In 1967, three professors from Stanford University and two engineers from Stanford Research Institute came together to pioneer a new field: investigating how and why failures and accidents occur. Born of collaboration and innovation, Failure Analysis Associates initially provided engineering expertise to the legal and insurance industries.
Alan Tetelman (left) and Bernard Ross
In the 1970s, we expanded our accident investigation services while also responding to the increased engineering requirements of the utility and nuclear power industries. As our reputation for working on well-known investigations grew, so did our footprint, with office openings in Los Angeles and Texas.
1975 - Los Angeles
1977 - Houston
Exponent added civil engineering, structural engineering, electrical engineering, biomechanics, data analysis/statistics, human factors, and visual communication services — extending our multidisciplinary approach to solving our clients' toughest challenges. In 1985, we also made a landmark investment in a 147-acre site for our Test & Engineering Center (TEC) in Phoenix, Arizona. This laboratory facility provides product development and testing support for a variety of industries.
Vehicle Crash Testing
The 1990s were transformative for Exponent. As our firm grew to offer services much broader than failure analysis, we developed a deep bench of multidisciplinary scientists and engineers, who solved our clients' challenges in innovative ways. We started the decade by becoming a publicly listed company on the NASDAQ stock exchange and broke ground in Europe soon after. In 1996, we acquired Environmental Health Strategies, enabling our expansion beyond accidents and natural disasters, followed by PTI Environmental Services in 1997. We rounded out the '90s by embracing a new name and brand identity, better reflecting the company we had become.
1990 - Failure Analysis Associates Goes Public with The Stock Symbol FAIL
1991 - Exponent Breaks Ground in Europe
1996-97 - Acquired Environmental Health Strategies and PTI Environmental Services
1998 - Failure Analysis Associates Becomes Exponent
Exponent continued to expand our global footprint during this decade. In 2002, we opened our first office in China and acquired Novigen Sciences, a technical consultancy focused on on the impact of chemical substances on health and the environment. This became the foundation of our Chemical Regulation & Food Safety practice. We also grew our health practices by hiring prominent toxicologists, industrial hygienists, risk assessors, biostatisticians, and epidemiologists. We broadened our proactive design consulting services into the area of technology development, too.
2002 - China
2002 - Novigen Acquisition
This decade was marked by several investigations into major natural and man-made disasters. We engaged in failure analysis on a new scale, applying multidisciplinary expertise to solve challenges and mitigate risks. We also appointed our current CEO, Dr. Catherine Corrigan, in 2018, following her tenure as president beginning in 2016.
As the world reeled from the coronavirus pandemic, Exponent worked quickly to ensure the safety of our colleagues. For clients, we provided timely resources and remote inspections, while consulting on how to manage and mitigate risks. We also marked 55 years of scientific excellence in 2022.