Neel-Schaffer announces leadership promotions, changes

JACKSON, Miss. (January 9, 2024) – Neel-Schaffer is excited to announce several key leadership updates effective from January 1, 2024.

Chris Sellers, PE, was promoted to Executive Vice President and East Region Manager. Previously the Assistant East Region Manager, Chris will now manage 10 offices spanning Alabama, Tennessee, Georgia, South Carolina, and Florida.

Executive Vice President Melinda McGrath will now oversee the firm’s Mississippi and Louisiana offices as the Central Region Manager. Chris and Melinda were also both appointed to the firm’s Board of Directors.

Melinda, who joined Neel-Schaffer in March 2023, has almost four decades of engineering and senior management experience, including 30 years with the Mississippi Department of Transportation, where she served as Executive Director for a decade. She is based in the firm’s Jackson office.

Chris joined Neel-Schaffer in 1999 and has 25 years of experience as an engineer and manager. He is based in Neel-Schaffer’s Birmingham (AL) office.

In addition to these appointments, we are excited to announce that Senior Vice President Nick Ferlito, PE, PTOE, is stepping into the role of Louisiana Area Manager, focusing on the state’s daily operational management. Nick, a member of the firm since 1996, has nearly three decades of experience in traffic engineering and management and is based in the Baton Rouge office.

“Melinda has been a great leader who has initiated many strategic changes since joining our firm,” said Joey Hudnall, PE, Neel-Schaffer’s President and Chief Executive Officer. “And I am thrilled to see Chris step into his new position. His leadership skills have been evident throughout his time at Neel-Schaffer, and I have no doubt he will continue to excel.”

Chief Operating Officer Robert Walker, PE, called the changes “significant achievements for our firm,” adding, “the collaboration they have all shown, and the leadership demonstrated by Chris and Melinda, will combine to play a critical role in continuing to advance our One Neel-Schaffer goals and initiatives. In Louisiana, Nick has led our Baton Rouge office for many years and will be an excellent leader for our operations there.

“As Neel-Schaffer continues to grow and evolve, these leadership changes represent a significant step in our journey, and we are excited about the direction we are headed as a company.”