BOARD OF DIRECTORS
Spencer Wiggins Bio
Spencer Wiggins is a Senior Vice President of Commercial Banking at Hancock Whitney Bank. He has been with the bank since 2003 and has held positions in retail banking, business banking, and commercial banking. Spencer holds a B.S.B.A. (graduated cum laude) in Finance / Banking and Depository Institutions from the University of South Alabama where he was also a member of the Jaguar baseball team. Spencer is the team captain for Hancock Whitney Bank’s Chamber Chase team, member of the Mobile Section of Associated General Contractors, member of the Construction Leadership Council, board member of Southern Development Council, previous board member of the Alabama Leadership Bankers, and former United Way loan executive. Spencer has also been an assistant varsity baseball coach at Bayside Academy and the head middle school baseball coach at St. Paul’s.
David Scheid Bio
David Scheid is an experienced Human Resource professional with over 30 years of experience primarily in the manufacturing industry. Prior to joining Outokumpu Stainless USA, f/k/a ThyssenKrupp Stainless USA, in 2007 as the Vice President of Human Resources, David worked for North American Stainless in Ghent, KY on their Greenfield startup. David has also worked in the automotive industry with UBE Industries as well as Avon Products in the Cincinnati, Ohio area. He has worked with multinational corporations from Japan, Spain and Germany assisting in building new manufacturing operations in the US and Canada. David earned his undergraduate degree in Business with a double major in Marketing and Management and his Master’s degree in Labor and Employment Relations from the University of Cincinnati. He has served on boards including various Chambers’ of Commerce and workforce development. He has worked with the Big Brothers program as well as Junior Achievement. Currently, he sits on the Executive Committee of SAWDC. He has been married to Susan Scheid for the past 30 years and has 3 daughters.
Steve Stewart Bio
Steve Stewart is Project Director at SCS Engineers, Inc and is responsible for project development, key client account manager, and business development. He is a Registered Professional Engineer and Project Manager Professional and has been responsible for strategic site selection and due diligence on multiple high profile projects including site development, permitting, construction, and commissioning activities. He has spent over 22 years in the Engineering, Environmental, and Consulting before joining SCS Engineers. He is a native Mobilian, graduating with a B.S. in Civil Engineering in 1999 from the University of South Alabama. In 2009, Mr. Stewart was selected as the Mobile Area’s Young Engineer of the Year and also the Young Engineer of the Year by the Alabama State Society of Professional Engineers. He is married to Angela Stewart for 21 years having three daughters, the oldest is a registered nurse, the middle an architecture student, and youngest is a dance student. Steve is an active member at Eastern Shore Baptist Church.
Judith Adams Bio
Judith Adams is Vice President of Marketing for the Alabama State Port Authority. Her areas of responsibility include media, community and government affairs, real estate/asset management, and Theodore terminal operations. She is also responsible for economic development initiatives at the Port Authority, participating on project teams that successfully recruited Aker Solutions ASA, Standard Concrete Products, Berg Spiral Pipe Corp., and ThyssenKrupp. Ms. Adams serves on the Board of Directors and the Executive Committee of the National Waterways Conference. In addition to her board service for PEP, Ms. Adams serves on the Board of Directors of the Alabama Germany Partnership and the Coosa Alabama River Improvement Association. Ms. Adams is a past chair of the American Association of Port Authorities Public Relations Committee. She is a member of the Economic Development Association of Alabama, the Southern Economic Development Council, Leadership Alabama, and the Public Relations Council of Alabama. Ms. Adams is a graduate of Louisiana State University.
Cal Adkins Bio
Calvin ‘Cal’ Adkins is the General Manager of Engineering, Environmental and Maintenance at AM/NS Calvert. He oversees the site capital work from conception to implementation while also supporting the operations, field execution and plant maintenance teams. Cal has a Bachelor of Science in Nuclear Engineering from Thomas Edison State University as well as an MBA from William Woods University. Throughout his career, he has held leadership positions for IPSCO, Tenaris, Bridgestone Americas, Nissan and many other nationally recognized companies. Cal and his wife Tammy live in Kennett, MO with their two children. In his free time, Cal enjoys golfing and basketball.
