For Ron Carroll, owner and Managing Principal of ATON LLC, an environmental consulting and engineering firm and valued Land Science® client, choosing a career in environmental remediation was both a personal and professional choice. That’s because when he was younger, Mr. Carroll lived near and had friends who were impacted by the Times Beach dioxin cleanup project in the St. Louis area. As a result of toxic chemicals being mixed with oil and applied to roads for dust control, a massive cleanup was initiated in a small town in St. Louis County. Consequently, the EPA ended up buying many of the homes within the town to facilitate an effective cleanup in the area. Understandably, this environmental hazard and subsequent remediation project left an indelible impression on Mr. Carroll, and he eventually pursued and earned a B.S. in Environmental and Hazardous Materials Management, and a B.A. in Biology, from the University of Findlay. In addition to his university degrees, he also became a Certified Hazardous Materials Manager and Certified Industrial Hygienist. His university studies and professional work experience that followed would eventually culminate in forming ATON, where he oversees the firm’s business activities. He shares, “I’m responsible for managing our environmental, health and safety consulting work, and all administrative operations. I also conduct and oversee site inspections, multi-media sampling, coordination and negotiation with regulatory agencies, facility decommissioning, demolition, and regulatory reporting.” Prior to forming ATON eight years ago, Mr. Carroll held management positions with a national due diligence and real estate assessment company performing environmental, building sciences, and valuation services; and a national environmental engineering consulting firm that provided site investigation, industrial hygiene, remediation, and regulatory compliance services.
When asked what he likes most about his work, Mr. Carroll points to the benefits that result from consistent teamwork. He continues, “I enjoy interacting on a daily basis with our employees and clients to find sound technical solutions to challenging problems. I also take satisfaction as a mentor to technical staff and as a trusted advisor to our clients in the commercial and industrial sectors.” And the most challenging aspect of his work? “Keeping track of ever-changing regulations and how those regulations affect our business and our clients’ business. While it can be challenging, we feel we’re well-equipped. We’re looking to continue our growth organically by adding key technical staff and expanding geographically. We also see the redevelopment of brownfields as a significant growth area for the company.” When it comes to working with Land Science, Mr. Carroll appreciates the combination of innovative solutions and service ATON receives on a consistent basis. He continues, “Land Science continues to provide a quality product with seamless technical expertise, and this helps in the design and implementation phases of our remedial work. We were recently involved in the relocation and development of a large scale, commercial laundry operation in the St. Louis region that involved the construction of a building over a former chemical plant that is highly regulated by the EPA. The success of the redevelopment using Land Science products led to the continued development of industrial warehouse space near the former plant. In essence, the Land Science solutions form a complete package that typically exceeds our design specifications.”
Residing in St. Louis, with his wife and two children, Mr. Carroll likes to spend his free time with his family, enjoying the outdoors, traveling, and attending various sporting events. “We have a great baseball team, the St. Louis Cardinals,” he says, “and the Stanley Cup hockey champs, the St. Louis Blues.” He also finds time to give back to his community as a volunteer for Habitat for Humanity. To stay abreast of emerging trends and new technologies, ATON offers all its employees continuing education and technical training for environmental, health & safety (EHS) consulting and remediation work. When asked how he he’s seen the industry change, his focus turns to the advancements made possible through innovation. He continues, “We’ve seen technical innovation working its way into what historically has been a labor-intensive industry. In the past we’ve relied on field sample collection and off-site analysis for environmental contaminants. More recently, we’re able to use smaller and lighter field instruments to detect and analyze contaminant concentrations without having to send samples to a laboratory. In addition, innovations in data collection and management have allowed us to compile data and issue reports much quicker, which in turn allows our clients to make more informed and faster decisions on tight timeframes.” Asked what he sees the future holds for environmental remediation, he feels the consulting side of the business will continue to grow. He shares, “We see the traditional EHS consulting field continuing with strong growth. The environmental remediation industry also continues to grow through local, state, and national brownfield development initiatives.” And how would he encourage others to join his field of study? He concludes, “Education and training in STEM are keys to our success and growth. I would encourage others interested in science and the environmental field to become STEM practitioners and supporters as a way to enter this industry.”
Land Science is proud to have Ron Carroll, Managing Principal of ATON, as a valued client and partner in environmental remediation, and appreciates his vast experience and knowledge base in providing successful remediation outcomes for Land Science and its clients.