Lasse Petterson has served as Chief Executive Officer (CEO) since May 2017, and was named Chief Executive Officer & President in 2020. Most recently, Mr. Petterson served as a private consultant to clients in the Oil and Gas sector and served as Chief Operating Officer (COO) and Executive Vice President at Chicago Bridge and Iron (CB&I) from 2009 to 2013. Reporting directly to the CEO, he was responsible for all of CB&I’s engineering, procurement and construction project operations and sales. Prior to CB&I, Mr. Petterson was CEO of Gearbulk, Ltd., a privately held company that owns and operates one of the largest fleets of gantry craned open hatch bulk vessels in the world. He was also President and COO of AMEC Inc. Americas, a subsidiary of AMEC plc, a British multi-national consulting, engineering and project management company. Prior to joining AMEC, Mr. Petterson served in various executive and operational positions for Aker Maritime, Inc., the deepwater division of Aker Maritime ASA of Norway, over the course of 20 years. He spent the first nine years of his career in various positions at Norwegian Contractors, an offshore oil and gas platform contractor. Mr. Petterson holds both Master’s and bachelor’s degrees from the Norwegian University of Technology, and currently serves as Chief Executive Officer & President of Great Lakes Corporation.
Mark Marinko has served as Senior Vice President, Chief Financial Officer since 2014. Prior to joining Great Lakes, Mr. Marinko was President of the Consumer Services Division at TransUnion, where he led the company’s business-to-business and business-to-consumer sales, customer service, consumer compliance, and corporate marketing. Mr. Marinko held accounting and financial roles as Controller and Vice President of Finance at TransUnion, from 1996-2004. Previously, he served as Controller of Official Airline Guides.Mr. Marinko has over 30 years of financial leadership practice, specializing in accounting, finance, sales, systems and business operations. He earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Accounting and Business Administration from Augustana College.
David E. Simonelli is GLDD's Chief Operating Officer and served as President—Dredging Division since April 2010. He has overall responsibility for the Dredging Division including safety, estimating, engineering, domestic and foreign operations, and plant and equipment. He was named a Vice President of the Company in 2002 and Special Projects Manager in 1996. He joined the Company in 1978 as a Civil Engineer and has since held positions of increasing responsibility in domestic and international operations and project management. Mr. Simonelli earned a Bachelor of Science in Civil and Environmental Engineering from the University of Rhode Island. He is a member of the Hydrographic Society, the American Society of Civil Engineers, and The Western Dredging Association.
Kathleen LaVoy has served as Senior Vice President, Chief Legal Counsel and Corporate Secretary since January 2018. In addition to those, Kathleen has recently been appointed Chief Compliance Officer. Previously, she served the Company as Interim Chief Legal Officer and Corporate Secretary (since 2015) and was appointed Vice President and General Counsel, Dredging Operations in July 2012. She joined the Company in 2007 as Assistant General Counsel. Mrs. LaVoy received her J.D. cum laude from Northwestern University School of Law and was an associate in the litigation department of the Chicago law firm Winston & Strawn LLP following graduation. Mrs. LaVoy earned a Bachelor of Science degree with distinction in Business Administration from the University of North Carolina – Chapel Hill. She is a fourth generation dredger.
William H. Hanson is the Senior Vice President - Government Relations & Business Development. A 40 year veteran of the dredging and maritime construction industry, Bill Hanson has been with GLDD for 29 years and a Vice President since 2004. In 2013, he opened GLDD’s first office in Washington DC. Mr. Hanson began his career with the US Army Corps of Engineers in Galveston and Los Angeles, and then worked for Connolly Pacific of Long Beach, California before joining GLDD in 1988. At GLDD, he served in management roles in the North Atlantic and Southern Divisions as well as managing Latin America for 12 years. Mr. Hanson serves on several Federal Advisory committees as well as on boards of groups with national and regional interest to GLDD, and several academic advisory boards related to ocean and coastal engineering. Mr. Hanson is a 1979 Ocean Engineering graduate of Texas A&M, where he was named a distinguished alumni in 2013.
James Tastard joined Great Lakes as Senior Vice President & Chief Human Resources and Administrative Officer in October 2020. As a member of the Executive Team, he is responsible for leading GLDD’s HR organization, Talent Management, Leadership Development, and Learning, Compensation, and Benefits, Employee Relations, Payroll, Risk Management, Marketing and Communications, and Environment, Social, and Governance (ESG). James has been a leader in Human Resources for three decades, focused on driving business results through the unique intersection of strategy, leadership, and culture. With a distinct focus on leadership, his areas of expertise include developing top talent, succession planning for critical roles, helping organizations thrive in dynamic conditions, and leading large-scale complex change. Before joining GLDD, James served as a strategic talent and leadership consultant. Previously, he worked as Chief Human Resource Officer at Geokinetics, VPHR at Freeport LNG, VPHR at Statoil (now Equinor), and SVP HR & HSE at Aker Solutions. James spent ten years working and living globally to deliver significant oil and gas capital projects in Saudi Arabia, the United Kingdom, Russia, and Norway. Earlier in his career, he held positions leading people and organization change strategy, M&A, health, safety and environment, and global human resources. James holds a bachelor’s degree from California State University, Long Beach, an MBA from the University of Phoenix, and received a Ph.D. in Business, Organization, and Management from Capella University.
