The Deep Foundations Institute has appointed new leadership for four of the group’s 15 technical committees. Each committee deals with issues, techniques and technologies specific to an aspect of foundations construction or excavation.

DFI Axtell DFI Ellman
Axtell Ellman
DFI Ofori-Awuah DFI Seider
Ofori-Awuah Seider

DFI technical committees cover topics ranging from augered, cast-in-place piles to micropilings to tie-backs and soil nailing. Committees supervise developments within their areas of expertise and help keep DFI members and the industry at large apprised of current practices through publications, per-review papers, education and reports in Deep Foundations magazine. Click here to see a full list of the group’s technical committees.

The group appointed new leadership for committees on drilled shafts, marine foundations, seismic and lateral loads, and helical piles and tie-backs. The new chairs are:

  • Paul Axtell, PE, DGE, of Dan Brown and Associates PC, now heads the Drilled Shaft Committee. Axtell has served as lead foundation designer for major bridge projects around the United States. He graduated with a bachelor’s degree in engineering from the University of Missouri has a master’s of engineering from the University of Texas.
  • Roderic A. Ellman Jr., PE, a partner at Mueser Rutledge Consulting Engineers, will lead the Marine Foundations Committee. Ellman, who has worked with MRCE since 1980, has managed large-scale projects like the Woodrow Wilson Bridge and Route 9A Pedestrian Underpass. He graduated from the State University of New York and Polytechnic Institute of New York.
  • Kwabena Ofori-Awuah, PE, is a manager at KCI’s Geotechnical Engineering Practice. He will chair the Seismic and Lateral Loads Committee. Ofori-Awuah is currently the engineer of record for the new or remedial design of several dams, and has more than 27 years of experience in civil and geotechnical engineering. He has a bachelor’s from the University of Science and Technology in Ghana, a master’s from the University of New Mexico and a Ph.D from Virginia Tech.
  • Gary L. Seider, PE, serves as engineering manager for Hubbell/CHANCE Civil and Utility Helical Products, Hubbell Power Systems Inc., where he contributes to the development of helical and anchor pile products. He will lead the Helical Piles and Tiebacks Committee. Seider has a bachelor’s in mechanical engineering from the University of Missouri-Rolla.

The DFI is an international association of contractors, engineers, academics and suppliers in the deep foundations industry with more than 3,300 members worldwide. For more information about the Deep Foundations Institute, visit