Gary A. Sippel —  President & FounderGaryIndividual2e

Gary founded AEI in 1977.   Equipped with a fleet comprised of a single backhoe, he was the sole employee of the company.  However, viewing the industry through a lens of possibility and with an eye toward the cutting-edge of excavating technology, his fleet and workforce did not stay that way for long.  By gradually adding members to his workforce and new machinery to his backhoe fleet, AEI evolved from doing small-scale sewer projects to becoming a residential site developer by the early 1980s.  This orientation toward possibility did not relent, and Gary continued expanding AEI into what it is today – a large scale commercial, industrial, and residential developer.

Elaine Rufer  Accounting & Office Manager

Elaine brings 20+ years of office managing and banking experience to the AEI team.  She has been an essential part of our success for seven years now.  Known for not taking her lunch break until four o’clock in the afternoon, if she does so at all, Elaine works diligently to make sure that nothing falls through the cracks; and she does so with a refreshed attitude, ready to embrace and triumph over any challenges that the day offers her.  Elaine attributes AEI’s many successes to the drive and underlying sense of purpose that the AEI team has from the top down.


Lori Fagan — Administrative Assistant and Facility Managercat

As AEI continues to grow, Lori was added to the team in Summer of 2015 as additional administrative support, bringing with her 25 years of experience. When you work for AEI you wear many hats; along with being the first point of contact at AEI, Lori wears the fashionable Facility Management cap for Spectra Development (AEI’s sister company).  Holding a BS in accounting from Robert Morris University, Lori also rocks an accounting tiara for the multi-business office. Since every office needs a culinary expert, you may say she wears a ‘toque blanche’, scheduling food trucks, warming the office with chili, and getting up at 4:00 AM to make her famous Maple Bacon Cupcakes! Not only is Lori deemed our office Mom, she enjoys being a loving Mom friend to her two daughters at home.


Lori Merriman — Safety & Fleet ManagerLoriIndividual2

Lori joined Allegheny Excavating’s team by laboring in the field, driving rock truck and executing landscaping priorities. By January of 2012, she was reassigned  as an Office Assistant, later acquiring and developing the Safety and Fleet Manager role. Lori’s day-to-day duties are both variable and multifaceted, as she’s capable of filling cracks on site, or in the office. A personable, AEI corporate link, she further functions as support team for Spectra Development and is a graduate of Slippery Rock University.  Always an adventurous professional, Lori enjoys mountain biking, skiing, fishing, and disc golf.


Archie McConnell — Project Manager and Estimator

In 2012, Archie started his career with AEI at the age of 25, clenching a dense background in construction.  His dedication to the AEI team accompanied by his unparalleled work ethic and wit has propelled him to Lead Project Manager.  His comprehensive construction experience, technical skills, and computer expertise gives him a knowledge base that makes him one of the company’s youngest valued employees. Using this knowledge, he can quickly adapt to the unpredictable nature of the excavating industry and, therein, keep a project moving towards its timely completion.  Archie identifies AEI’s strong, company-wide work ethic and commitment to teamwork essential components of its success. 

Virginia Hoeg — Architectural Designer/Facility Manager, Spectra Development Company

A proverbial jack-of-all-trades, Virginia has been with Spectra Development – a sister company of Allegheny Excavating – for the last five years.   Her primary roles include architecture design and facility management at Spectra.  However, Virginia provides immediate auxiliary support to the Allegheny Excavating team, particularly with respect to architectural planning considerations, interior/exterior aesthetics, as well as office administration.  Earning Summa Cum Laude honors from La Roche College, Virginia holds a B.Sc. in Interior Architecture, in addition to a language M.S. (French, German, Russian) from the University of Strathclyde, Scotland.