Meet Our New Principals and Associates

Freese and Nichols has elected nine new Principals and 19 new Associates. Principals and Associates are leaders of the firm who have made proven contributions in technical expertise, business development and management. Together, they represent 13 different offices across FNI. All these individuals have contributed greatly to the success of our company.

At Freese and Nichols, Principals and Associates are recognized leaders who live our LEADS values every day and have proven expertise in one or more of the core company functions: technical excellence, sales and marketing, or management and personnel development. Electing Principals and Associates is one of our many ways we recognize outstanding accomplishments of our employees ​​​​​​​and provide opportunities for growth.


Kim Buckley is the 1170 Environmental Science North Texas Group Manager in Fort Worth. She has been with FNI 21 years, serving a key role in transforming Environmental from a “support” group into a practice. Her cross-practice technical expertise is deep, having managed more than 100 projects across Texas and Oklahoma. Nationally, she has served on the ASTM International E50 Subcommittee for environmental site assessments for last 10 years. Additionally, she helped contribute to 2022 Environmental bookings of $12M+.

​​​​​​​Chuck Gilman is Practice Leader for Program Management and is based in Houston. He has been with FNI 2 years, with 24 years in the industry. His technical expertise in PM services is recognized by clients and staff across regions. His contributions include managing the NTMWD Sister Grove WWTP Program CM Services, positioning with the Port of Galveston, Lubbock, New Braunfels, and exceeding 2022 booking goals by 35%. He has been key in assisting emerging markets in Florida and Kansas.

Rich Heine is Group Manager for 1132 PMCM WGC in Houston. He has been with FNI 19 years, serving as an excellent mentor and coach to staff. In addition to PMCM, he has made a positive impact to our water/wastewater master planning business, led ACEC award-winning projects, serves as a trusted client rep, and built our CM group from scratch in Houston.

​​​​​​​Jim Heydorn serves as Assistant Division Manager for FNI’s Southeast Region, based in Atlanta. He has been with FNI 4 years, with 32 years in the industry. Leveraging his knowledge of the clients in the Atlanta market and his reputation for delivering excellence, he has contributed to key wins with DeKalb County and others helping to increase Georgia’s overall sales.  He also contributes with his breadth of technical expertise and has been instrumental in providing leadership and operational excellence for the region.

​​​​​​​Brandon Huxford is Group Manager for 1190 Transportation Central Plains and is known as the Roundabout expert in the company. He has been with FNI 14 years, is based in Oklahoma City, and is experienced in both traffic engineering and transportation design. He has been instrumental in growing our transportation business in Oklahoma, serving as an effective consultant for strategic accounts OTA, ODOT, others.

David Munn is Group Manager for 1168 Water/Wastewater Treatment WGC in Houston. He has been with FNI 4 years, more than doubling his group size and his group’s labor revenues. He has led the development and execution of two national treatment-based regulatory services: AWIA and Lead & Copper compliance. Dedicated to developing his staff, David received the Lee B. Freese Mentoring Award in 2020.

Robb Otey is an Engineer VII within the 1112 Transmission and Utilities West group, based in Fort Worth. He has 9 years with FNI, and 23 years in the industry and is considered our most senior expert in large-diameter wastewater pipelines, bolstering FNI’s capabilities and being seen a national-level expert. He serves as a Project Manager, as well as the Practice’s STP and Senior Advisor. He is credited as the principal author for updates to 2 of WEF’s national Manuals of Practice.

​​​​​​​Tony Pevec is Group Manager for 1187 Florida Engineering in Tampa. He has been with FNI 3 years, with 21 years in the industry. He is known for his technical experience in Treatment, specifically in the field of biosolids and odor control. He is a successful group manager and is adept at building client relationships and helping the FNI Team win new work. He also has been one of the instrumental leaders helping Florida surpass its 3-year goals and KFIs.

Jason Ward is Group Manager for 1150 Transmission and Utilities WGC in Houston. He has been with FNI 17 years and is strong technically in large diameter pipelines and pump stations. He has also contributed to expanding our stormwater and tunneling services. Jason has excelled in both project & people management, having successfully managed large, complex, multi-discipline projects, as well as mentoring early-career project managers.


Dustin Blaylock, Transportation, Fort Worth

Andrea Bryant, Transportation, Austin

Juan Bujanos, Sales, Brownsville

Keith Byrne, Stormwater, Fort Worth

Viraj deSilva, Treatment, Tampa

Jeremy Dixon, Stormwater, Dallas

JB Ferguson, Transportation, Pearland

Morgan McIlwain, Program Management, Raleigh

Kira Iles, Treatment, Transmission and Utilities, Austin

Stephen Johnson, Water/Wastewater Master Planning, Fort Worth

Mat Leclair, Stormwater, Houston

Brittney Mahlum, Marketing, Fort Worth

Muna Mitchell, Structural, Austin

Ryan Ramsey, Treatment, Transmission and Utilities, San Marcos

Nina Reins, Water Resources Design, New Orleans

Jim Riney, Human Resources, Fort Worth

David Rivera, Stormwater, Frisco

Dane Schneider, Stormwater, Houston

Lisa Vitale, Environmental/Coastal, Austin