John R. Kotes

July 14, 2016

John R. Kotes, a 2008 civil engineering graduate, stands near massive mammoet jacks supporting an electrical bridge module on Sasol LCCP on the gulf coast of Louisiana.

John R. Kotes (BS CIV EGR ‘08), originally from St. Clair Shores, is a field civil construction engineer based out of Fluor Corporations home office in Sugar Land, Texas. Fluor Corporation is one of a few global companies capable of executing large and complex Engineering, Procurement, Fabrication Construction and Maintenance projects worldwide. Fluor is a FORTUNE 500 company, ranking No. 155 of America's largest corporations in 2015, and Ranking No. 1 in the Engineering & Construction industry of the FORTUNE Magazine "World's Most Admired Companies" list for five years in a row, 2012-2016. 

Kotes started his career with Fluor in August 2011 and will earn his five-year employment recognition pin in 2016. 

So far in his career, Kotes has successfully completed a 2.5-year assignment in the Outback of Australia (2011-2013) working on a liquefied natural gas (LNG) project as a civil/roads construction engineer. He is currently on assignment working as a civil quality assurance construction engineer on the Sasol LCCP, a petrochemical project in Lake Charles, Louisiana. 

He is an associate member, and soon to be member, of the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) as part of the ASCE Construction Institute and International Society of Soil Mechanics and Geotechnical Engineering organizations. 

Along with a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering (2008) from MSU, he earned a master’s degree in civil engineering (2011) from Wayne State University. 

While still an engineering student at MSU, Kotes participated in the Multidisciplinary Education Abroad Program in Volgograd, Russia, taking CE 305 Structural Analysis. 

“It was an excellent way to test yourself by leaving your surroundings, maintain focus, and execute the objective of passing your CE course work in a different environment,” he said. 

Kotes noted it also gave him an opportunity to list the unique education abroad experience on his CV, giving him an international travel advantage since the construction industry often requires travel to unfamiliar areas where the project can be located.


More from John R. Kotes -- 

The Santos Gladstone Liquid Natural Gas (GLNG) is a multibillion-dollar Megaproject consisting of three hub compressor stations located within a 60 km radius in the Outback of Australia. The overall scope of work consisted of drilling and constructing more than 250 well pads that extracted natural gas via fracking the coal mineral deposits and extracting a clean, rich methane gas which would then go through a separator system (separating the gas from the contaminated ground water). The process would then travel through newly installed water and gas lines to the respective hub location(s), store the contaminated water in multiple 300+ Mega liter brine ponds to safely contain for evaporation, or process through a water treatment plant inside the hub(s) for use of potable water. The gas would be transferred from each well pad to the respective hub. In the process the gas would change its chemical state from a gas to liquid at the hubs via liquefying at sub zero temperatures for compression purposes. This LNG would then be transported through a 200-mile gas transmission pipeline to Gladstone, Australia, for further compression treatment before shipment to customers in southern Asia as a source of energy to local homes and businesses. Kotes has worked on evaluating, testing and selecting the embankment fill material for six of the brine ponds at his particular assignment location under a few senior civil engineers supervision, developing over 50 km of class A roads both of heavy haul for project equipment delivery and internal client use inside the hub for two of the three hub locations, as well as working with surveyors on site prep drawings, engineering and testing of soil material for project use, monitoring pile testing and installing activities, inspecting reinforcement steel for structural foundations and inspecting major concrete pours.

Checkout a two-minute YouTube video by searching for "Where does Santos GLNG Operate 2016."

The Sasol LCCP is also a multibillion-dollar Megaproject awarded to Fluor as a joint venture with the partnership of world leaders in project management, engineering and construction for the energy industry, Technip. This petrochemical project is also involving the fracking process by pulling ethane gas from the ground and steam cracking the gas to break the molecules apart for storing and transporting. Ethane is a building block to produce plastic materials, detergents and other cleaning products for consumer use. Currently, Kotes has been working on the Ethylene Oxide/Ethylene Glycol area of the project as well as managing multiple contractors on upgrading and expanding a two-mile, heavy haul road from the project site to the Calcasieu river on the gulf coast in southwest Louisiana. This road upgrade is under development for Sasol as well as LADOTD in means of heavy haul transport deliveries from the docking area where all the equipment is being delivered from (in particular Asian countries) to the site. As one can imagine, this part of the project is on the critical path for overall project progress, which is targeting completion in 2019.

John R. Kotes spent 2 1/2 years on assignment in the Outback of Australia in 2011-2013, working as a civil/roads engineer.