Business owners and developers often overlook the importance of geotechnical engineering. That’s why, in 1989, Fred Palmerton and Brad Parrish broke ground on their own engineering firm, Palmerton & Parrish, Inc. in St. Louis, MO. The business now focuses on subsurface investigation, construction material testing, and of course, geotechnical engineering. Along with other services- such as construction material testing, subsurface drilling, and environmental services- Palmerton & Parrish, Inc. are among the first on a construction site and employ over 60 individuals across many state lines.

The success of Palmerton and Parrish’s business has been growing steadily for the last 30 years. The amount of equipment necessary since its first small business set aside contract has grown. Through reinvestments in its existing resources, the company has been able to get better quality tools. Improvements in things such as their drilling fleet have allowed the company to offer more services to new clients. Contracts in themselves are helpful, as they force the company to expand its capabilities and resources, which allows it to better help other clients, and the cycle continues.

After 20 years in the business, however, there was still room for improvement. After securing a contract with the St. Louis District United States Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) in 2009, Palmerton & Parrish, Inc. was approached by the Missouri Procurement Technical Assistance Center (PTAC). Procurement specialist Allen Waldo saw the potential for continued growth and wanted to help Palmerton and Parrish achieve more.

Waldo immediately suggested for the company to create a business profile on the Small Business Administration (SBA) website. He also helped Palmerton and Parrish be more aware of the importance of keeping registrations updated and compliant. Over the last ten years, he has kept them accountable and notifies the company of any changes in regulations that might affect it.

“We appreciate PTAC’s sincere interest in the success and growth of our business,” said Rachel Goeke, Plant Services Manager. “Allen is always responsive and communicative. He is an asset to the Southwest Missouri business community and we appreciate his help.”

In 2013, Fred Palmerton retired from Palmerton & Parrish but left knowing the company was in good hands. Parrish, Goeke, and others continue to meet with Waldo annually. They have ample opportunities to ask questions and receive assistance throughout the year, and he keeps them on track with new regulations and changes. He also provides personal touches for the company, making sure they see emails and articles that might be helpful to them specifically.

“Allen is always helpful, and provides useful information pertaining to compliance, new federal requirements, and suggestions on the company’s marketing materials as they pertain to the pursuit of Federal work,” Goeke said. “He’s the glue that makes sure we’re consuming PTAC’s services as they become available.”

In 2019, Palmerton & Parrish celebrated 30 successful years in business. Their plan for the future is to keep doing what they’re doing but improve every day. They hope to continue to work with Waldo and PTAC. “We’re in the realm of planned organic growth,” said Goeke. “We want to grow as is necessitated by our client demands, but not grow just for the sake of growing.”