The EFI Team: Deep in Industry Experience

Our passion for solving industry’s toughest challenges stems naturally from our team members’ individual and collective industry expertise gained through decades of first-hand experience working within diverse manufacturing environments.

EFI Group’s administrative and CAD design resources are located in its Baltimore office. We are also aligned with a number of engineering and subject matter experts (SME) and partner with other engineering firms to support client projects as needed.

Ken Parezo, P.E., Senior Engineer, Managing Partner

image-member-1As founder and managing partner, Ken is the driving force behind EFI Group’s vision and mission to fill a critical gap within industry. Specifically, to provide manufacturing enterprises with outside consultants who have worked on industry’s side of the equation and bring the deeper insight required to:

  • See the client’s larger picture.
  • Understand what is at stake for the organization.
  • Accurately identify the issues.
  • Develop effective solutions without requiring the client to define the path.

Ken personally brings 30+ years of industrial engineering experience to the EFI team and has previously held positions at several well-respected professional engineering consultancies and firms, including a mid-Atlantic A&E consultancy; a manufacturer of high-pressure and solid decorative products with worldwide distribution, where he served 12 years as an engineering and maintenance manager; and a manufacturer of dredging and mining machinery.

Ken earned his B.S. in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Massachusetts and his M.S. from the University of Maryland.

He is also a registered Professional Engineer in MD.

Bill Ballard, P.E., Project Manager, Partner

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As partner and project manager, Bill is responsible for maintaining EFI Group’s Project Management and Lean Manufacturing standards, assigning the right resources to the challenge at hand, as well as ensuring EFI Group’s clients have an exceptional experience overall.

With 35+ years of experience and special expertise in manufacturing process design, Bill has applied his skill set to a wide range of industries and has managed a host of multi-disciplined projects.

Prior to joining EFI Group, Bill led capital project evaluation, capital expansion and manufacturing improvement-planning activities for a major chemical company, and also held line positions in both manufacturing and maintenance.

Bill is a Mechanical Engineering professional and earned his MBA in Finance from the University of Baltimore. He is a registered Professional Engineer in MD.

Jim Solich, P.E., Senior Project Manager, Partner

A Manufacturing & Technology professional, Jim has 30+ years of relevant experience in manufacturing systems; including automation, packaging and filling.

Throughout his career, Jim has demonstrated the ability to solve problems with a rational toolset in order to achieve data driven solutions.

Prior to joining EFI Group, Jim was Vice President of Engineering, Development & Sales at a manufacturer of performance packaging products where he helped develop and lead a customer-centric organization focused on solving customer problems related to product design, equipment design and selection, start up and troubleshooting. He also spent 10 years with a major material handling company, where he deepened his experience with overhead lifting, equipment and systems.

Jim earned his MBA from Mount Saint Mary’s University and his BS in Mechanical Engineering Technology from University of Pittsburgh.

He is also a registered Professional Engineer in PA, MD, IN and CA, and is also a court-recognized Expert Witness in Accident Reconstruction.

Karl VanTine, Senior Project Engineer, Partner

Karl knows how to effectively drive projects from concept to implementation.

With 20+ years of manufacturing experience as a Process and Project Engineer, Karl has earned a stellar reputation for his excellent communication skills, ability to effectively work on the plant floor, hands-on problem solving and troubleshooting experience, as well as a keen attention to detail.

Karl’s industry experience is broad and includes special expertise in sugar manufacturing, alumina smelting, food processing and brick manufacturing. Additionally, he is extremely fluent in bulk material handling systems.

Prior to joining EFI Group, Karl held positions in high pressure laminate manufacturing; textile manufacturing and in food packaging.

Karl earned his B.S. in Mechanical Engineering from Virginia Tech.

Scott Laich, Senior Project Engineer, Partner

Scott’s 20+ years of diverse industry experience has made him a much-valued asset to EFI Group and its clients.

At EFI Group, Scott has led multiple process and equipment improvement projects for firms in the aerospace, primary aluminum and paper industries. Prior to joining the firm, Scott managed the engineering and maintenance departments for a paper converting and printing company, and also held a variety of engineering positions at both large and small companies specializing in the building products, furniture and machine tool industries.

Scott earned his Masters of Manufacturing Systems Engineering from the University of Wisconsin, and his B.S. in Mechanical Engineering from the New Jersey Institute of Technology.

EFI Group is a manufacturing engineering firm practicing process engineering, process design, design engineering, manufacturing technology and engineering services.
EFI Group is based in Baltimore, Maryland (MD) and serves clients nationwide, including those in Delaware; Maryland; Pennsylvania; Virginia; West Virginia and Washington, D.C.