Remembering Michael Burgess


It is with heavy hearts that we at Xpera Group bid farewell to our friend and colleague, Michael Burgess, following a long and courageous battle with cancer.

Michael was an integral member of the Xpera team, serving as vice president and principal consultant since 2011, although many of us worked with him in one capacity or another for 10 years, 20 years or more. He will be sincerely missed on both a professional and personal level.

Michael was our "go-to" man for all things mechanical engineering. It was a passion of his and his expertise was unsurpassed. He was a designated expert in 200 cases and experienced in many facets of our business, including construction management, building commissioning, forensic engineering and design. He was able to view projects from both the construction industry's perspective, as well as technical and theoretical positions. This unique vantage point made him an exceptional problem-solver.

With his passing, our founder and president, Ted Bumgardner, said, "We can rest assured that any issues God has with plumbing and HVAC in heaven will soon be resolved."

Michael's professionalism, integrity and dedication to his clients and to the betterment of the industry have been inspiring to so many of us. In the past several days, we have taken the opportunity to speak with a number of his clients and peers. We would like to share some of their words of remembrance, which we believe speak to what kind of a man he was.

Michael worked with attorney Ann Rankin on the team representing the plaintiff on the landmark case of Beacon Residential Community Association v. Catellus Third and King, et. al., which they took over in 2011. The biggest challenge in the case, which would end up changing California law and the standard of care for design professionals, was the existence of solar heat gain that caused some units to experience elevated temperatures as much as 30 degrees higher than the outside air. Previous legal teams had engaged a number of mechanical engineering firms, none of whom could suggest a solution.