Curtis DeLaquil
JE Dunn
D: 813-940-3248
Email Curtis

Vice President:

Brandon Facini
Plaza Construction
Email Brandon

(send payable checks to):

ACE Mentor Program of Greater Tampa Bay, Inc.
Attn: Nelson Etienne
Allstate Construction
4509 N. Nebraska Ave.
Tampa, FL 33603
D: 813-231-2525
Email Nelson

Corporate Sponsorships:

Brandon Facini
Plaza Construction
Email Brandon

Student Scholarships:

Mead & Hunt
D: 314-568-3363

Email Don

ACETinyTriangle.gifCurrent News



ACE Makes a Difference


ACE Mentor Recruitment TBD

ACE Student/Parent Orientation TBD

tampa ace.jpeg



Mentoring the Engineers, Architects, and Construction Professionals of the Future

The ACE program goes far beyond technical capabilities, it requires individuals who can help the students develop leadership, organization and people skills, while also showing them a "real day in the life of" through just being yourself. Mentoring also gives the mentor an amazing networking group of others in their profession.

The ACE Mentor Program of Greater Tampa Bay provides opportunities to High School Students to learn about careers in Architecture, Construction, and Engineering from local industry leaders. This year we will be doing a virtual program. For more information on mentoring, sponsorship, or enrolling your High School student, please contact our Board of Directors.

About Us

High school students in the Tampa area can now benefit from a nationwide program designed to introduce them to the wide range of career opportunities open to young people in architecture, construction, engineering, and related areas of the building design and construction industry.

Photo_1.JPGAt weekly meetings, student teams work directly with professionals from leading area firms, who volunteer their time to mentor the teams as they design hypothetical projects, tour local construction sites, and visit architectural, engineering and construction offices.

For students, it’s a unique chance to discover and develop new skills, solidify future goals and get on track to exciting, rewarding careers. In addition, many students form positive relationships with industry professionals who can provide important references for obtaining college admissions, scholarships, internships and full-time employment.

NOTE: Due to the current COVID19 Pandemic, the ACE Mentoring Program of Greater Tampa Bay will be doing a virtual program for the 2020/2021 program. See the flyer for more info.

Download Flyer

Meet our Board of Directors

Curtis Delaquil.jpg

Curtis DeLaquil
ACE President
JE Dunn Construction
Read Bio

Brandon Facini.jpg

Brandon Facini
ACE Vice President 
Plaza Construction
Read Bio

Julie Florez.jpg

Julie Florez, EI
ACE Secretary
Read Bio

Nelson Etienne.jpg

Nelson Etienne
ACE Treasurer
Allstate Construction Inc
Read Bio

Don Koppy

ACE Board
(Scholarship Chair)
Mead & Hunt
Read Bio

Katrina Pasteur.jpg

Katrina Pasteur,

ACE Board
The Beck Group
Read Bio

Benjamin R Fritzsche.jpg

Ben Fritzsche
ACE Board
Moss Construction
Read Bio

Stephen Boyd.jpg

Stephen Boyd
ACE Board
Gilbane Construction
Read Bio


Our Team Projects

Photo_2.JPGStudents in the ACE program typically work closely with their mentors on projects that provide hands-on experience in solving the types of design, engineering and construction challenges industry professionals confront every day.

The teams often learn how to use advanced computerized tools, such as AutoCAD, while special exercises and activities illustrate the industry’s demand for young people skilled in math, physics, economics, art and other disciplines.

Many ACE affiliates culminate their program year with special events at which teams present their concepts to mentors, families, teachers and community leaders.

Our Past Projects Include:

  • 2011/2012 – Ideal School Design
  • 2012/2013 – Dubai Bridge Proposal
  • 2013/2014 – Tampa Airport Renovations
  • 2014/2015 – Ybor City Hotel
  • 2015/2016 – Airport Concessions Warehouse
  • 2016/2017 – Julian B. Lane Park Renovations
  • 2017/2018 – Gateway to Tampa for FDOT
  • 2018/2019 - Morsani College of Medicine

Participate in ACE!

If you’d like to experience ACE’s challenges, opportunities and rewards for yourself, just contact the ACE leader listed in the upper right-hand corner of this page.

Curtis DelaquilCurtis DeLaquil
ACE President
JE Dunn

Curtis DeLaquil graduated from the University of Florida in 2004 with a BS in Building Construction. He is currently JE Dunn’s market leader focused on serving educational clients in the Tampa Bay area. He has spent his entire professional career at JE Dunn, which started in Atlanta with high-rise construction in urban areas. In 2009 he began to focus primarily on educational construction projects and has worked on complex, multi-phased school renovation projects as well as ground-up new facilities. Curtis has served the local community since relocating to Tampa, through active involvement with youth sports at the YMCA, Tampa Bay Little League, and volunteer efforts with ACE Mentors.

