Our Team in Houston, TX

Ed Ulrich

Ed Ulrich: a.k.a. “Dr. Dirt”

Ed Ulrich graduated from Georgia Tech in 1969 with a BCE. After serving primarily as a foundation construction engineer, he enrolled in the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign where he was awarded an MSCE in 1971 with majors in Soil Mechanics, Rock Engineering, and Engineering Geology.  He then continued as a construction engineer and project engineer before he and his family crossed the Sabine River in 1972 and joined the former McClelland Engineers.

For 12 years, Ed served in a variety of capacities at McClelland Engineers. He directed foundation assignments offshore, and on three continents, thus becoming aware that construction means and methods governed foundation design.  His noteworthy local projects include:

  • “The World’s Tallest Soil Supported Building – [Texas Commerce Tower] Chase Tower at 75 stories”
  • “The World’s Tallest Suburban Office Building – Transco Tower at 64 stories”
  • The Wortham Theater Complex
  • “ENRON Building 2”
  • Calpine Tower
  • The Houston Rockets Toyota Arena
  • Texas Medical Center Smith Tower

Earning the Title “Dr. Dirt”

In the mid 1980’s, Ulrich Engineers, Inc. was called upon to guide the design and construction of the new Harris County Jail Complex. This was the most ambitious contribution to the Houston Central Business District since building the 75-story Chase Tower, the world’s tallest soil-supported building. The jail project consisted of building new structures and the rehabilitation of an existing cold storage warehouse, all on the banks of old Houston waterways. Specifically, the constructions involved the following elements:

  • Old Warehouse
  • New Jail
  • Connecting Bridges
  • Additional Tunnel
  • Processing Center
  • Old Jail

The assignment was particularly challenging in that the success of the foundation design depended largely on the understanding of foundation conditions at the close of the 18th century. A major slope failure had already occurred and had destroyed the original site.

Ulrich Engineers, Inc. guided the design and construction of foundations, planned necessary repairs that would allow the failed site to be developed, supervised construction, and designed a scheme which doubled the height of the cold storage warehouse to form the new jail without needing new foundations… all feats unequaled in Houston history.

The owner-developer and contractor honored Mr. Ulrich with the title, “Dr. Dirt,” for his leadership in the project foundation engineering because he played an enormous part in the success of the project. This title continues to be synonymous with the Ulrich Engineers team today.

Patricia Calley

Patricia Calley: Vice President

Pat Calley is the co-founder and vice president of Ulrich Engineers, Inc. To this day, she remains the essential ingredient of stability in an environment focused on creating mechanics models from earth, and persuading contractors to choose successful engineering techniques and designs.

With previous experience as a laboratory testing technician and secretary, she has grown to manage the office and execute the duties of payroll, accounts payable, and human resources. Always steady and patient, she provides the calmness when there appears to be none.

Theresa Crochet

Theresa Ramirez: Administrative Assistant

Theresa became a member of our team in 2012 after spending several years in the banking industry. With incredible energy and drive, she always jumps into projects with both feet and never backs down from a challenge. Committed to the success of our business, she eagerly performs laboratory testing, invoicing, and helps the president in his tasks.  She also enjoys munching without gaining an ounce!

Scott WebScott T Medbury: Construction Services Supervisor & Environmental Specialist

After completing the requirements for a BA in Geography, Natural Resources, and Environmental Studies, Scott Medbury left the arts and sciences for a career in construction.  In his professional career, Scott has provided nearly four decades of construction services in association with underground design.His past project work includes slope rehabilitation, earthwork, foundation design, construction of deep basements and tunnels, and even contractor neutralization. Difficult construction projects have grown to be Scott’s specialty and he has shown that he can achieve the unthinkable when others develop reasons to fail.

Christopher D. Guempel

Christopher D. Guempel: Specialist in Foundation Construction & Environmental Services

Chris hails from across the Sabine and LSU. Although he started out as an environment specialist, Chris eventually stepped into construction and never looked back. The excitement of being part of a team that creates essential structures instead of locating contaminants has continued to captivate his interests.

Contractors have come to know Chris as the leader of Mission Impossible. His art works continuously impresses the team.

Jeremy Canney

Jeremy Canney: Environmental and Construction Specialist

Bachelor of Science, Texas A & M University

Wilderness First Aid Trained and Certified Diver

Jeremy has the unique experience of being employed full time while pursuing his undergrad studies at Texas A & M and paying for all of his college costs.  After serving the US Government in a variety of capacities throughout the West and Texas, he joined Ulrich Engineers, Inc. to serve in a more applied environmental engineering capacity.  He has served as a foundation construction specialist in earthwork construction, shallow foundation installation, dewatering, basement water proofing, and braced excavation construction.  

Notable Projects

  • St. John’s Great Hall
  • Schlumberger Expansions
  • Skanska Tall Buildings 

Rene C. Carrizales

Rene C. Carrizales, EIT

Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering, University of Texas at San Antonio

Rene served as a coordinating civil engineer before joining the Ulrich Team in 2009 to specialize in earthwork and foundations. He quickly embraced basement water proofing and pond construction. Rene has become one of the leading specialists in the underground water control challenge. The staff of CETCO and TREMCO has praised him for his thorough project engineering.

As the lead engineer in construction engineering and foundation design, Rene has completed projects ranging from one story residences to tall buildings with deep excavations. He was the lead foundation engineer for the Rice University Brockman Hall for Physics which included a one level basement and Green Roof that could not leak!

Clients and Contractors know Rene as the Captain of Construction.