The Atlas Ethos

We’re drawn to complicated, multidisciplinary, and exotic challenges that require a flexible mindset.

Our team delights in solving the hardest engineering problems and shares a conviction that Geotechnical is the most interesting of the engineering disciplines. Taking on these challenges is fun for us. These projects get us fired up and engaged. If this sounds like your cup of tea, and you think you might be a good fit here, please contact us.

Learn more about our engineering philosophy, values, and what makes Atlas a singular geotechnical engineering firm.

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Doug Schwarm

Chief Engineer

Doug founded Atlas Geotechnical in 2004 when he decided to leave the comforts of corporate engineering firms, and the continental US, to live on Maui. Working throughout the Pacific, he confirmed that his purposeful approach is exceptionally effective on waterfront structures, industrial facilities, neglected dams, deep excavations, and heavy machine foundations. He worked on projects in Palau, Diego Garcia, Guam, Majuro, and across the Hawaiian islands. Returning to the mainland in 2009, Doug focused on working for Contractors and Operators and tackling the most challenging problems. At Atlas Geotechnical, Doug has the job that he wished for when he was 6: he plays in the dirt with giant trucks and cranes, goes on adventures to far-flung places, and enjoys the camaraderie of a great group of like-minded engineers.

Mike Little

Project Engineer

Based in St. Louis, Missouri, Mike is a passionate Cardinals fan and outdoor adventurer.  He earned a B.S. in Geology from the University of Missouri Rolla, a Geotechnical Engineering MS from UC Berkeley, and finished the trifecta with a Ph.D. in Ellen Rathje’s group at UT Austin.  His doctoral research utilized advanced numerical methods to predict lateral spread displacements using data from the Christchurch earthquake.  Between his MS and PhD Mike spent time behind a drill rig logging geotechnical borings all over the Midwest.  He brings some unique skills to the Atlas crew including advanced data analysis using Python and open-source GIS data visualization tools.

Dave O’Day

Geotechnical Engineer

Mr. O’Day has over four decades of experience in heavy geotechnical engineering, project management, and construction management on significant civil projects worldwide. Through his pragmatic, thoughtful approach and extensive experience, he has delivered successful projects all around the Pacific and in Russia, Chile, Colombia, Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, Iran, Guam, and the Middle East. He is the resident engineer at the Horseshoe Bend Hydroelectric Project in Idaho, and joins Atlas when we have a particularly challenging assignment.

Haley King

Logistics Manager

As the company’s Logistics Manager, Haley ensures internal operations are kept running smoothly from top to bottom. Having earned her bachelor’s degree in theatrical production from Whitman College in May of 2020 with emphasis on costume design and construction, Haley was thrilled to find another outlet for her creative analysis and problem-solving skills, and takes delight in the new challenges presented in her work at Atlas.

Could This Be You?

We're Hiring

When we ask our engineers what it’s like to work at Atlas, they typically say something like, “None of my engineering friends have a job like this.” If you’re a mentally flexible infrastructure engineer who is looking for one meaningful, rewarding, and unusual challenge after another, please contact us. You might be just the person we’re looking for.


We are an intentionally small core crew with the ability to add specialists to our team as needed. Through solving uncommon engineering problems for decades, we’ve met a vast number of experts in related fields that we draw on when their specific knowledge is required. It’s not every day that we need a cartographer or a welding inspector, but not only do we have these people in our contacts list, we’re good enough friends that they almost always agree to join our team at a moment’s notice.

Some of the clutch players available to join our team include:

  • Phil Myers, who literally wrote the book on aboveground storage tanks.
  • We often collaborate with Dr. Steve Dickenson, an internationally acclaimed geotechnical earthquake engineer who we’ve known since 1987.
  • We just completed our first project with Frank Pita, one of the leading dewatering experts in the Northwest.
  • Dave Roggenkamp has been designing weld details and foundation reinforcement for us for over a decade. 

Having access to this talented pool of specialists lets us to scale to meet the challenges of any project that intrigues us.