Indian American CEO gives dirt its due

Thursday, 20 November 2003, 08:00 Hrs
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WASHINGTON: An Indian American soil specialist has given dirt its due -- turning his knowledge of geology into a multimillion-dollar business!

Allahabad-born Dhirendra Swarup "Sax" Saxena is president and CEO of ASC Geosciences, headquartered in Lakeland, Florida.

Saxena is a geotechnical engineer, a soil specialist who helps developers determine the makeup of the ground they intend to build on and how to engineer a solid foundation.

Saxena, 63, has invested a lifetime in the science of soils. ASC Geosciences employs 80 people and has branch offices in six states.

A graduate of the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Kanpur, he migrated to the United States via Canada. He went on to study at Technical University of Nova Scotia, Canada, when he got a scholarship.

His first job took him to Orlando, where he took soil samples during the earliest stages of Walt Disney World.

Saxena, who uses the nickname Sax, has left much of the operation to his two sons, Anu and Jay, leaving him time to concentrate on especially challenging projects that require his expertise in soil mechanics. The firm also specialises in the broader field of environmental engineering, which incorporates other elements such as water and air.

Saxena's reputation has grown so far and wide that architects working for the University of South Florida employed him in the university's search for a new Lakeland campus.

His firm is currently working on a project at Lakeland Regional Medical Centre, which is adding a 300-bed wing.

The weight of the nine-storey tower rests on Saxena's reputation, which merits praise from some of his peers.

Other Saxena projects in recent years include the Turkey Point Nuclear Power Plant near Homestead, the World Marriott Resort at Lake Buena Vista and more than a dozen airport improvement jobs throughout the state, including Lakeland, Bartow and Winter Haven.

From his corporate perch Saxena can view one of the city's more pastoral scenes -- Lake Wire and its burgeoning stock of swans and other birds. He speaks of Lakeland with reverence.

It fits his persona -- dynamic yet laidback and family friendly, according to a report in the Ledger, published from Lakeland, Florida.

Lately he has taken to philanthropy to compensate the community and his adopted country for his good fortune of the past 20 years since setting up his business out of his home garage.

The Saxena Family Foundation supports a variety of good causes, such as the children's wing at Lakeland Regional Medical Centre, and a lecture series.
Source: IANS
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