In pursuit of its mission to be recognized as the authority on construction auditing and controls, the National Association of Construction Auditors seeks out experts in the fields of auditing, construction management, real estate development, architecture, and engineering to serve on its Advisory Board. Its members are appointed by the Executive Board and serve on a voluntary basis. Its mission is to help serve the association and its members by providing expert counsel and guidance.
Richard L. Townsend, R. L. Townsend & Associates, Inc.
Rich Townsend is the President of R. L. Townsend & Associates, Inc., which has been in continuous operation since July 1984. Mr. Townsend’s experience includes conducting contract compliance audits and construction cost control consulting services in connection with construction and design contracts for multi-million dollar manufacturing, university, and school district facilities; regional shopping centers; apartment complexes; office buildings; hotels; convention centers; airports; banks; hospitals; warehouse distribution facilities; retail stores; office interior finish work; theme parks; and land development projects.
Rich is affiliated with Courtenay Thompson & Associates for the purpose of providing professional development training seminars on construction auditing and construction cost control. Since 1978, he has been active as an instructor for several of the professional development programs sponsored nationwide by The Institute of Internal Auditors, Inc. (IIA). He also conducts many in-house training seminars related to controlling and auditing construction costs. Rich is the co-developer and instructor of the construction audit related seminar entitled “Effective Auditing of Construction Activity,” which he taught for the IIA from 1985 through 2008. He is also the co-developer and instructor for the course entitled “Controlling Construction Costs,” which is sponsored by the University of Wisconsin’s School Of Business Management Institute.
Prior to establishing his consulting firm, Rich served 13 years in several staff and audit management positions for J C Penney, specializing in real estate and construction audit activities.
Mr. Townsend is a Certified Internal Auditor and a Certified Public Accountant. He is a 1971 graduate of Waynesburg (PA) College where he obtained a Bachelor of Science Degree with a major in accounting.
He is a recognized leader in the profession of internal auditing and a member in the Dallas Chapter of the Institute of Internal Auditors. In 1984, the Dallas Chapter of the IIA presented him with their “Outstanding Contribution to the Profession of Internal Auditing” award. In 1983, he received a best subject matter award for a technical session entitled “Performance of Construction Audits’ which he presented to the North American Conference for the IIA. In 1978, Rich was named “Outstanding Member of the Year” by the Dallas Chapter of the IIA.
William M. Brennan, Skanska USA Building
Bill Brennan, who has been in the construction industry for 40 years, recently joined Skanska USA as their Chief Operating Officer (COO). Bill has responsibility for the company’s Rockville, Md. and Blue Bell, Pa. operations and serves as the executive sponsor of Skanska’s internal Federal Government Center of Excellence (COE) designed to share best practices and maintain Skanska’s position as a leader in the industry. He will also serve as a member of Skanska USA Building’s senior leadership team.
Prior to joining Skanska, Brennan served as executive vice president at Turner Construction where he oversaw the company’s mid-Atlantic operations, among other territories, in addition to leading Turner’s Federal Government market segment group
Skanska USA is one of the largest, most financially sound construction networks in the country consisting of four business units: Skanska USA Building, which specializes in building construction; Skanska USA Civil, which is focused on civil infrastructure; Skanska Infrastructure Development, which develops public-private partnerships; and Skanska Commercial Development, which pursues commercial development initiatives in select U.S. markets. Headquartered in New York with 31 offices across the country, Skanska USA has approximately 11,000 employees and its 2015 revenues were $7.1 billion, representing 33 percent of Skanska’s global revenues.
Skanska is one of the world’s leading project development and construction groups with expertise in construction, development of commercial and residential projects and public-private partnerships. Based on its global green experience, Skanska aims to be the clients’ first choice for Green solutions. The Group currently has 43,000 employees in selected home markets in Europe, the U.S. and Latin America.
Mr. Brennan holds a Masters of Business Administration – Financial Management from Pace University, and a Bachelor of Science Degree in Civil Engineering from Pennsylvania State University.
Bill currently serves on the Board of Trustees – National Building Museum and the Board of Governors with Washington Building Congress. Previously, he served on the: District of Columbia Building and Industry Association – Board of Directors; Herndon Cultural Arts Center Advisory Committee; Primavera Contracting Advisory Board; Jubilee Support Alliance – Board of Directors; Virginia Tech. – College of Engineering Student Advisory Board; and the Associated Builders and Contractors – Board of Directors.
John Sier, Kitch Drutchas Wagner Valitutti & Sherbrook
John Sier concentrates his practice in dispute avoidance and resolution of commercial, healthcare and construction contract issues as head of Kitch Drutchas Wagner Valitutti & Sherbrook’s construction and commercial litigation group. In the construction industry, he has experience in analyzing legal aspects of various project delivery methods including drafting construction contracts as well as assisting in dispute resolution and project completion.
John has published articles and presented seminars on construction, healthcare and commercial issues across the country. Following his graduation from Drake University Law School and Graduate School in 1986, he established his practice in Detroit, Michigan, from where he continues to serve clients in various parts of North America.
