Growing up near St. Louis, Todd Miller originally wanted to design roller coasters, so much so that it led him to a physics degree from Illinois State University and a Civil/Structural engineering degree from the University of Illinois.
And while his education never led Miller to an amusement park’s high and winding rails, it did lead him to a career that has spanned more than 20 years of experience in design, management and execution of food and beverage, consumer products and industrial projects.
He entered the industry in 1997 and joined Benham in 2009. He was working as a Sr. Design Manger / Program Manager in 2016, overseeing the design and integration of the complex 1,800-bottle-per-minute Anheuser-Busch Aluminum Beverage Bottle Manufacturing Line #7 in Jacksonville, Florida, when Benham was acquired by Haskell.
“When we started the project, Benham was responsible for the process portion of the project, and Haskell was responsible for the facility portion,” Miller said. “We started the project separately and finished the project as one company.”
Construction was performed within a brownfield environment while the existing manufacturing facility continued operations. The project was executed on time and at budget including a complex startup and commissioning effort. In 2018, the project was awarded the National Merit Award by the Design-Build Institute of America, as well as the Associated Builders and Contractors’ Eagle Award.
Benham’s extensive experience with Anheuser-Busch helped the project run smoothly, and so did the integration of services created by collaboration with its new parent company.
“The industry demands the need to continuously shorten the project delivery cycle from design through construction and execution,” Miller said. “Through various types of modularization, we’ve been able to shorten that window of time significantly.”
Miller has worked as a Sr. Project Manager and Account Manager for clients such as Anheuser-Busch, Monsanto, DuPont, and Church & Dwight.
And while he has worked on several milestone corn and cotton seed-production facilities for Monsanto, overseeing the design of a state-of-the-art cotton-seed-processing facility in Lubbock, Texas, may have been the highest-profile. The 500,000 square feet production facility set on 200 acres serves as the primary hub for all of Monsanto’s cotton-seed processing operations.
Now Haskell’s Managing Director for the St. Louis office, Miller understands the value to clients of complex, high-quality, and cost-effective designs. Combining engineering and design that is in line with correct pricing is key to ensuring projects gain approval.
“From an engineering perspective, finding the balance between the amount of engineering required to be able to support project execution is critical,” he said. “At the end of the day, our clients are looking for phased project development that yields cost surety early in the process. Understanding that balance is critically important.”
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