July 29, 2011
Joseph Schaffer, PE, Green Environmental Associates
, Metuchen, NJ
What did your life look like before you started Green Environmental Associates?
Prior to deciding to work for myself, I was doing site civil engineering for commercial developers, projects like big box retail and mega subdivisions. My work has always revolved around design and engineering in land development. This type of work requires the ability to balance hardcore science and site specific conditions in the field with fuzzier disciplines, like urban planning theory, construction tolerance, and environmental concerns.
Describe your “Eureka!” moment that shaped your decision to start your own company.
To make a real impact, I believe that a professional must really understand the existing approach to development and work to change that approach from the inside the system. However, that desire for change must be integrated into the mission of the company. I met my business partners while working on a corporate advisory board and we found that common ground. So we started Green Environmental Associates to reflect a mission of bringing change from the inside. We’re not just consultants, but partners in shaping our client’s future.