Pictured on the left, Ethan Bradshaw–civil engineer and Black Hawk pilot–joined our Richmond office as a staff engineer last summer with both a Master of Civil Engineering degree and a six-year stint in the Army National Guard under his belt. He had always wanted to enlist in the military as a young man, driven by a sense of adventure, the opportunity to serve his country, and a practical means to support his college education. The dream became a reality as he jumped feet first into the Army National Guard and underwent basic training while earning a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering at the University of Virginia (UVA).
In 2014, Ethan went a step further in pursuit of his passion for flying, attending flight school in Alabama where he progressed to piloting UH-60 Black Hawks. It was there, during his first solo flight, that he experienced one of the highlights of his flying career to date. Paired up with only one fellow flight student and with no instructor on board, he was en route to Troy Airport when the duo experienced “lost commo” on their UHF radio. Unable to contact the airport in order to enter the controlled airspace, Ethan had to navigate in a makeshift holding pattern as they troubleshot, monitoring their fuel numbers. Neither had been in that situation before but continued troubleshooting until they were able to contact Troy on another frequency and land safely, as the post-landing photo attests.
Back on the ground at UVA, that same knack for problem-solving spurred Ethan to earn a master’s degree. There he was able to explore his geotechnical interests, a focus sparked as an undergrad after discovering a penchant for soil. Ethan loves diving into interesting work in the Richmond office and satisfying his sense of adventure out in the field while continuing to set aside time to fly each week. Navigating the world of geotechnical engineering and flight have provided him with a challenge and the chance to push his boundaries both on the ground and in the air.
Schnabel is proud to serve as the foundation for Ethan’s career takeoff, and in keeping with May 2017 being National Military Appreciation Month, we thank him for his service.