Kyle D. Johnson is the Executive Vice President, Operations & Project Services for GLDD. He had served as Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer from 2013 to 2020. Prior, he served the Company as a Senior Vice President from 2009 and held responsibility of Operations from 2010. Previously, he held the position of Vice President and Chief Contract Manager since 2006. He joined the Company in 1983 as a Mechanical Engineer, and has since held positions of increasing responsibility in domestic and international engineering and operations. Mr. Johnson earned a Bachelor of Science in Engineering from Purdue University and a Master of Science in Construction Engineering and Management from Stanford University.
John F. Karas is the Senior Vice President of Estimating and has been a Senior Vice President of the GLDD since 2009. Previously, he served as a Vice President since 2002, and was named Chief Estimator in 1992. He joined the Company in 1983 as Project Engineer in the Hopper Division. Mr. Karas earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Finance from the University of Notre Dame. He is a member of the Western Dredging Association and the Association for the Advancement of Cost Engineering.
Steven W. Becker was named Senior Vice President, Fleet Engineering in 2020 after serving as Senior Vice President of the Plant & Equipment Division since 2013, and Vice President from 2006. Since 1995, he has managed the Equipment Maintenance and Mechanical Engineering Departments. Prior to serving as a Vice President, Mr. Becker held the positions of Chief Mechanical Engineer Manager and Manager of Production Engineering. He joined Great Lakes in 1984 as a Field Engineer after interning with the company during college as a Design Engineer/Draftsman. Mr. Becker earned a bachelor’s degree in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Illinois.
Christopher Gillespie is Senior Vice President, Cutter Suction Dredge Fleet Manager. Prior to this, he had been GLDD's Vice President and Special Projects Manager since 1997. He joined the Company in 1987 as a Project Engineer and previously served as a Commissioned Officer in the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. Mr. Gillespie earned a Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering from the U.S. Military Academy at West Point and a graduate degree in Environmental Engineering from the University of Tulane. He is a member of the Society of American Military Engineers.
Russell F. Zimmerman is the Senior Vice President, Project and Area Operations - Southeast. Before that Mr. Zimmerman had been Vice President and Area Manager, South Atlantic since 2013. He was promoted to Vice President for Special Project in 2009 and served as Vice President, Chief Estimator from 2011 – 2013. He joined the Company in 1982 as a Field Engineer and has held positions of increasing responsibility in project management. Mr. Zimmerman earned a Bachelor of Science in Construction Management Technology from Purdue University. He is a member of the Society of American Military Engineers and the Western Dredging Association.
David Johanson serves as Senior Vice President, Project and Area Operations - Gulf at Great Lakes Dredge and Dock with overall responsibility for processes, policies and controls for ensuring that dredging operations are executed safely, efficiently, profitably and consistent with Corporate operating and site procedures. Mr. Johanson graduated from Virginia Polytechnic Institute & State University with a BS in Ocean Engineering. He has been with the Company for over 25 years.
Steven L. Lane has been serving as Vice President, Rivers and Lakes Division Manager since 2015. He is responsible and oversees the R&L division’s performance, business development, project operations, and equipment requirements to better suit the targeted market. He joined GLDD in 2013 as a Project Director until he was promoted to his present position in 2015. He has over 30 years of managerial experience in engineering, special marine vessel construction, and hopper/hydraulic dredging operations. Mr. Lane attended the University of Minnesota for Mechanical Engineering before starting his career in the shipbuilding business.
Steven R. Auernhamer was named Vice President, Commercial Clients in 2020 and was previously GLDD's VP and Area Manager, Gulf Coast since 2012. He started with Great Lakes in 1990 as a Field Engineer after graduating with a bachelor’s degree in Civil Engineering from Michigan Technological University. He was promoted to Hydraulic Division Engineer in 1999, and a Project Sponsor in 2006 and Area Manager, Gulf Coast in 2011.
T. Christopher Roberts was named Vice President in 2011 having developed and managed the Field Engineering Department from 1996. He joined the Company in 1989 as a Field Engineer Intern and within Engineering roles worked on Company projects throughout the US and Middle East. He holds a bachelor’s degree in Civil Engineering Technology from Murray State University and a Master of Business Administration from Lewis University.
Christopher G. Gunsten, P.E. serves as Vice President, International Operations with responsibility for acquiring projects, providing estimation data, and leading field supervision of work in progress. Chris began his career with Great Lakes Dredge & Dock Company as a Field Engineer in1992. Career highlights include serving as Deputy Project Manager for Chevron’s Wheatstone LNG Project’s Engineering, Procure and Construct dredging subcontract in Onslow, WA, Australia valued at $1.2 billion AUD, as Project Manager executing a series of capital projects for the USACE New York District’s 45 and 50 Foot Harbor Deepening Programs, and as Operations Manager for GLDD’s Øresund Fixed Link Project in Copenhagen, Denmark. He received his Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering from Rutgers University.
Katherine Hayes O'Halloran was appointed to her position of Vice President, Corporate Controller in 2013. She served as Company Treasurer since 2011 and previously held the role of Director of Investor Relations and Financial Reporting since joining the Company in 2006. Prior to Great Lakes, Mrs. O’Halloran was Director of Corporate Accounting at TransUnion, LLC. She is a CPA and has a Bachelor of Science degree in Accountancy from Northern Illinois University and a Master of Business Administration in Finance from St. Xavier University in Chicago.