GHA Elevates GIS Services

GHA is excited to announce a major overhaul and upgrade to our GIS web servers and data hosting environment. After months of research and discussions, GHA migrated from an on-premises GIS server to a managed cloud-based environment.

As a client, you are not expected to experience any downtime during business hours. This upgrade will allow us to provide better service with faster applications and less downtime.

Migrating to a cloud environment will allow us to provide better service on several fronts:

Faster performance – Web applications will load and run noticeably faster for clients and mobile users. Our current system sits behind layers of firewalls and IT security that cause maps to load slower than we’d like. The new system will run faster for all users, increasing efficiency and decreasing frustration.

Increased Availability & Reliability – GIS in the Cloud can put out information in the public domain, for continuous updates and open access. Down time will be significantly reduced if not eliminated.

Easier Accessibility for Users – Services are available automatically, regardless of the user’s location, and consumers are not required to interact with each service provider. Consumers do not necessarily need technical knowledge of computing services to be able to access and share information.

Unlimited Users – Clients can add unlimited users to access secured services or edit data in the field/office.

Increased Security – The structure of new system reduce the risk of hackers while maintaining GHA’s standard of data security. GIS data will be backed up every 4 hours, meaning your data is always secure.

Scalability – As your GIS database and resources increase in size, our new system will be able to accommodate for years and years to come.

Reduced Maintenance Costs – The new system will require less maintenance and administration time for GHA staff, meaning less cost for clients.

Up-to-Date Technology – The cloud system will allow GHA to more easily upgrade to the latest software meaning clients to the latest GIS solutions and resources.

For more information about GHA’s valuable GIS services, contact Greg Newton, GISP

Todd Gordon Named CEO

Todd P. Gordon, P.E., was named Chief Executive Officer of GHA. Gordon has been with GHA for over 22 years and has served as Director of Construction and Survey, and Director of Transportation Services. He has brought consistently excellent leadership and vision, and is poised to guide GHA now and into the future with emphasis on an inclusive culture, community involvement, and a wide variety of opportunities for GHA staff growth.

Todd P. Gordon is a Registered Professional Engineer practicing for over 30 years as a Civil Engineer with emphasis on municipal engineering, roadway design and construction engineering. Prior to joining GHA, Mr. Gordon served as Assistant Director of Engineering for the Village of Gurnee.

Contact Todd

Art Penn Adds President to COO

Arthur J. Penn, P.E. has been named President of GHA and will remain Chief Operations Officer as he has been since 2020. Penn’s focus is on creating and refining processes that enable GHA’s ability to consistently deliver services and deliverables with accuracy, timeliness, and compliance. Art has been with GHA for over 20 years, formerly serving as Director of Data Collection, in which he refined systems that support industry-leading turnaround time and data integrity.

Arthur J. Penn, President and Chief Operations Officer, served as GHA’s director of Data Collection Division for 16 years prior to his appointment as COO in 2020, then President in 2021.

Contact Art

GHA Principals Named

GHA proudly announces that several key leaders who have played important roles in developing GHA’s reputation for excellence and dependability are now Principals. In this, each Principal is enabled to be dedicated to further developing specific areas in which they have focused:

Donald Dixon, P.E.

Don has been instrumental in Site Design for many clients in their educational and campus improvements, and has become a leading figure in Data Center site development. In this growing market, he will put his expertise to work with a primary focus on Data Center development clients.

Contact Don

Donald Matthews, P.E., CFM

Don is well-known throughout the Site Design community. He is Vice President of GHA and most recently, Director of Site Design Services where he has played significant parts in designing and managing innumerable projects in Parks and Recreation, and Campus Design.

Contact Don

Michael Shrake, P.E.

Mike, who was GHA’s first-ever intern, has served in a variety of leadership roles, most recently, CEO. He chose to focus entirely on helping clients in special use sites as well as Parks and Recreation, fueled by his extensive experience in all phases of projects.

Contact Mike

Michael Warner, P.E., CFM

Mike joined GHA in early 2020 following his well-known presence as executive Director of the Lake County Stormwater Management Commission. His expertise on both the regulatory and project management sides brings great insight to GHA’s Water Resources work.

Contact Mike

Walter Graft, P.E.

Walt has been with GHA for over 30 years as a Civil Engineer, concentrating his focus on municipal engineering, school, hospital, park, and commercial site development, and stormwater management. He is particularly well-known for his athletic facilities projects both for educational and park district clients.

