TOLEDO, Ohio, November 20, 2023 – SSOE Group (www.ssoe.com), an internationally ranked architecture and engineering firm, is proud to announce that Brandon Darroch, PMP, Battery Market Leader and Vice President, Southeast Division Manager at SSOE, has been named to Building Design + Construction’s 40 Under 40 Class of 2023. This prestigious, global awards program recognizes architecture, engineering, and construction (AEC) professionals for their career achievements, passion for the AEC profession, involvement with industry organizations, and service to their communities.
Since joining SSOE in 2016 as a decorated veteran of the U.S. Army, Brandon continues to prove himself a rising star in the organization. His exemplary leadership capabilities have allowed him to quickly advance within the firm, with Brandon being named the youngest principal in SSOE’s 75-year history and most recently promoted to Vice President in 2023.
Beginning his career with the firm as a design project manager, Brandon managed more than 50 projects and 75,000 hours of professional services resulting in over $10 million in revenue. In 2019, Brandon was promoted to Division Manager, where he was responsible for operations and more than 110 employees across the Southeast U.S. and internationally in León, Mexico and Mumbai, India. In this role, he was charged with growing SSOE’s brand and market share across the Southeast U.S. Developing and executing a three-phased strategic plan, Brandon successfully achieved 15% year-over-year growth across the Southeast. At the same time, he was also appointed to lead the company’s venture into the battery manufacturing market. The result—SSOE has become one of the top battery plant design firms over the course of just three years, with more than 23 million SF of battery manufacturing facility design.
Matt Oberts, PE, LEED AP, Chief Operating Officer, Buildings and Industrial Facilities at SSOE, commented on Brandon’s achievements, stating, “Brandon’s unique leadership skills and expedient construction techniques developed during his nearly decade-long career as an Army engineering officer have positioned him well to lead multidisciplinary architecture and engineering teams in the delivery of large, billion-dollar electric vehicle assembly facilities and complex battery manufacturing plants.”
Oberts continues, stating, “But, what I find most impressive about Brandon is that in all his professional successes, he has not lost sight of his passion for serving his fellow veterans and community. Brandon was instrumental in forming SSOE’s now five-year partnership with the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation’s Hiring our Heroes program, sponsoring transitioning military veterans through 10-week internships. He also spends time giving back to primary-age students, presenting at elementary schools for STEM events, and coaching youth sports. Brandon truly embodies SSOE’s vision to design and build the future for our clients, colleagues, and communities and is beyond deserving of this high recognition.”
From the Classroom to the Front Lines
Brandon first began following his interest in engineering upon high school graduation, when he pursued a Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering while participating in the U.S. Army Reserve Officers’ Training Corps (ROTC) program at the University of Illinois. In 2007, he made the ROTC Distinguished Graduate’s List (top 5%) and as a result, was granted the opportunity to choose his army branch, selecting Engineers. Throughout his eight years in the Army, Brandon rose through the ranks starting as a Platoon Leader and ending his Army career as Company Commander, where he led the only U.S. Army Airborne Combat Engineer company in Europe.
Additionally, he graduated from multiple Army premier leadership institutions, including Ranger School, the Sapper Leader Course, and Airborne and Jumpmaster School while also earning his Master of Science in Engineering Management from Missouri University of Science and Technology. Brandon’s accolades include earning the Bronze Star Medal for his performance on a route clearance and explosive ordinance disposal mission in Iraq and the Defense Meritorious Service Medal for his work with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers on the design and construction of critical infrastructure including dams, power plants, and wastewater treatment facilities across the eastern half of Afghanistan.
For additional information about Building Design + Construction’s 40 Under 40 Class of 2023, click here.