J. Kent O’Brien, PE, has joined Jones|Carter as vice president serving the Central and South Texas regions. O’Brien has more than 35 years of experience in business leadership, project development, and civil engineering focused in the Austin and San Antonio regions.
O’Brien has managed and led a diverse range of transportation, land development, and water resource projects, including all phases of design and construction. He has worked alongside cities, counties, municipalities, metropolitan planning organizations, energy and utility providers, and developers to support thoughtful and sustainable growth.
Throughout his career, O’Brien has worked extensively with the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT). As team leader for the Interstate Highway 410/U.S. Highway 281 Interchange in San Antonio, O’Brien was responsible for the design of all drainage systems and structures as well as roadway design for improvements made to southbound 281. O’Brien served as project manager for multiple TxDOT general engineering services contracts (GEC) encompassing more than 45 separate project task orders. One of the GEC projects required environmental approvals, and O’Brien utilized the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality water pollution abatement plan to gain the necessary approvals for the Edwards Aquifer. He also served as the senior engineering manager responsible for drainage studies and hydraulic design in support of the roadway and bridge improvements of Loop 1604, from FM 471 to U.S. Highway 90.
O’Brien received his Bachelor of Science in civil engineering from Texas A&M University in 1983. He began his career as an engineer-in-training with TxDOT and has worked as an engineer in Texas for more than 25 years. Prior to joining Jones|Carter, he served as chief operating officer and director of engineering for O’Brien Engineering Services LLC.
O’Brien has been an active participant in professional and civic organizations in the Austin and San Antonio areas. He served as president for the Texas Society of Professional Engineers and is currently a liaison to the Texas Board of Professional Engineers. He also serves as a mentor with the TxDOT engineering program, which helps with career development, counseling, and licensing support for Texas engineers. O’Brien is an authorized OSHA trainer and has led training sessions across a broad range of professional and safety subjects. Through these and other organizations, he has dedicated himself to furthering the professional development of young engineers through teaching and mentorship.
With more than 40 years of experience, Jones|Carter proudly provides civil engineering and surveying services for both private development and public infrastructure improvements. Jones|Carter was established in 1976 in Houston and has been serving the San Antonio community since 2007. The firm has a total of eight locations throughout the state, including San Antonio, Austin, Houston, Dallas, Katy, College Station, Rosenberg, and The Woodlands. Jones|Carter is an Engineering News-Record Top 500 national firm.