2023 40 Under 40: Erin Popa, PE, LEED AP BD+C, 33
Associate Principal, HVAC Engineer, BR+A Consulting Engineers; MAE, Architectural Engineering, Penn State University
A powerhouse in the industry, Popa has been making a difference since college. Popa graduated from Penn State University with an integrated bachelor’s and master’s of architectural engineering and an architectural studies minor from the Pantheon Institute in Rome. As a project manager at BR+A, it is role to lead external and internal mechanical, electrical and plumbing (MEP) communication and coordination among trades with architects, owners, contractors and other project consultants to deliver high-performing MEP designs that align with schedule, budget and building performance goals. In addition to project manager, Popa is the leading HVAC engineer for the projects and works with other staff members to develop HVAC system designs that are both environmentally responsible and resilient for the critical operation and function of the buildings. Key projects include several college/university buildings, health care facilities and research laboratories. As an associate principal, Popa works with her colleagues and senior management at BR+A to improve internal processes including the training of younger and new staff, developing project delivery and design standards and promoting company moral and camaraderie. Outside of the office, Popa enjoys walking 18 holes with her push-cart while talking to her fellow golf friends, working out or running every day and trying new recipes to host her friends and family for dinner parties.