thinking. There is no good replacement for experience, and with each project, I learn something new and take it to the next project. Some issues don’t have textbook solutions, or we come across new problems where critical thinking and creativity are needed to solve them. It’s those challenges that keep me engaged.
Why is it essential to have an ISO accredited lab?
Before accreditation, our testing team was outstanding and followed a process, but an ISO accreditation was the next step to achieving a high level, professional testing service. It ensures equipment is working correctly and calibrated, and maintained correctly so that testing results are dependable and accurate. ISO accreditation helps set testing standards, providing data consistency and giving our clients confidence in our services. We are a certified ANAB-approved laboratory, which serves as an additional level of confidence to our customers.
What is a memorable and unique project you worked on with Z6?
The coolest project I have worked on is the St. Mary Cathedral Basilica. It is a historical building built in 1848 that posed a lot of unique challenges and hands-on involvement. I got to climb in the tower, crawlspace, and bell tower and design a unique conical roof system. Our team also restored the bell to be run electronically, which was cool because had not worked in a long time. Working on the bell was special because we got to collaborate with the company that installed the bell to understand the original design better. We did several uncommon repairs on the church, and I am proud to have been on the team. I will probably not come across another project as delicate and intricate as this one.
Thank you, Jeff. We appreciate your time today.