Azar succeeding Edwards as CEO at Energy EPC firm Black & Veatch

April 18, 2022
Black & Veatch serves as an engineering, procurement, construction and consulting firm on energy projects of all types, with a recent focus aimed toward renewable energy, hydrogen and microgrids

Longtime Black & Veatch leader Steve Edwards is retiring as the global energy and critical infrastructure firm’s CEO.

Edwards will be succeeded by Mario Azar in both the chairman and CEO roles at Black & Veatch. Azar, who has been serving in the president post for B&V’s Energy and Process Industries group, will be only the eighth top leader in the company’s 107-year history.

“As global megatrends reshape the critical infrastructure markets we serve, the Black & Veatch board of directors is thrilled to select Mario based on his vast global experience, proven leadership capabilities, innovative and collaborative approach and strong focus on client relationships,” said Edwards. “Since joining the company in 2018, Mario has been the architect of an effort that is repowering the power industry; as well as in the strategic repositioning of our company to address the megatrends our clients and the world faces.

Edwards retires after a 44-year career in energy infrastructure. He was appointed to the B&V board of directors in 2012, named chief operating officer a year later and then chair, president and CEO in 2014.

He guided energy projects throughout the world, including North America, southeast Asia, Australia, and India. Black & Veatch serves as an engineering, procurement, construction and consulting firm on energy projects of all types, with a recent focus aimed toward renewable energy, hydrogen and microgrids.

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Azar joined B&V four years ago, but prior to that had a three-decade career mainly in engineering and construction roles for energy and industrial projects. He led global businesses with Siemens and Westinghouse, among other roles.

 “It is a true honor to be selected to lead Black & Veatch, a company with such deep history and a stellar reputation built by a world-class team of global professionals,” Azar said. “The portfolio of solutions Black & Veatch offers, coupled with our transformed business model aligning with the megatrends reshaping our world, positions us to continue fulfilling our mission of Building a World of Difference for generations to come. I am excited about the future of our company and growing partnerships with our clients as their business needs evolve.”

The company will name a successor to fill Azar’s current role in the near future.

Kansas City, Mo.-based Black & Veatch has led engineering and construction for global projects in critical sectors such as energy and water infrastructure. These include everything from utility-scale solar farms to liquified natural gas terminals and power plants.

About the Author

Rod Walton, EnergyTech Managing Editor | Senior Editor

For EnergyTech editorial inquiries, please contact Managing Editor Rod Walton at [email protected].

Rod Walton has spent 15 years covering the energy industry as a newspaper and trade journalist. He formerly was energy writer and business editor at the Tulsa World. Later, he spent six years covering the electricity power sector for Pennwell and Clarion Events. He joined Endeavor and EnergyTech in November 2021.

Walton earned his Bachelors degree in journalism from the University of Oklahoma. His career stops include the Moore American, Bartlesville Examiner-Enterprise, Wagoner Tribune and Tulsa World. 

EnergyTech is focused on the mission critical and large-scale energy users and their sustainability and resiliency goals. These include the commercial and industrial sectors, as well as the military, universities, data centers and microgrids. The C&I sectors together account for close to 30 percent of greenhouse gas emissions in the U.S.

He was named Managing Editor for Microgrid Knowledge and EnergyTech starting July 1, 2023

Many large-scale energy users such as Fortune 500 companies, and mission-critical users such as military bases, universities, healthcare facilities, public safety and data centers, shifting their energy priorities to reach net-zero carbon goals within the coming decades. These include plans for renewable energy power purchase agreements, but also on-site resiliency projects such as microgrids, combined heat and power, rooftop solar, energy storage, digitalization and building efficiency upgrades.