In addition to being a Certified Mediator and serving on the AAA Panel of Construction Neutrals, he is active with several organizations, including the State Bar of Michigan, Iowa Bar Association, Detroit Metropolitan Bar Association, Catholic Lawyers Society, Associated general Contractors, Construction Association of Michigan, Construction Specifications Institute, Building Owners and Managers Association of Metropolitan Detroit, Construction Owners Association of America, and the Engineering Society of Detroit.
Philip G. Yates, Dewberry & Davis LLC
Phil Yates is a Senior Associate with the firm Dewberry & Davis. He has been with the firm for 24 years serving as the Director of the Urban Planning Department.
Phil has been involved in land use planning, comprehensive master planning, and zoning regulations for more than 50 years. He currently provides professional assistance to clients in the preparation of land use and site development plans, rezoning and special exception applications, and litigation matters. He assists in the processing and coordination of these plans and applications with local agencies, and in the presentation of the plans to citizen groups and appointed and elected officials.
Phil’s prior experience includes 17 years as a Planner for Fairfax County, Virginia; during which time he held the positions of Zoning Administrator and Assistant Director of the Office of Comprehensive Planning. He drafted the Fairfax County Zoning Ordinance which was adopted in 1978 and is still in effect at this time.
Mr. Yates has participated in more than 20 lawsuits as an expert witness in land development in Northern Virginia. He has received several distinguished service awards in his career, bestowed by both Fairfax County, Virginia and his current employer, Dewberry & Davis.
In his capacity at Dewberry & Davis, Phil has managed the provision of services for numerous land development projects and provided technical zoning counsel and process assistance to a wide array of major clients, such as: Centex Real Estate Corp.; Equity Office Properties Trust; KSI Services, Inc.; The Peterson Companies, L.C.; Prentiss Properties Ltd, Inc.; Computer Sciences Corp.; Gannett Co., Inc.; Inova Health System; Lerner Enterprises; Pulte Home Corp.; Prudential Development Group; and Uniwest Construction, Inc.
Robert A. McDonald, McDonald & Associates, Inc.
During his career, Bob has performed and managed internal audits, internal consulting, and security services in North America and Europe. These activities included the creation, organization, and management of the leading North American Construction Services practice devoted to servicing project Owners for Jefferson Wells.
Bob founded and heads McDonald & Associates, Inc., an organization devoted to providing internal auditing and consulting services primarily to organizations who own construction and major capital projects.
Prior to specializing in construction services, Bob managed internal auditing and security departments for Premier Industrial Corporation and the B F Goodrich Company.
Mr. McDonald is a Certified Construction Auditor, Certified Internal Auditor, and a Certified Fraud Examiner. He is a graduate of Ohio University in Athens, Ohio where he obtained a Bachelor of Science Degree.
Bob developed and teaches the “Construction Services Workshop” and is a frequent speaker at events and seminars sponsored by the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners and The Institute of Internal Auditors.
Colin Daigle, Marsh Risk Consulting
Mr. Daigle is the Global Practice Leader for Marsh Risk Consulting’s (MRC) Construction Consulting Practice. Colin’s responsibilities at MRC include leading a team of financial, engineering, construction and management experts engaging in various types of services, including project governance assessments, construction performance audits and investigations, contract disputes, and insurance claims preparation.
Mr. Daigle has regularly spoken about construction financial matters and has been published on the topics. His writing has appeared in the American Bar Association book “Construction Accounting: A Guide for Attorneys and Other Professionals,” and he has served as a guest instructor at Columbia University’s School of Engineering on multiple occasions. Mr. Daigle also recently served on the National Accounting and Reporting Committee for the Construction Financial Management Association (CFMA).
Previously, Colin worked in the project accounting and internal audit department of Miller & Long, a nationally ranked concrete contractor, as well as the advisory and litigation practices of PricewaterhouseCoopers and KPMG.
Mr. Daigle is a graduate of La Salle University with a BS degree in Business Administration, with advanced studies in the Accounting and Construction Management fields. He is a Certified Construction Auditor (CCA), Certified Public Accountant (CPA) and Forensic Certified Public Accountant (FCPA). He is also AICPA certified in Financial Forensics and Information Technology.
Jake Ortego, JA Cost Engineers and Advisors
Mr. Ortego is the co-founder and President of JA Cost Engineers and Advisors. He is a licensed mechanical engineer with over 25 years of experience in all phases of the design-construction process and extensive involvement in the project controls, scheduling, project management and engineering management of industrial and commercial projects.
Jake has conducted management and financial controls assessments of significant capital projects with a goal of improving performance and mitigating strategic and operational risks. Additionally, he has developed and implemented financial and project controls, as well as policies and procedures for the design-procurement-construction process. Mr. Ortego has performed construction audits and consulting on projects across many sectors, including commercial, financial, healthcare, biomedical, chemical and heavy industry. He has performed project controls and project management for projects between $50MM and $1.2B. Beyond his auditing and consulting work, Mr. Ortego has been requested to provide expert opinions for construction litigation as well as neutral third party opinions as part of settlement between parties.
