The KBGE Story

A concrete salesman, a ‘Nawlins Cajun, a traveling music enthusiast and a golfer walk into a bar…that’s not exactly how it happened, but it’s how we like to remember it. The leadership team at KBGE has as varied life experiences as professional histories. All four principals have honed their engineering expertise at large firms in Central Texas. Each has also spent his or her early years out of college at small engineering firms. We feel this combination of styles yields a well-rounded leadership team, one that leads in a professional, yet personal direction.

Chad Kimbell, PE, grew up in Georgia, but headed west to school at the University of Colorado at Boulder. After learning the craft of engineering in the District of Columbia region, Chad decided to follow his ears and found his way to the Live Music Capital of the World. Since planting his roots in Austin, Chad has helped shape the skyline of the city with numerous projects that boast some of the best addresses in town. Urban infill may be a unique concept to many in Central Texas, but it is common practice back east where Chad cut his teeth. Fortunately, this experience has lent itself quite well to the direction of development in Austin. Counting on his background and favored clients, and maybe throwing the dice a bit, Chad started his own firm, Kimbell Consulting.

Gabe Bruehl, PE, grew up in Norman, Oklahoma. An OU Sooner through and through, he went to Oklahoma State University to earn a bachelor’s and master’s degree in engineering. Since 1999, Gabe has practiced his craft in Austin, designing site plans, analyzing drainage basins, tearing up local fairways and wowing his clients by helping form strategies for their projects at the outset. Land development codes can be extremely difficult to navigate. Gabe has a thorough understanding of codes and the code process and is able to select the most efficient path to the desired destination. In our experience, if you don’t map the right path at the start of a project, the project may drift like a boat with a broken rudder. You will want this confused Sooner as your captain. Since Gabe and Chad had worked before, they decided to join forces. Kimbell | Bruehl was gaining momentum, as well as an impressive client base.

Jennifer Garcia, PE, is a New Orleans native and graduate of the University of New Orleans. After graduating with a civil engineering degree in 1998, she naturally found her way to the shipyards of the Port of New Orleans and spent the next seven years building ships for the US Navy. A few twists of fate and a short six-hour drive later, Jenn arrived in Austin. Since then, she has learned the ins and outs of site development, drainage and the unique aspects of dam safety for the State of Texas. Jennifer left the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality in 2011 to join what was then Kimbell | Bruehl. The firm was coming together nicely, and it now had its “G”.

Also hailing from Oklahoma is Brian Estes, PE, another product of Oklahoma State University. After obtaining his bachelor’s degree in 1997, Brian left Stillwater for Austin, earning his master’s in 2001 from The University of Texas. Brian’s key experience lies with single-family development and master-planned communities. After 12 years of churning out lots for small developers and national companies, the single-family market took a turn for the worse in 2008. This nationwide downturn allowed Brian to try something new. After three years in the precast concrete world, it was time to get back to his professional roots. Becoming the fourth piece of the puzzle, the team was completed in June 2012, when Estes joined Kimbell, Bruehl and Garcia.

Dean Koleada, P.E., grew up in Edmond, Oklahoma and obtained his bachelor’s degree in civil engineering from “The” University of Oklahoma in 2000. Dean started his career in Tulsa, working on a variety of public works and site development projects. After a few years, he jumped at the opportunity to live, work and play in the vibrant city of Austin, Texas. This is where his relationship with the folks at KBGE was formed. In 2010, Dean’s growing family brought him back to his old stomping grounds in Oklahoma City, where he continued to expand his experience and take on additional infrastructure and Hydrologic & Hydraulic projects. Fast forward a few years, and KBGE is looking to expand into the Oklahoma City market. With Dean’s regional experience and relationship with the team (and with a little negotiating) he joined KBGE in 2015, establishing the firm’s first expansion outside of Texas.

KBGE. That’s pretty much our story. Even if it didn’t happen in a bar, that’s mostly the way we remember it.

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