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Leadership Spotlight with Sean Swartz: Senior Vice President, Upper Midwest Engineering and Testing

Sean Swartz family

We recently spoke with Sean Swartz to learn more about his new role as Senior Vice President and leader of our Upper Midwest Engineering and Testing group. We asked him about his background, what he enjoys about working at Braun Intertec and his new role, and his advice for those just starting their career.

What is your current role at Braun Intertec?
I lead our Upper Midwest Engineering and Testing Group, which provides geotechnical engineering and construction materials testing services from our Minnesota, North Dakota and Wisconsin offices. I work closely with Ryan Venable, Senior Vice President for our South Central Engineering and Testing Group, which includes our offices in Iowa, Kansas, Texas and Louisiana. The most important aspect of my role is leading and supporting my team in being the best consultants and leaders they can be.

What is your professional background?
After graduating from the University of Minnesota with a BS in geological engineering, I started at Braun Intertec as a Staff Engineer in our St. Cloud office in 1999 with a focus on geotechnical engineering. Over the years I was offered several opportunities to further my skills and experience in our North Dakota offices starting in 2004, and then in our Twin Cities offices since 2017. I’ve been fortunate to work my way up through most of the roles in our Engineering and Testing group and have learned that whether you’re an entry-level technician or one of our most senior engineers, each role is critical to the success of our team.

What is the most rewarding part of what you do at Braun Intertec?
It is truly a privilege to come to work every day with the goal of helping and supporting those around me to be the best they can be. The cherry on top is that I get to do so for a company that is 100% employee-owned, where we all profit from our successes.

What is your favorite thing about working at Braun Intertec?
Hands down, it’s the people. Braun Intertec is filled with awesome people who come to work every day wanting to be the best version of themselves; for the sake of our clients and for the sake of their fellow employee-owners. 

What traits do you look for in your team members?
The two most valuable traits I look for are a strong work ethic and interpersonal skills. At Braun Intertec we are a relationship-based consulting firm, where our client relationships and our internal relationships are of the utmost value. We also look for flexibility and a willingness to learn. We are a growing firm that will continue to look for people who are open to opportunities and can thrive as part of a team.

Do you have a piece of advice for someone entering your profession, or who is just starting at Braun Intertec?
If you’re starting out in your profession, just know that you’re not expected to know everything coming out of school. At Braun Intertec, we offer training and can help further your knowledge so my advice would be to show up with that same thirst for learning you had when you were in school. Every individual that works for us is encouraged to be a continual learner, just as our supervisors are expected to be continual teachers. We’ll also present you with opportunities to work on a variety of project types, and in a variety of cities across the US. 

For those of you just starting at Braun Intertec, I cannot wait to meet you. Know that you’re starting work for a company that values and rewards hard work, teamwork, and individuals who seize opportunities.

What are some of your hobbies, or things you like to do outside of work?
My wife and I have three kids, which keeps both of us busy. When we do have free time, I love to spend it fishing, camping, golfing, and traveling with my family.