RPO, Inc. is extremely proud to be marking its 30th anniversary. In 1987, after leaving his position as the Director of the Mayor's Traffic and Construction Coordinating Council at the New York City Department of Transportation, Richard J. Pressel, P.E. founded RPO Incorporated.

Richard's attention to detail, unconventional problem solving skills, and reputation as an honest guy who is a straight shooter served him well starting out.  Business leaders and friends supported him, and contractor clients flocked to RPO to have his watchful eyes on their projects.  Shortly thereafter, Ginette Celestin, a former colleague of Richard's at the Department of Transportation, joined him bringing her vast knowledge of the DOT procedures into the fold.  Together they focused on creating new systems to streamline their performance of DOT services to contractors City-wide.

Meanwhile, Richard's son, Michael Pressel, had been cutting his teeth in the construction business.  Three years after Richard founded RPO, Michael joined him upon graduating college with a Bachelor of Business Administration degree with dual majors in Finance and Management.  At this point the business expanded into other agencies, began broadening its repertoire of services, and recruited the brightest and best minds in the business. 

The RPO team of engineers, lawyers and highly experienced industry experts applied their collective knowledge and successfully took on numerous challenging projects - along the way gaining a reputation for being a shop that can handle all matters of all levels of complexity.  That recognition has led to Michael and other staff members being invited as guest lecturers and speakers at the Columbia Graduate School of Engineering, NYS Bar Association, and numerous corporate seminars.


Fast forward 30 years, and many of the familiar faces that our clients have come to depend on at RPO are still at it.  Richard has since retired, but from time to time he takes on assignments as an independent consultant.  Ginette is still reliably acting as a liaison for DOT matters, and the rest of the firm has continued to offer more and more services while honing the tools and procedures that create the efficiencies and dependability our clients have come to depend on.  RPO now offers a broad array of services including zoning/code consulting, filing all types of projects at the DOB, DEP, DOT, FDNY, DSBS and other agencies, obtaining all types of permits and renewals, performing T/CO services, and representing our clients to answer construction violations.  We also prepare and file Temporary Places of Assembly, Site Safety Plans, Occupant Protection Plans and more. 

This milestone provides us with an opportunity to reflect on our past and to look forward to the future.  RPO is rooted in Richard Pressel's values of combining the most industrious solutions with the best possible client service and the highest level of integrity.  He set the bar high and the entire team tries hard to meet his standards every single day. We are grateful for Richard's guidance and leadership, and for our exceptionally bright and motivated team.  But most of all we are grateful to our friends and clients who entrust us with their important projects and who have made RPO the success it is today - 30 years after it was founded. 

Now, a note from Michael Pressel.

It is incredible how quickly time passes.  When I chat with my dad, our conversations invariably turn to business.  We discuss the jobs of the day and then reminisce about the countless jobs we have been involved with in the past.  There have been so many problems and a corresponding number of solutions.  Over the years there were growing pains and many changes on the road to building our "A-Team."  Along the way we developed tools and protocols to mesh with our service philosophy that have helped us earn the trust, respect and repeat business of our many clients. 

Reflecting back over the past few decades it is clear to me that the success of this company stems from:

  1. (First and foremost) The values, guidance, leadership and hard work instilled by the company founder and my dad - Richard Pressel, PE,

  2. Assembly of a team that appreciates and holds his values to a high standard,

  3. The collective support we receive from our families,

  4. Investing back in the business to acquire the best tools and attract the best talent, and

  5. The trust and respect of our loyal clients.

If I had to add a sixth point, it would definitely be "luck."  We have been lucky to enjoy a booming economy and lucky to have an excellent team.

So, on this very auspicious occasion I would like to congratulate my father and the entire RPO team on many jobs well done, and to thank them, our families and our clients for contributing to the success of RPO during the past 30 years. Cheers,


Michael Pressel