Phil Peterson, Co-Founder of Berntsen International, Passes at 90


Phil Peterson, the Berntsen International chairman and co-founder who pioneered new marking products for the survey industry, passed away June 18 at the age of 90.

During his more than four-decade career, Phil Peterson helped transform how surveyors mark land boundaries. “The surveying industry has lost a visionary and champion and we have lost an amazing man, said Rhonda Rushing, Phil’s daughter and President of Berntsen. We will honor his memory by dedicating ourselves to continuing the work he loved so much."

Phil and friend, Peter Berntsen co-founded Berntsen Cast Products, Inc. (now Berntsen International) in 1972 based on their ‘restaurant napkin design’ of the W-1 monument – a cast aluminum breakaway marker that was light-weight, resistant to corrosion, and detectable with a magnetic locator. The W-1 won the Governor’s New Product Award in 1975 and it became the core of a business that today sells survey monuments, caps, rods, and posts throughout the world.

Phil never stopped being an entrepreneur or a tireless promoter of surveying. He was responsible for many product innovations throughout his career and remained an active advocate to the end with his push to move Berntsen into a ‘smart’ marking world.

At the end of the day, Phil was committed to his family, his employees, and his customers – the surveyors in the field. “Salt of the earth people”, he called them, “we’re here to make sure that they can do the best job possible.”

In remembrance of Phil Peterson, our offices will be closed Tuesday, June 23rd, 2015