“I really enjoy the diversity of the work that I encounter here at GES. No project or site is alike and every day brings new challenges and learning experience. The nature of our work allows me to get out in the field often, which helps to keep me sharp and in touch with the team when planning or making critical project decisions.”
Senior Project Manager
Eric Popken is a Senior Project Manager in our Buffalo, New York office. He joined GES in 2006 as a Junior Geologist and quickly emerged as a “go-to” resource for our Northeast operations team, earning the trust of several key GES clients in the region. His knack for problem solving and responsive client service propelled his growth into his current leadership role.
Eric currently facilitates the management of a portfolio of sites under a statewide environmental services contract for the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation. The contract has opened the door to a number of challenging and rewarding opportunities, including Eric’s favorite project to date—a site investigation for an inactive landfill containing wastes from the highly-publicized Love Canal Superfund site in western New York. He led a team in the delineation of soil and groundwater impacts and the identification of exposure pathways related to residential properties surrounding the site. The project provided Eric with the chance to play a role in a landmark environmental project he read about so often in school.
Prior to GES, Eric gained valuable experience in the field and in the classroom. He received a Bachelor of Science and Master of Science in Geology. The interrelationship of the sciences, technology, and construction attracted Eric to a career in the environmental field. During his graduate studies, Eric worked under a fully funded research assistantship, collecting baseline groundwater levels and analytical samples on behalf of a local limestone quarry. He learned how to prepare and run the samples using the schools laboratory equipment and prepared periodic reports for the quarry. He also gained experience in the field working as an entry-level geologist for a local drilling company.
Did you know?
Eric has made the rare transition as an athlete from the ice to the pickleball court. A former amateur hockey goalie, he now tests his cat-like reflexes in the growing game of pickleball, a sport that combines the basic elements of tennis (ground net), badminton (court size), and ping pong (large paddle rather than a strung racquet). During the summer months, Eric and his wife like to hitch-up their mini-camper and hit the open road towards the many scenic parks and campgrounds in the region. When western New York winters set in, they like to plan a trip down to the Caribbean. Now that’s smart planning!