Lewis Copeland Bio
Lewis Copeland is the Executive Vice President and Mobile Branch Manager of Southern Earth Sciences, Inc. where he serves on the Board of Directors. He is a Registered Professional Engineer in Alabama, Louisiana, Mississippi, and Florida. Lewis is a native of Mobile and began his career with SESI in 1991 after obtaining his B.S. in Civil Engineering from the University of South Alabama where he was President of Pi Kappa Phi Fraternity. He has previously held positions as Staff Geotechnical Engineer, Drilling Department Manager and Material Testing Department Manager. He is a member of ASCE, ASPE, ACEC and AGC.
Tom Damson Bio
Tom Damson is a principle and past president of Long’s Human Resource Services and was born and raised in Mobile. A graduate of the University of Alabama, he is also a Certified Personnel Consultant. A retired Army Aviator and Vietnam veteran, he formerly served on various community boards including the Boys and Girls Club, Boy Scouts, BBB, Mitchell School of Business advisory board, Mobile Chamber of Commerce, is a past president of PEP, and currently serves on the executive committees of Temporary Services Insurance Limited and the Captive Investors Fund which are Cayman domiciled companies.
Bill Daniels Bio
Bill Daniels is an AV rated attorney with significant experience in all aspects of corporate representation with a strong focus in construction, economic development, project delivery, environmental, and government contracting. He represents a significant percentage of the manufacturing and construction industry in the Mobile area. An avid oyster farmer, he understands the importance of preserving natural resources in a responsible and reasonable manner. A retired military officer, he has also served in a variety of demanding and diverse assignments including serving as the Staff Judge Advocate for the Special Operations Joint Task Force – Operation Inherent Resolve (the Counter-ISIS mission) while stationed in the Middle East.
Avalisha Fisher Bio
Avalisha is the sole owner and President of Driven Engineering, Inc., a civil engineering, environmental consulting and land planning firm. She has worked in the civil engineering field since 1989 in the Mobile and Baldwin County area. Avalisha was raised in Fairhope, Alabama and graduated from Fairhope High School. Avalisha graduated from the University of South Alabama with a Cum Laude B.S. in Civil Engineering. She is a member of Tau Beta Pi, the engineering honor society, and AREMA. She serves on two AREMA committees that are constantly updating the AREMA manuals that govern the construction and operation of rail facilities across the US.
Corey Fountain Bio
Corey Fountain is the Southeast Regional Estimating and Proposal Manager with Performance Contractors, Inc. A native of Mobile, Corey is a graduate of St. Paul’s Episcopal School and holds a B.S. degree in Accounting from the University of Mobile where he was also a 2-time Team Captain on the baseball team. He joined Performance Contractors upon graduation and has served in a variety of roles to serve the steel, chemical, pulp and paper, petrochemical, auto, and power needs throughout the US. Corey’s tenure has seen him contribute to the expansion of Performance Contractor’s influence from coast to coast and throughout the Midwest. Corey enjoys being outdoors and playing golf. He and his wife Kaitlin have two children, Cade (3) and Kennedy (5).
Hayden Olds Bio
Hayden Olds is President of Olds Filtration, a distributor of industrial filtration products and air pollution control systems. Hayden is a graduate of Fairhope High School and earned his B.A. in Business Management from Huntingdon College in 1990. He joined the family business soon after graduation. A lifelong resident of Baldwin County, Hayden and his wife, Felicia, reside in Fairhope with their two children. An avid outdoorsman, Hayden serves as a volunteer and supports various coastal and wildlife conservation organizations.
