Over 50 Years of Structural Engineering: A 6-Decade Timeline


Illustrated above are decade snapshots that highlight six chapters of the 54+ year PCS story. Building on over 50 years of experience delivering structural solutions to our clients across the Pacific Northwest and beyond, present-day PCS Structural Solutions continues to grow and set our sights on a bright future. As you click through the images above, you will see snapshots of our history over the decades. We have marked only a handful of the projects, partners, and milestones that shaped the growth and development of our firm - the complete narrative includes our entire staff, great clients and industry partners who have shared in moments of the first 50 years.  

Our first decade as a firm: In 1965, Ray Chalker and Skip Bush established Chalker Engineers—the same year the Beatles released four new albums including “Help”, gas was 31 cents a gallon, and an attempt to move the Cleveland Indians to Seattle fell apart.


In the early 1980's, Chalker Engineers (known today as PCS Structural Solutions) designed a network of glulam arching trusses to span further than ever before and incorporated pre-cast concrete hollow core planks to shave time off construction schedules.  At the same time, big hair and neon dominated fashion, the average cost of a new home was $82,200, and Bill Gates was hired by IBM to create an operating system for a new PC.


2nd generation of leadership: in 1987, Dan Putnam, Jim Collins, and Don Scott took over the reins as firm leaders with the support of their associates depicted above (left to right) Aaron Goodwin, Gary Beckner, Rick Oehmcke, and Jack Pinkard. 1987 was also the year that Bon Jovi was topping the charts with his smash hit "Livin' on a Prayer", the cost of Superbowl ad was $600,000, and the Seattle Seahawks signed "The Boz", Brian Bosworth, to the biggest rookie contract in NFL history.


Our 4th decade as a firm began with key projects that marked the revitalization of downtown Tacoma, the growth of our Seattle office, and ended with PCS championing and embracing the soon-to-be BIM revolution. The turn of the century also brought us reality TV (50 million viewers watched the first season finale of Survivor), oil topping at $30/barrel for the first time, and banking software that used four digits to represent the year.


Celebrating our 5th decade: In 2007, after collaborating with Dan, Jim and Don on a legacy rebrand campaign, Brian Phair and Craig Stauffer transitioned into CEO and President of PCS Structural Solutions  ushering in a new era of 3D design tools and pushing a culture of enhanced collaboration. 


Looking ahead from 2016 and beyond to the next 50 years, we eagerly look forward to future decades and the stories and relationships they will bring. The opening of our new Portland office and expansion of our Seattle space will enable us to continue working as one unified firm with national reach and a singular passion.