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MEP & Energy Engineering Services
NC Engineering License Number P-2244

MEP & Energy Engineering Firm with specialization in following areas: COVID-19 Building Readiness Analysis, Pre-Design, Energy Evaluation Services, Forensic Building Investigations, and Third Party Support

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J. Kirby Lee, PE, CEM, GBE, LEED GA - President & Founder

Panthera Leo Consulting, PLLC was born and founded in 2020 after realizing clients needed solutions with a wholistic approach with MEP / Energy engineering in buildings.  Panthera Leo is the scientific name for Lion and represents Courage, Strength, Bravery, Leadership, & Heart. 

Many times during the design process as a professional engineer, our Founder and President Kirby Lee discovered weak points gaps in the design and construction industry between Owners, Architects, Engineers, Contractors, and Vendors.  The relationships between each party of the 5 entities showed under-serviced areas that needed a stronger focus to make all of these parties of the process better.  The company has a specialized focus within the MEP / Energy world on COVID-19 Analysis, Pre-Design Assistance, Energy Services, Forensic Investigations, and Third Party Support.  These focus points are gaps between all 5 parties in a design / construction project where Panthera Leo Consulting, PLLC can enhance and create a more fluid design & construction project process for all parties.

Kirby has been involved in MEP / Energy engineering for over 20 years and in the HVAC industry as an Owner's Representative, Contractor, & Design Professional.  He started in the HVAC world at 13 years old learning all the aspects of the trade from his father (HVAC Contractor and 2nd generation business owner, Walter Lee).  At a young age, he realized that he would follow his family's footsteps in HVAC, but little did he know at the time the path moving forward would take him on a special but challenging journey. 

Working with his father taught him real life experiences on the contractor side of the business.   Design engineers in the MEP / Energy world typically do not get to work in the field prior to starting their career. It was imparted on Kirby from the beginning to always design a system with an emphasis on contractor friendly installations.  This experience has served him well and it continues to offer an advantage in perspective with a complete understanding of the design and contruction process for all angles.

After years working with private MEP consulting engineering firms, Kirby obtained his Professional Engineering license in 2013 and is registered in the State of North Carolina.  He is certified by NCEES Records to obtain an engineering license in all 50 states as needed.  Since 2013, Kirby continued on a growth path in his career working with client & project management working of development of the soft skills that are not taught in school.  Construction administration is also an emphasis that goes back to his roots as a child supporting project for both the private world & the public sector. 

His goal is to always continue to strengthen his technical knowledge in the craft of MEP / Energy engineering along with strong soft skills to show a polished approach to contribute toward a winning team environment.  Design & drafting buildings is the highest priority in typical MEP firms, but Kirby’s love for non design aspects of MEP & Energy engineering was his biggest passion & strength.  

As part of Kirby’s recent self development to improve soft skills in daily practice, he heard a speech called the Lion Attitude that inspired him to start a new journey.  This speech about the Lion was the cornerstone behind the firm’s name.  The Lion represents Courage, Strength, Bravery, Leadership, & Heart.  These 5 core values are the foundation in which Panthera Leo Consulting.  Our company will demonstrates these Lion values and will deliver each and every day for our clients.  Panthera Leo Consulting's goal is always to make our clients become the greatest versions of themselves, adding value to all we encounter, and collaborating to create successful long term partnerships for all sides.  

In his spare time, Kirby actively and passionately supports his local Triangle ASHRAE Chapter and recently served as President of the Chapter for an 18 month 2 term period.  He won the prestigious Rudy Ferguson award in 2019 given to the leader of the best performing Chapter in the Region IV area (NC/SC/GA).  During his full year as a President of the Chapter in 2019-2020, he lead the Triangle Chapter to a #1 ranking in performance metrics in the entire United States and #2 in the World overall.  

Kirby graduated from NC State with a bachelor’s degree in Mechanical Engineering and an associate degree in Pre-Engineering from Lenoir Community College.  In addition to having his PE registration he is also a Certified Energy Manager, Green Building Engineer, and has the LEED Green Associate from USGBC.  He also started up another company called Lion Attitude Coaching, LLC which was inspired by all the self development learned from the speech.  Through working with clients in the Life / Professional / Executive realm, he is trying to help people become the best they can for others by showing all the qualities of a Lion in their daily life.  

Kirby has been married for over 14 years to his wife Tara and lived in the Cary / Apex area since 2000.  He and Tara have a 4 year old daughter named Madelyn that keep them always entertained and full of joy.