Allan Gustin Bio
Allan Gustin holds a B.S. from the University of Southern Mississippi in Building Construction Technology (1989). With over thirty years of experience in various types of general contracting including design-build, manufacturing, industrial, health care, institutional, retail, multi-family, and high rise residential. Allan is a past president and current board member of the Partners for Environmental Progress, and currently serves as an officer and board of directors member for the Associated General Contractors of Alabama Mobile Section. Allan also served as Past President of the Associated Builders and Contractors Mid-Gulf Chapter.
George Hunter Bio
George Hunter works in Marketing, Sales and Business Development for Spire, formerly known as Mobile Gas. Throughout his career at Spire, he has had the opportunity to work in several segments of the market including residential, commercial and industrial. He has a Bachelor of Science degree in Marketing and Business Administration from Troy University as well as an MBA from the Louisiana State University of Shreveport. For the last 20 years, George has served as a Life Skills Instructor at the Alabama Safety Institute. He also finds time to volunteer and give back to the community by working with organizations such as United Way, 100 Black Men, Habitat for Humanity, Mobile Chamber Chase and Camp Rap-A-Hope. He has served on several boards including Dearborn YMCA, Keep Mobile Beautiful, Prichard Chamber of Commerce, Housing First and is currently active with the Mobile Public Library. He and his wife Michelle live in Mobile, AL with their three sons – Don, Cameron and Justin.
Ritchie R. Hurt Bio
As Manager of Business development for Thompson Engineering and Watermark Design Group since 2002, Ritchie is active in all aspects of new business development, as well as the entire process surrounding project development and long-term client relationships. Daily activities include any number of internal and external duties related to supporting and increasing the visibility of Thompson Engineering and Watermark Design Group.
Ritchie is a graduate of the University of Montevallo and a graduate of The Economic Development Institute. Professional associations he is a member of include the Economic Development Association of Alabama (EDAA), Manufacture Alabama, Japan America Society of Alabama (JASA), Association of Builders and Contractors (ABC), Association of General Contractors (AGC), Mobile Area Chamber of Commerce, and the Baldwin County Economic Development Alliance.
He has also served as a Board member for Junior Achievement, BBVA Bank Business Development Board member, Camping Committee Chairman for the Boy Scouts, Member of the Mobile County Republic Executive Committee, Workforce Strategic Planning Committee and a graduate of Leadership Mobile, Class of 1997.
Ritchie and his wife, Ashley Rich Hurt, have two children, Ryan (19) who is serving our country in the United States Air Force and Madelyn (16).
Neil Johnston Bio
Neil C. Johnston (Sr.) is a Member in the Mobile, Alabama office of Hand Arendall Harrison Sale LLC, in the Real Estate, Land Use and Timber Practice Group. Neil is a graduate of Southwestern at Memphis (Rhodes College) (1975), the University of Alabama School of Law (1978 – Roll Tide), and attended University College, Oxford, England. Neil works with clients regarding the legal and practicable solutions to issues; the recreational and commercial use and misuse of sUAVs (and the proper way to shoot a drone . . . with consequences), as well as contracts and policies; the acquisition, need and conservation of “Liquid Real Estate . . . No Water – No Development;” title, permitting and compliance matters (including environmental and natural resources development, extraction and production); surface and subsurface uses, leases, and easements; and coastal, riparian and submerged land issues affecting ownership, use, development and redevelopment. Water, wetlands, timber, endangered species, oysters, turkeys, sUAVs, cane poles and crickets are constant companions. Neil practices law where he practices life . . . and has fun doing so, sharing and discovering everyday miracles of our coastal environment. Prior to joining PEP’s Board of Directors, Neil received PEP’s Community Partner Award in 2009.
Jess Lane Bio
A valve industry expert with twenty eight successful years of sales and service, Jess Lane is now adding Business Development / Sales Manager to his repertoire to continue to flourish and foster past and present relationships, and to aid in the inevitable success of Industrial Valve.
Although Jess has only been with IVS going on five years, he has earned the respect of his peers by serving five years on his tools as a Valve Technician and by quickly moving into a sales position for the past twenty three years. Jess has maintained his integrity with managing and coordinating field service jobs, purchasing and ordering parts and materials, billing and invoicing jobs, office management, budgeting and as a shop supervisor who always kept the company first and his consumers best interest in mind.
