Kevin LaMalva Awarded Distinction of 2017 ENR Newsmaker for His Pioneering Work in Structural Fire Engineering

January 19, 2018
ENR Newsmaker

Engineering News-Record (ENR) has named Simpson Gumpertz & Heger’s (SGH’s) Kevin LaMalva to its latest class of ENR Newsmakers, recognizing him for advancing the practice of performance-based structural fire engineering (PBSFE). The annual Top Newsmakers listing acknowledges individuals who have served the “best interests of the construction industry and the public” from the prior year, as chosen by ENR’s editors.

In the Newsmaker feature, “Fanning the Flames for Structural Fire Engineering,” ENR highlights Kevin’s efforts with the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) to standardize and provide engineering guidance for fire loads on structures. He led a team in creating ASCE’s first PBSFE manual of practice and also coauthored the recently adopted Appendix E in the structural design standard ASCE/SEI 7 – Minimum Design Loads and Associated Criteria for Buildings and Other Structures.

“Kevin is bringing a lot of energy” to these efforts, said Therese McAllister, coauthor of Appendix E and current community resilience group leader for the National Institute of Standards and Technology. “He designs; understands analysis, codes, and practice; participates in organizations; and listens to all sides to reach consensus … It’s a nice balance.”

Both Appendix E and the manual of practice, scheduled for publication later this year, will serve as resources for structural engineers and further legitimize the practice of PBSFE, which is widely practiced in Europe but is still gaining traction in the United States. 

“It is an honor to be named along with such a well-accomplished group of Newsmakers,” said Kevin. “I’m excited to help promote the efforts of all of my peers and collaborators in the fire safety and structural engineering industries. I am hopeful structural engineers will continue to realize how structural fire protection represents a tremendous opportunity to provide value-added services to project stakeholders.”

Read the ENR feature.