Werner Gumpertz, co-founder of the Massachusetts-based engineering firm Simpson Gumpertz & Heger, and an Honorary Member of the Boston Society of Civil Engineers Section, has died at 99.
Gumpertz, P.E., F.ASCE, was one of three Massachusetts Institute of Technology professors who together established SGH in 1956. He led its building technology group until 1993, and never retired. He was known for putting together creative and enterprising teams of seasoned experts and bright students. SGH was ranked 114 on Engineering News-Record’s 2017 list of top 500 design firms.
“The lessons he taught us throughout his career – to apply scientific rigor and exacting standards to everything we do, to commit to a lifetime of continued learning, and to never take yourself too seriously – are as relevant now as they were when he founded our firm,” said Niklas Vigener, SGH senior principal and head of building technology.
Gumpertz began his path toward civil engineering at MIT in 1947, where he would go on to earn three degrees and be hired as an instructor. He received the 1987 ASTM International Walter C. Voss Award for his advancements in building technology. In 2003, BSCES named Gumpertz an Honorary Member for lifetime achievements.
Gumpertz was known for his love of the holiday season, including building gingerbread houses with his granddaughters and setting up his electric railroad every year. He died three weeks from his 100th birthday.