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The goal of Panthera Leo Consulting, PLLC is to simply add value to our clients.  We strive to creating lasting partnerships with our holistic detailed approach to help teams reach their goals.

Our specialty focus areas within MEP/Energy are COVID-19 Analysis Services, Pre-Design, Energy Evaluations, Forensic Investigations, Third Party Support



Reducing Airborne Contaminants in Buildings to protect the welfare of the public.

Panthera Leo Consulting specializes in providing analysis of existing facilities for an airborne contaminants like COVID-19.

Our engineering expertise follows all the latest ASHRAE guidance to provide unbiased science based recommendations to fortify buildings in the COVID-19 world.  We provide recommendations with focus points around Filtration, Ventilation, & UVGI Integration.

Our engineering & science based approach is not under the influence of any manufacturer to push a specific product or sell equipment.



Making sound strategic collaborative decisions early before design starts to which result if a cleaner design & construction process in the long run for our clients and partners.

Our focused services in Pre-Design for MEP & Energy involve investing time before the design process starts.  Clients that engaged our company with Pre-Design services see benefits of reduced fee costs due to scope certainty, reducing risk by identification of early project pitfalls, and increasing profitability on the projects for all parties in the design / construction process.

Detailed Services Include:

  • Building / Facility Assessments

  • Conceptual Design Support for MEP / Energy 

Blueprint Design


Energy Modeling & Auditing to Reduce Utility Costs and find solutions that have returns on investment.

Clients are becoming more savvy with long view focus on energy decisions and costs for their buildings.  Panthera Leo Consulting has over 20 years of expertise with a specialization focus on Energy Modeling and Audits for existing and new buildings.  

Panthera Leo Consulting believes in a side by side approach on energy modeling.  Having the energy modeling running concurrently with the design allows for opportunities maximize the impact of MEP / Energy decisions during the design and construction process.  

Energy modeling being a decoupled effort by a separate source away from design teams also allows for easier delivery of project to meet tight schedule windows requested by clients. Design teams also see benefits to allow their focus from design teams to be on delivery of the drawings and specifications with higher precision & accuracy.

We also believe in simple box energy modeling before the project begins.  Having the simply box completed before design results in a comprehensive process review of all MEP / Energy decisions with minimal risk or impact on design fees.

Our Energy Audit Services follow ASHRAE Standard 210 guidelines with capabilities for Level 1,2,3 efforts for any project.  Our approach takes advantage of the expertise of our energy modeling skills, which allow for a impactful evaluation of facilities looking at all angles of building reviews.  The Energy Audits usually result in opportunities and energy efficiency measures showing a return on investment in both a short term and capital cost realm.

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"Broken Buildings"

Panthera Leo Consulting has been built to provide attention to detail with any client no matter what size issue comes up when it comes to fixing buildings with issues in the MEP / Energy world. 

Many times facilities need someone to perform an investigation where there might not be a design or construction issue present at the time.  Our forensic investigation services provide detailed information to help solve client problems that come up on buildings. 

Panthera Leo Consulting obtained years of experience with "broken buildings" working with an engineering firms in the past.  This experience made it clear this was important to clients and there is a need to for engineering services with a focus away from traditional design and construction environments.

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Independent Perspective To Add Value For All Parties in Design / Construction Projects by Reducing Risk / Change Orders.

Our firm offers third party services to assist all key parties on the project including owners, contractors, engineers, architects, and vendors. 

Having a third party support to the project allows a true unbiased point of view to help all players of project teams solve problems.  We believe that having an independent perspective on design and construction projects project reduces risk, change orders, and put each party to allow them to maximize the impact of their work for the entire team.  Design and Construction project contributors get so involved in all the details of a project that a big picture item could be missed.  Being able to have a third party review components of design and construction minimizes additional design fees, change orders, and reduces budget risk.  All of these items are to the benefit of all parties on a project but most importantly building Owners.

Our third party support services focus on the following areas for the MEP / Energy realm:

  • Value Engineering Support Services

  • Contract Administration Services (Shop Drawings, Site Investigations, Schedule, Subcontractor Reviews)

  • Owner's Representative Services

  • Design & Peer Review Services

#LionAttitude - Courage, Strength, Bravery, Leadership, Heart

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Let us know what we can do to add value with our assistance on your next project in the MEP / Energy Engineering realm!


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