Defeating recession and cancer!
CFL woman-owned business celebrates 10 years of growth
ORLANDO, FL, 2022 – American Environmental Consulting (AEC) is celebrating 10 years of growth despite launching on the heels of the US’ “Great Recession” and a diagnosis of breast cancer.
AEC’s President, Ms. Kelly Eger-Smith, says, “My timing of 2012 probably couldn’t have been worse as the “Great Recession” shut down private sector development and hit my previous employer like a ton of bricks…our work in Central Florida came to a screeching halt!” Ms. Eger-Smith was a managing principal and partner of a Florida-based multi-service engineering and survey firm whose primary market was private sector land development. Undeterred by the economic fallout hitting Florida, and an unexpected breast cancer diagnosis, Kelly was determined to pursue her personal passion for environmental science.
Armed with a degree in Biology from George Mason University (1990), years of corporate management experience, and hands-on project management for hundreds of environmental studies and assessments, Kelly incorporated American Environmental Consulting (AEC) in the Summer of 2012. Having been active in professional associations throughout her career, Kelly tapped into a network of real estate professionals stating, “I had the immediate support of people I’d networked with in organizations such as, Commercial Real Estate Women (CREW), Urban Land Institute (ULI), The Greater Orlando Builders Association (GOBA), Advancing Women in Transportation (WTS) and many more. There was definite comradery and perseverance as we were all looking for projects to work on!”
Over the past 10 years, AEC has continued to increase revenues at an exciting pace of 50% year-over-year. Boasting an impressive list of public and private clients, AEC also continues to enjoy a 100% repeat client and referral business.
Adding to AEC’s success, in 2017 Mr. Derek Smith joined the firm as a Senior Environmental Scientist. Derek started his career as an environmental laboratory chemist at PBS&J (now Atkins) and was part of the emergency response and hazardous materials team. He later transferred to the firm’s Florida Turnpike Division as a member of the Right-of-Way team. From 2007 to 2016, Derek transitioned into a real estate career working with local and international developers to identify sites for both residential and commercial development. At AEC, Derek manages multiple technical services, including environmental sampling, data review, research, property inspections, report preparation, subcontractor oversight, and client interaction.
Bolstered by the support she received early in her career, Kelly has practiced giving back to the community through service on professional association boards and mentoring opportunities. She is a passionate advocate of mentoring young women to consider a science career and is an active member and mentor of WTS (Advancing Women in Transportation). Kelly is also a sought after speaker on environmental issues pertaining to land development and has been a speaker for the past 13 years at the annual Florida Chamber Environmental Permitting Summer School conference.
As Kelly celebrates the 10 year anniversary of AEC, she also celebrates her 10 year anniversary of having beat breast cancer. Reflecting on the past 10 years, Kelly says, “It’s been an incredible journey. I wouldn’t trade AEC for any corporate office job. I love what I do from being in the field, to solving complex environmental issues for my clients. Every day offers something new.”
Today AEC serves a variety of clients in the public and private sector with notable projects including: the I-4 Ultimate Project, Kirkman Road (CR435) Extension supporting Universal Orlando’s new Epic theme park, a Seminole County Brownfield Site, the Holy Land new owner property assessment, and environmental assessment of numerous 1,000+ acre sites throughout Florida involving multi-use housing and commercial redevelopment.