RESPEC is an integrated consulting and services firm with over 210 full-time employees and annual revenue over $30 million. Since our founding in 1969, RESPEC has remained committed to its original purpose of providing clients with high-quality technical and advisory services. Because of this commitment, we place particular emphasis on personnel experience and expertise, as well as the reliability and quality of our services. RESPEC currently has offices located throughout the central United States. Through outstanding contract performance, sound management and quality practices, and the application of appropriate technology, RESPEC has established a reputation as a responsive technical services provider that is sensitive to client needs.

Company details

3824 Jet Dr , Rapid City , South Dakota 57703-4757 USA
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Business Type:
Consulting firm
Industry Type:
Environmental Management
Market Focus:
Nationally (across the country)
Year Founded:
$1,000,000 US - $10,000,000 US

Corporate Values
We operate our business and implement our corporate strategy through our commitment to the following values:

  • Practice corporate and individual integrity which includes high ethical standards, honesty, accountability, and cooperation.
  • Develop passion, pride, and commitment to providing and solving problems for our clients with an entrepreneurial spirit.
  • Pursue excellence, best value, and high-quality professional services.
  • Promote employee growth and development through mentoring, continuing education, and professional organizations.
  • Provide an atmosphere for pleasant, positive, collaborative work environment, and authentic communication.

We are committed to building a high-performance team through our collective strengths, our dedication to our clients, and our collaborative spirit.

In 1969, a group of professors from the South Dakota School of Mines & Technology founded RESPEC to launch their vision of a professional consulting firm with expertise representing their diverse backgrounds in civil engineering, electrical engineering, mechanical engineering, mining engineering, and geological engineering. Their creation of RESPEC would provide graduates of the college with professional opportunities near their homes instead of requiring a move to another part of the country to pursue their chosen profession. The initial business opportunities pursued included water pollution studies, tunneling, mining, and related research.

During the 1970s, RESPEC won several contracts for research and the application of technology in the fields of geomechanics, numerical modeling, heat transfer, and fluid flow to solve practical problems in mining and civil engineering. RESPEC played a major role in the field of nuclear waste disposal for clients in the United States, Canada, Sweden, and Germany by offering innovative expertise in mining, regulatory analysis, permitting, instrumentation, testing machine fabrication, and data acquisition. Research was performed in such diverse projects as compressed air energy storage, the National Strategic Crude Oil Storage Program, in situ experiments, geothermal energy, materials testing, and in situ coal gasification. RESPEC developed its own computer programs for numerical analysis and simulations, including a three-dimensional finite element program for simulating heat conduction, while performing contracts for national laboratories, agencies of the federal government, and commercial clients.

In the 1980s, the corporate infrastructure was enhanced by formalizing policies and procedures; constructing a new office/laboratory facility in Rapid City; and opening offices in Albuquerque and Carlsbad, New Mexico. RESPEC developed a world-class materials testing laboratory for the testing of core samples from proposed sites for nuclear waste repositories. RESPEC participated in the development of a proposal to host the proposed Superconducting Super Collider and performed in situ measurements and analysis for the selected site in Texas. Sandia National Laboratories, Battelle Memorial Institute, and the Department of Energy all became major RESPEC clients. Nuclear waste disposal was still the major driving force for the company, but the market for information technologies created an opportunity for specialized expertise and more business opportunities. RESPEC recognized the need for computing power to solve large numerical problems and started using remote batch-entry stations to network with time-share facilities. With access to a CDC Star computer, RESPEC developed fast-processing, vectorized software to perform thermomechanical numerical analyses. RESPEC advanced to the leading edge of technology in computers with the purchase of one of the first super minicomputers, a Data General MV8000, and later upgraded to a Digital Equipment VAX 8300.

In the 1990s, with rapidly expanding expertise, RESPEC divided into three business areas: Engineering, Environmental, and Information Technologies. Offices were opened in Pierre, South Dakota, and St, Paul, Minnesota. Information Technologies grew to be the largest area of business. RESPEC began receiving meritorious recognition with national awards in the area of rock mechanics and an R&D 100 award for ATM encryption in conjunction with Sandia National Laboratories. RESPEC was chosen to evaluate the structural integrity of Mt. Rushmore in South Dakota and Stone Mountain in Georgia using its expertise in rock mechanics. RESPEC’s 25 years of support to the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant (WIPP) Project helped completion of the compliance certification documentation to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and readied the facility for operation and receipt of radioactive waste. New clients in the commercial sector were added because of our experience in the area of underground storage of hydrocarbons and unparalleled salt mechanics expertise. RESPEC became an employee-owned company with the buyout of the founders who had realized the vision they had set in motion almost 25 years earlier.

In the twenty-first century, RESPEC continues to grow its capabilities and technological edge through new hires and acquisition. Because of the changing demand of our clients, the Environmental Division was refocused and became the Water & Natural Resources Division. Vice Presidents were named for each of the three business divisions. With today’s accelerated pace of activities, it is more important than ever to be responsive and to streamline processes when possible. To respond to the accelerated pace of today’s business world, RESPEC pursued and was awarded a GSA Federal Schedule contract that can be used by federal and state governmental entities. To expand our capabilities and diversify our client base, RESPEC acquired POD, Inc., a proven information technology firm with high-end talent recognized for their capabilities and unique solutions. POD also had in place a State of New Mexico Pricing Agreement for IT services to complement RESPEC’s State of New Mexico Pricing Agreement for environmental services. These contract vehicles allow a quick response to the needs of our clients by significantly shortening the procurement cycle. Our clients recognize the talents of the employees/owners of RESPEC and the value created through Strategic Partnerships and Alliances. Our clients have come to expect extraordinary results from an extraordinary company!