Jess understands and recognizes the capabilities of IVS and the technicians, who aid in the success of IVS as well, and what that means for the future of IVS and selling a service. Knowledge is key, and to obtain the key we must thrive for continuous education and training to better hone our skills, keep IVS on the forefront and provide quality service to our clients.
Jennifer Tremayne Bio
Jennifer joined the Mobile Chamber’s Economic Development team as Existing Industry Manager in 2022. Her role is to connect local businesses to the resources and support they need to succeed and to help advance new opportunities for business growth. She represents the Chamber on several community advisory boards and industry councils. A Certified Economic Development Finance Professional, Jennifer has nearly 20 years of experience in Economic Development encouraging job growth and investment. She is a Mobile native and holds a B.A. from Birmingham-Southern College. In her free time, she is a volunteer Board member for the Village of Spring Hill and enjoys making her neighborhood and community a better place. She is married to her husband, Richard, and has two young adult stepsons.
Connie Buskness Bio
Connie Buskness is the Director of Environmental, Health, Safety, Security and Quality for North America Technology and Infrastructure at Evonik. In this role, she is responsible for supporting Evonik’s largest site in North America, located in Mobile, as well as operating the Center of Excellence for EHSSQ services to support more than 40 Evonik sites across the continent. Connie holds a Bachelor of Science in Chemical Engineering from Texas A&M University as well as an MBA from Pepperdine University Graziadio School of Business. A Texas native, she has been in the manufacturing and chemical industry for more than 20 years. Connie and her husband Eric live in Mobile, AL with their two teenage daughters. They enjoy spending their time off enjoying the great outdoors and beaches in Coastal Alabama.
Michael 'Gene' Rader Bio
Michael Rader, before being recently promoted to Safety, Health and Environmental Manager has been employed at Mitsubishi Polysilicon since 2010 as the Safety, Health and Environmental Specialist.
Michael previously owned a consulting/training service providing OSHA, EPA, HazMat, Rescue, and EMT training in the industrial environment, for both local companies as well as in countries such as Russia, Oman, Qatar, Philippines, and Vietnam. He has held the role of Safety Manager with multiple companies in Mobile County and South Mississippi.
David Rogers Bio
David serves on the site leadership team as the Director of Environmental, Health and Safety (EHS) for the Airbus U.S. Manufacturing Facility located in Mobile, Alabama. He is responsible for the management and direction of the site’s environmental, safety, and occupational health systems as well as workers’ compensation, emergency response, and EHS continuous improvement initiatives.
In addition to the aviation industry, David has been actively involved with developing and implementing EHS programs in construction as well as various other manufacturing facilities across the southeast. He has proven experience working with ADEM, EPA, OSHA, MSHA, DOT, and FDA. Prior to joining Airbus, David was the Safety Manager for the LafargeHolcim cement manufacturing facility located in Theodore, AL. He led the safety/security program and was the interface for the site with the Mining Safety and Health Administration.
Along with Partners for Environmental Progress, David serves as the 2020-2021 Campaign Cabinet Industrial Sector Chair for the United Way of Southwest Alabama and is an active member within the American Society of Safety Professionals. He holds a bachelor’s degree, graduate certificate in Environmental, Health, and Safety Management, and master’s degree from the University of Alabama. David was raised in Mobile, AL, and currently resides in Fairhope, AL with his wife Brittney and their two young sons.
Allen Simpson Bio
Allen Simpson serves as Division Operations Leader for Hargrove’s Mobile Division, responsible for the leadership and performance of nearly 400 Teammates. With over 33 years of experience as an engineering and manufacturing professional, Simpson possesses multi-functional experience in leading and managing projects, maintenance, and operations across a wide range of asset technologies and organizational structures.
