My name is Alex Rayfield and I’m a Professional Civil Engineer in the state of Virginia specializing in vertical and horizontal structures as well as a state of Virginia licensed home inspector. I graduated in 2013 from the University of Alabama with a bachelor’s degree in Civil Engineering with a minor in Structural Engineering. My path led me to structural engineering through many different facets but the majority of it can be traced back to April 27, 2011 while in college in Tuscaloosa, Alabama. On that day over 200 tornadoes touched down in the state killing over 300 people. The worst one, an EF4, occurred right in my back yard with winds topping 190 mph and end-to-end was over 1.5 miles wide when it came through the heart of Tuscaloosa. This tornado alone killed 64 people and left over 1,000 injured and without a home or power for well over two weeks. I, along with my brother and a few friends for the next 3 weeks, set out to perform search and rescue and then search and recovery working closely with local authorities and then the National Guard once the state was put into a state of emergency. We saved many people’s lives during that time but, unfortunately, were not able to save everyone.
It was this natural disaster that really sparked a turning point in my life. Since I was in engineering school but, at the time, was unsure of the path I wanted to go, this was the sign I needed to really get serious about my education. I took this as the starting block for trying to help bring peace of mind to those in “tornado alley” and raise awareness of the devastating effects that these natural disasters can have on a city, community and families alike.
After college, I got my start in the profession in Houston, Texas where I worked primarily as a waterway engineer with minor non-life supporting structures. I then moved to Roanoke, Virginia and worked as a structural designer completing projects for the DOD, DOE, USAID, City of Roanoke and a few different healthcare organizations. Lastly, I worked in Washington D.C. as a structural superintendent for a construction company to gain some knowledge on how a design is put into action and becomes a product of the built environment.
Today, I’m hoping to help home owners understand where they live, why the structure in which they call “home” is built the way it is, and why such stringent rules and codes are in place and enforced. I hope to bring peace-of-mind to each homeowner I work with so they can sleep more sound in a structure that they trust will keep them and their loved ones safe in the event one of these or many other natural disasters does take place.
Currently, I live in Madison, Virginia and am the owner of Choice Home Inspections, which services residential and commercial inspections, and Elevated Structural Solutions, a structural engineering consulting firm that serves the central Virginia area for custom home design, construction administration, permitting, home repairs, additions and/or renovations.
My mission is to bring peace-of-mind through thorough and quality inspections, unwavering dedication to the client and task at hand, and vital education to the homeowner leaving them feeling empowered moving forward. This is achieved through integrity and passion in what I do while maintaining transparency to deliver the highest quality product to the client.