The Deep Foundations Institute (DFI) announced that its 40th annual Conference on Deep Foundations had more than 900 attendees, a record for the group. The event, held Oct. 12-15, 2015 in Oakland, Calif., featured a range of foundation drilling industry technical presentations and exhibitors.

In a release, the DFI said highlights of the event included a “mega projects” session, which focused on national infrastructure challenges and featured mentions of California’s high-speed rail plans, the Transbay Transit Center and the Panama Canal Pacific Access Channel. Guest speakers included Oakland Mayor Libby Schaff, Oakland A's General Manager Billy Beane and Kenji Ishihara, a professor at Chuo University and world-renowned expert on earthquake geotechnology.

The event also christened the group’s new Legends Awards, which honor contributions to research, design, construction, manufacturing and use of deep foundations. The inaugural recipients were:

  • Contractor Legend: Charles Berkel, chairman of the board of Berkel & Company Contractors Inc., a charter member of the DFI.
  • Engineering Legend: George J. Tamaro, consultant with Mueser Rutledge Consulting Engineers, a noted expert on slurry wall and tieback technology.
  • Manufacturer/Supplier Legend: Davide Trevisani, president and founder of TREVI Group.

Other awards bestowed at the event included:

  • The Outstanding Project Award was presented to Caltrans and the T.Y. Lin International/ Moffatt & Nichol Joint Venture for their work on the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge New East Span.
  • The Distinguished Service Award, DFI’s highest award to an individual, was presented to Bernie Hertlein, FACI, M.ASCE, of GEI Consultants and a DFI Trustee.
  • The 2015 C. William Bermingham Innovation Award was presented to the Gerald Desmond Bridge “Cast-in-Drilled-Hole Grout Delivery System” SFI JV team, which included Shimmick Construction Co. Inc., FCC Construction S.A. and Impregilo SpA.

See photos from the 2015 event at

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