When Marshal Myhan-Keogh graduated from Trousdale County High School in 2004, he never imagined the path that his life would take.
But much to his surprise, six years after finishing college, Myhan-Keogh’s job sent him overseas to the United Kingdom (UK), where he has since moved up the corporate ladder of the Dublin, Ireland-based international infrastructure and design company Actavo.
“Growing up in a small town, I didn’t know if I was ever going to be able to visit here, let alone live here,” said the 35-year-old Myhan-Keogh. “This all seemed very out of reach to me when I was in high school.”
During high school, Myhan-Keogh’s principal and teachers knew him as a happy, well-rounded young man with strong character.
“Marshal just took care of business and made good grades,” said retired Trousdale County Principal Toby Woodmore “He was always happy. His thing was band, and he was really, really good at it. It was his outlet.”
Trousdale County Band Director Rob Joines added, “His character was the first thing I noticed. Plus, he had talent, and everything he did, he did it to the best of his ability. Having been involved in music education helped to ensure that he had the background necessary to accomplish his goals and dreams, and every little goal, he more than accomplished.”
According to Myhan-Keogh, as a newly-graduated high school senior back in 2004, he thought he had settled on a career path, but that changed after he began college.
“When I graduated from high school, I was going to be an architect,” said Myhan-Keogh. “I started out going to the University of Tennessee-Knoxville for architecture and just decided that architecture wasn’t for me. When I got there, I realized it (architecture) had a lot less math than I expected. It was okay, but it wasn’t quite my thing.”
It was then that Myhan-Keogh transferred schools and changed his major to engineering.
“I left there and ended up getting my engineering degree at Tennessee Tech, a bachelor of science in civil engineering with minors in math and physics,” said Myhan-Keogh.
However, when he graduated from college in 2010, a struggling economy had taken a toll on the engineering market, and Myhan-Keogh had to find employment outside of his field of study.
“The last year before I graduated (from college), I was renovating houses to help pay the bills,” said Myhan-Keogh. “I kept doing that for a few years, because there was no engineering work to be had. I ended up doing that from 2010 until 2014.
“I, then, moved to Atlanta (Georgia) to try and find work. I started doing field surveys for a telecommunications company. Two years later, we were bought by an Irish company, and they shipped me over to the UK.”
Then, Myhan-Keogh was announced as Actavo’s new head of engineering.
“In line with our strategy for 2026 to grow a standalone engineering business, which will deliver services for our valued clients and support our existing divisions, I am delighted to announce the appointment of Marshal Myhan as our head of engineering,” said Actavo Group CEO Brian Kelly. “He joined Actavo in 2016 as a field engineer in the United States and has worked his way through the ranks, demonstrating leadership skills and a deep understanding of our business.”
Myhan-Keogh’s message to Trousdale County’s soon-to-be-graduated class of 2023 is to always be ready for when a pathway opens up.
“Success is never guaranteed,” said Myhan-Keogh. “There is never one path to success. Always be grateful for where you are and what you have. Success is something that you can work towards, but there is always going to be a little bit of luck involved, because you never know when the big tipping point is going come. You just have to make sure that you are ready for it when the time comes.”
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