EDI Celebrates 20 Years

This year marks Environmental Design International inc.'s (EDI) 20th anniversary. Deborah M. Sawyer, CHMM, founder, President, and CEO of EDI, started the firm by taking on, and accomplishing one small and frequently messy project after another. Since then, EDI experienced consistent growth and continues to do so year after year.

Before starting EDI, Ms. Sawyer worked for a large engineering consulting firm where she rose up the ranks to senior vice president and found success by creating its profitable solid, toxic and hazardous waste management division.

Realizing she reached the limits of advancing further working for someone else, she decided to take a chance and follow an entrepreneurial path. Glass ceilings and economic barriers not withstanding, Ms. Sawyer launched EDI as an engineering and environmental services company on February 22, 1991.

"EDI's success stems from ingenuity, hard work and the good fortune to work with a team of professionals that are the best in the business," Ms. Sawyer said at a February Open House, where the firm entertained a diverse group of 250 clients to celebrate two decades of successful projects.

One recent project—EDI's engineering work for the development of the nation's largest urban solar power plant—garnered EDI the Eminent Conceptor Award. It is the highest award given by ACEC Illinois (American Council of Engineering Companies of Illinois).

"You do not stay in business this long unless you are doing things right," Ms. Sawyer said. "It has been an exciting journey and I look forward to the next 20 years."

The photo gallery below was taken at EDI's 20th anniversary Open House on February 24, 2011.


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