Prior to joining the Hargrove Team in 2009, he served in multiple technical and leadership roles across the southeastern US for Kimberly-Clark Corporation. Additionally, he serves on the board for the Gulf Coast Exploreum Science Center.
Allen and his wife Laurie moved to the Eastern Shore in 2001 where they raised their three sons. The Simpsons currently reside in Spanish Fort. A native of Central Florida and after several years in the Memphis area, he attended and received his Mechanical Engineering Degree from Mississippi State University.
With over 2,200 Teammates nation-wide, Hargrove is a full-service project execution firm headquartered in downtown Mobile with expertise ranging from conceptual engineering through commissioning and ongoing operations. The company serves their energy and process industrial clients with project management, multi discipline engineering, procurement, construction management, controls and automation system integration, startup support, and industrial hygiene, as well as providing site-based teams.
Dr. John Steadman Bio
John W. Steadman, Dean of Engineering at the University of South Alabama, is a native of Cody, Wyoming and graduated from the University of Wyoming with a B.S. in 1964 and an M.S. in 1966 in Electrical Engineering. After obtaining his M.S. degree, Dr. Steadman was employed by General Dynamics in San Diego, working on astronaut life support systems as a life sciences research engineer. He received a Ph.D. from Colorado State University in 1971 and joined the faculty at UW. Dr. Steadman was a Distinguished Visiting Professor at the United States Air Force Academy in 1997-98. He served as Head of the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering and Associate Dean of Engineering at UW. A licensed professional engineer, Dr. Steadman served sixteen years on Wyoming’s State Board of Registration for Professional Engineers and Professional Land Surveyors at the request of three different governors. At the national level, Dr. Steadman has risen to positions of leadership of the National Council for Examiners for Engineering and Surveying (President – 1993), the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers – USA (President – 2004), the Order of the Engineer (Chairman – 2002-2003), and the Accrediting Board for Engineering and Technology (Team Chair – 1996-2002). Technology (Team Chair – 1996-2002). Locally, John serves on the boards for The Exploreum and Alabama School of Math and Science. He recently served the Mobile Area Chamber of Commerce as Vice Chairman for Economic Development.
Beth Thomas Bio
Beth Thomas is External Affairs Manager with Alabama Power. She joined the Southern Company in 1990 and has worked in various roles within Public Relations and External Affairs at Southern Company and Alabama Power. Beth has been in her current role since 2011. In Mobile, she serves on the Board of Directors for the United Way of Southwest Alabama, the Mobile Bay National Estuary Program, Distinguished Young Women and the VIA Senior Center. Beth holds a double major from Troy University in Journalism and Public Relations.
Clay Turner Bio
Clay Turner serves as the Senior Environmental Engineer for Ranger Environmental Services, LLC, headquatered in Mobile, AL. Contributing to the growth of Ranger Environmental , Clay successfully diversified the company’s market into the industrial, maritime and construction sectors. He is a graduate of UMS-Wright Preparatory School and the University of Alabama with a B.S. in Civil and Environmental Engineering. During his time at the University of Alabama, he was an accomplished athlete on the men’s Collegite Rowing Team. Prior to Ranger Environmental, Clay worked for Mercedes-Benz US International Assembly Plant in Vance, AL where he was tasked with the implementation of several environmental initiatives. He currently serves on the YCF Steering Committee for the Associated General Contractors. A Mobile native, Clay is married to Ms. Madeline Chesnard of Atlanta, Ga. The Turners reside in Fairhope, AL.
Mike Wilson Bio
Mike Wilson is the Engineering Manager at BASF in McIntosh, AL where he has worked for the past 35 years in both Engineering and Maintenance along with other special assignments. This includes a 3-year role as Engineering Manager at the BASF site in Lampertheim, Germany. He has a degree in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Alabama. Mike is a native of Mobile and is married with 2 daughters and likes to fish and play golf. He is on the Board of Directors of Jubilee BEST Robotics and helps organize the annual competition that introduces students through High School to the Engineering, Science and Technical fields as part of workforce development.