Contact Walt

Dave Marquardt Received ESOP Award

We celebrate Dave Marquardt for being named The ESOP Association - IL Chapter Employee Owner of the Year! Dave has been an integral part of creating a culture at GHA that values the individual, fosters teamwork, and personal growth in a work environment committed to quality and consistent growth. Congratulations Dave!

Division Directors Promoted

Brian Wesolowski, P.E., CFM - Director of Site Design Services

Brian Wesolowski is a civil engineer with eleven years of industry experience. He began as an intern at GHA in 2007 and joined the firm full-time following graduation in 2010. Brian’s work has been concentrated mainly on municipal engineering and construction phase services. Brian is a highly accomplished design engineer with numerous successful water main and sewer projects. He works closely with clients to design capital improvements and coordinates with contractors to ensure quality results. Brian also often assists with addressing issues that arise during construction.

David Marquardt - Director of Construction and Survey

K. David Marquardt is a Senior Construction Engineer with over 30 years of industry experience, with an emphasis on infrastructure improvements. As the Director of Construction and Survey, Dave is responsible for coordinating and scheduling projects with clients and other Divisions within the firm and provides guidance and support to field staff. He has served as a field engineer for a variety of municipal and private sector projects with responsibility for managing all phases of the construction project. Prior to joining GHA, Dave worked for IDOT in the Bureau of Construction on complex utility, road, and bridge reconstruction projects.

Leo Morand, P.E. - Director of Municipal Services

Leo Morand first joined GHA in 2001 as an intern and after receiving his degree in 2002, he became a full-time project engineer focusing primarily on municipal engineering, site design, construction engineering, and maintenance planning. Leo manages projects directly for numerous government agencies that include municipal capital improvement projects and several school districts whose improvement projects have been lead by Leo for years.

Lucas Deferville - Assistant Director of Construction Services

Lucas Deferville is a Senior Construction Engineer with over 18 years of experience with an emphasis on construction engineering and contract administration. Lucas has been with GHA for 22 years as a full-time employee and for four years prior as an intern. As the Assistant Director of Construction, Mr. Deferville oversees construction phase operations and is responsible for managing all phases of Phase III.

Mei Zhu, P.E., CFM, LEED AP - Director of Water Resources

Mei Zhu is a Registered Professional Engineer and a Certified Floodplain Manager practicing for 25 years as a Civil Engineer. Mei has specialized in site design and regulatory permitting, floodplain and stormwater management, hydrologic and hydraulic analysis, stream restoration, existing drainage assessment and remediation, green infrastructure practices, regulatory ordinance enforcement, and soil erosion and sediment control. Mei has been with GHA since 2000.

GHA Welcomes Michael Warner, P.E., CFM to the Team

GHA is very pleased to announce that Michael Warner, P.E., CFM has joined the GHA Team! We’re looking forward to great things ahead for GHA Water Resources in 2021 and beyond! Read the Press Release here

GHA Weighs in on Traffic for Proposed Projects near the Former Sears Store at the Corner of North and Harlem Avenues.

April 16, 2019 -

We are proud to announce that Lynn Means, Senior Transportation Engineer, was quoted in an article in the Chicago Tribune.

Gewalt Hamilton Associates Senior Transportation Engineer, Lynn Means said a traffic study noted that "roughly 26 percent" of people currently use public transportation and that "there will be an incentive for people to walk and use alternative modes of transportation."

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Todd Gordon Featured in Crain's Chicago Business

September 3, 2018 -

We are proud to announce that Todd Gordon, Director of the Construction & Survey Division, was featured in Crain's Chicago Business' "People on the Move" section.

View Article

Art Penn Speaks at the National Travel Monitoring Exposition and Conference (NaTMEC)

June 12, 2018 - Irvine, CA

Art Penn spoke at the National Travel Monitoring Exposition and Conference (NaTMEC) in Irvine, CA. This biennial conference attracts transportation data users and travel monitoring professionals from around the world to exchange ideas and learn about new technologies, best practices, and innovative processes.

Art's presentation, "Video Data Collection: More Than Just Volume Counts?", discussed a creative use of video collection units in combination with license plate recognition cameras. In addition to vehicle classification, this application of technologies enabled the Kansas Turnpike Authority (KTA) to identify the origin of cash-paying vehicles (those not using the KTAG electronic tolling system), who make up approximately 60% of KTA  travelers.