Design Award Judges

The Steel Joist Institute would like to thank each of the judges for their participation in the 2010 – 2019 Design Awards.

Design Award Judge, G. Wayne Studebaker of Norfolk, Neb.G. Wayne Studebaker, P.E., WAHA Engineering, Norfolk, Neb.
Studebaker is retired after 40 years at Nucor Corporation, where he served as sales engineer, engineering manager, research manager, and general manager of research and development. He spent four years as bridge design engineer with the Missouri Highway Department. Studebaker served as chairman of the research committee for the Steel Joist Institute for 35 years.


Design Award Judge, Robert Neumann of Milwaukee, WIRobert J. Neumann, Computerized Structural Design S.C., Milwaukee
Neumann is project manager for Computerized Structural Design S.C., where he has been employed since 1979. He obtained his Wisconsin registration as an architect in 1987 and is a past member of the American Institute of Architects. His familiarity with construction materials and detailing has led to investigations of material and system failures.



Design Award Judge, Richard Phaneuf of Sarasota, Fla.Richard A. Phaneuf, P.E., Steel Joist Engineering, Sarasota, Fla.
Phaneuf is currently a structural steel design engineer for buildings and bridges in private practice. Previously, he served as director of engineering for various steel joist manufacturers. During a 16 year period, he was active on various Steel Joist Institute committees, including serving as chairman of the engineering practice committee. A graduate of Tufts University, he has assisted architects and engineers in development of standard and non-standard steel joist structures.


Sam Mahdavi, P.E., Structural Engineering, Cairo, GA.
Mahdavi is founder and current president of United Structures. Previously, he served as president of Quincy Joist Co. Sam received a Masters Degree in Structural Engineering from the University of Missouri-Rolla. During his time in the steel joist industry at Quincy Joist, Sam was on several Technical Committees, served on the Executive Committee and is a past president of the Steel Joist Institute.