Brandon FaciniBrandon Facini
ACE Vice President
DPR Construction

Brandon is a project manager at Plaza Construction. With experience in projects that vary in scope and size, Brandon brings a well-rounded and innovative approach to project management. Brandon also previously lead a community initiative team where he supported volunteer projects for Boys & Girls Club, Shriners, and A Brighter Community Day Care. Brandon’s community initiative focus is to inspire and develop construction careers in youth. Part of those efforts include involvement with Boys and Girls Club YES Academy, Build Tampa Bay Foundation (Construction Career Day for High School Students interested in the industry), ACE Mentorship, and facilitating high school construction internships.

Julie FlorezJulie Florez, EI

Julie graduated from the University of Kentucky where she received her bachelors of science in Civil Engineering. Julie works as a Water/Wastewater E.I. at HDR, where she has worked for the past 2 years. Julie also is also French pastry chef and studied at École Grégoire-Ferrandi in Paris, France, and enjoys baking in her spare time.

Nelson EtienneNelson Etienne
ACE Treasurer
Allstate Construction Inc

Nelson graduated from Florida A&M University with a degree in Construction Engineering and Management in 2001, and is currently a Senior Project Manager with Allstate Construction here in Tampa. He has worked on projects all over Hillsborough, Pinellas County locally. He has worked on some out of state and city projects. He is responsible for overall management in the preconstruction and construction phases of assigned projects from inception through final commissioning and completion. Outside of work he spends times mentoring and volunteering with different organizations, such as ACE, Pinellas Education Foundation, Take Stock in Children, and Great American Teach in. Additionally, spends time traveling and spending time with his family and friends.

Donald KoppyDon Koppy, AIA, CSI, CCS, NCARB
Board Member
Mead & Hunt

Donald A. Koppy, AIA, CSI, CCS, NCARB, is the Architecture Department Manager for Mead & Hunt’s Southern Region, and is Greater Tampa Bay’s ACE Mentor Program’s Scholarship Chair. Mr. Koppy graduated with a B.Arch. degree from the University of Arizona, and has 40 years of design and construction experience. He is licensed as an architect in fourteen states and is also a Certified Construction Specifier. Mr. Koppy is an active member of the Construction Specifications Institute’s (CSI) Certification programs; was chapter president, vice president, secretary, and products show chairperson of CSI’s Chapter; taught the “Professional Office Practice” course at Washington University, was an instructor of Construction Document Technology (CDT) classes for 13 years, and was chair of the advisory board, Architectural Technology Program, at Ranken Technical College. In 2006 Mr. Koppy led the implementation of BIM and development of Build-Before-You-Build services at a large design-build firm, and speaks extensively about BIM technologies in current and future project delivery systems..

Katrina PasteurKatrina Pasteur, AIA, NCARB
Board Member
The Beck Group

As Healthcare Market Sector Leader in Tampa, Katrina engages both design and construction to implement a healthcare delivery process that caters to the goals of each client’s needs. She has over 10 years’ experience in the healthcare design market and joined Beck in 2017 to help build their regional healthcare portfolio. She is always seeking to learn and believes in the importance of education at every level. Katrina is a second generation Florida Gator and hopes her two boys will follow suit.


  • University of Florida, Master of Architecture, May 2008
  • University of Florida, Bachelor of Design in Architecture, May 2006
  • University of Florida Design-Build Team, Southeast Conference Competition, Captain 2005-2006 team
  • University of Florida Minority Ambassadors: tour guide and member
  • Golden Key National Honor Society
  • Pi Beta Phi sorority


  • Registered Architect
  • National Council of Architectural Registration Boards Certified
  • American Institute of Architects, Academy of Architecture for Health Committee (2015 - present)
  • Kelley Emerging Professional Award Recipient, AIA Tampa Bay (2014)
  • American Institute of Architects, Tampa Bay Chapter: Member (2008 - present), Tour Tampa Bay
  • Architecture Development Committee/Lead (2012), Associate Director (2010), Subcommittee member for Discover Design (2011), ArchiFest (2009, 2010)

Ben FritzscheBen Fritzsche
Board Member
Strategic Property Partners

Benjamin graduated from the University of Florida in 2014 with a B.A. in History before proceeding to get his M.S. at the Rinker School of Construction Management at the University of Florida. Benjamin began working with Moss in 2016, and although he is a native of Tampa, commenced his career in South Florida where he lived for a year prior to returning. In his time with Moss, Benjamin has worked in the Special Projects division and completed multi-family projects for the Related group and is currently working on Water Street for Strategic Property Partners. He has volunteered with ACE for three years and says his favorite part about the program is seeing the students mature and grow over such a short time, while being able to provide them financial and scholastic opportunities for their long term growth.

Stephen BoydStephen Boyd
Board Member
Gilbane Building Company

Stephen graduated with a B.S. in Construction Management from the University of Florida M.E. Rinker School of Construction Management in 2016. In his four years with Gilbane Building Company, Stephen has cultivated experience in many facets of commercial construction, including K-12, higher education, government facilities, healthcare, and sports and entertainment. Stephen is passionate about giving back to the community he grew up in by volunteering with Habitat for Humanity, Tampa Bay Watch, and the ACE Mentorship program. Stephen has been a mentor with the ACE Mentor Program of Greater Tampa Bay for 3 years and has been instrumental in expanding the program within Pinellas county.