Prior to joining Commercial Cost Control, Inc., Mr. Ortego was a primary member of Deloitte’s North Central Construction Advisory Group. This was preceded by his career in consulting engineering with Eichleay Engineers and SNC-Lavalin in Pittsburgh, PA. During this time, he spent 2 years managing an engineering office in the Philippines that focused on industrial construction. Jake’s time in the industrial design-construction arena has given him experience in project management, project controls, schedule management, cost engineering, progress audits, contract management and contract negotiations.
In addition to being a Certified Construction Auditor, Mr. Ortego is a Licensed Professional Engineer and a Certified Cost Engineer. He is a graduate of Boston University where he obtained a Bachelor of Science Degree with a major in Mechanical Engineering. He has been published by the Association for the Advancement of Cost Engineering (AACE) as well as “Retail Construction” magazine. Mr. Ortego has also provided conference presentations on construction auditing, project controls, cost forecasting, and ethics.
Bill Willbrand, Jr., Brown Smith Wallace LLP
Bill is a member of the firm’s Executive Committee and serves as the Partner-In-Charge of Vertical Markets, leading the Real Estate and Construction Advisory Service teams. He is responsible for the integration of all service components of the firm to meet the unique needs of facility owners and real estate developers, bringing a multi-disciplined team of over 20 professionals providing services to all phases of the construction life cycle; from project inception, mobilization and construction, finalization and close-out as well as project look-back analysis.
Bill’s professional tenure has included work in financial reporting, tax, as well as consulting in a wide range of areas including strategy development, process improvement and technology. He has honed his skills as a trusted advisor to the clients he serves.
His expertise includes construction auditing and cost control, financial analysis and budgeting, strategy development, implementation of “balanced scorecard” methodology, organizational development and succession planning, process improvement, and development of tax strategies.
Bill holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Accounting from Missouri State University, and is a Certified Public Accountant (CPA), Certified Construction Auditor (CCA), Construction Control Professional (CCP), and a Chartered Global Management Accountant (CGMA).
Seth T. Snyder, Grant Thornton
Seth is an Experienced Manager in the Forensic Advisory Services and the Construction Advisory Services practices in Chicago with over 12 years of experience in internal audit and business consulting. He primarily assists clients with forensic investigation and litigation support services as well as construction audit services.
Seth has assisted clients in forensic investigations involving suspected executive frauds and kickback schemes. In addition to investigation and dispute services, Seth has over 12 years of experience providing clients internal audit services, project risk assessments, contract compliance review and recovery audit services. Seth has 7 years of experience conducting construction contract compliance and recovery reviews for several utility, healthcare, university and financial services clients. In addition to construction contract compliance he has helped clients with reviews and operational effectiveness testing of processes and controls around construction management including: bidding, budgeting, and change order management. Additionally, Seth has helped clients in documenting current processes, developing future state process, and developing quick hit and long term process remediation strategies.
Additionally, Seth has extensive experience providing his clients internal audit and process remediation services.
Seth holds a BS Financial Accounting, Illinois State University and is a Certified Internal Auditor (CIA), Member, Institute of Internal Auditors (IIA) and a Certified Construction Auditor (CCA).
James T. Schmid, ResX, PC
Jim Schmid is the Managing Director of ResX, PC. He specializes in providing construction audit/oversight services and expert testimony on construction claims and other areas of commercial damages. Jim retired from Grant Thornton LLP in 2013, where he was the Partner in Charge of the U.S. Construction Forensics Services practice. Jim has testified as an expert witness on GAAP accounting issues, commercial damages, construction claims, contract compliance, intellectual property, business valuation, and post-acquisition disputes. He has presided over construction oversight and audit services for construction projects involving all types of construction contracts including lump sum, GMP, design-build, EPC, fast-track, IPD, and time & material.
Jim has over 40 years of professional experience in such diverse areas as industrial engineering, accounting, financial analysis, forensic accounting, construction management and business leadership. He is a licensed CPA, a Certified Fraud Examiner (CFE), a Certified Construction Auditor (CCA), certified in Business Valuation (CPA/ABV), and Certified in Financial Forensics (CFF). Jim has testified on construction damages, construction fraud, construction contract compliance, business valuation and business interruption in Federal and State courts as well as in arbitration and ADR.
Jim is a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA), the National Association of Construction Auditors (NACA), and the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners (ACFE).
Jim has acted as the technical reviewer for the college accounting textbook, Accounting Principles, and has authored chapters for four books on construction including, 1) Pricing the Loss, 2) Project Management Forms, 3) Post Failure Accounting Systems and Methods of Pricing Damages, and 4) Payment Delay Claims. He is also a frequent speaker at professional conferences and webinars on damages and fraud related topics.
Jim earned a Bachelor’s degree in Engineering (1974) from Oakland University (Rochester, Michigan) and an MBA (1978) from the University of Michigan (Ann Arbor, Michigan).
The NACA continues to recruit members for it’s Advisory Board.