Orange County Branch Newsletter

April 2018

ASCE OC Annual Awards Night 2018

"Beneath the Stars at Bowers"

By Josue Vaglienty, P.E.

For 2018, Bowers Museum in Santa Ana hosted ASCE OC for our annual Awards Night, celebrating the accomplishments of individuals and projects from public and private sectors in Orange County. Prior to the dinner, 270 attendees enjoyed an open-air social hour in the Margaret & Cleo Key Courtyard.

The Individual Award Winners:

  • Outstanding Civil Engineer in the Public Sector – Dave Lowe (Retired)
  • Outstanding Civil Engineer in the Private Sector – Wei Koo (WKE)
  • Outstanding Civil Engineer in Community Service – Brad Dybel (Geosciences)
  • Outstanding Civil Engineer in Legislative Activities – Elizabeth Ruedas (CNC Engineering)
  • Outstanding YMF Officer – Jazzy Quinabo (Jacobs)
  • Outstanding ASCE Faculty Advisor – Professor Joel Lanning (UCI)
  • Outstanding ASCE Life member – Bill Lawson (Retired)
  • Outstanding Younger Civil Engineer – Nestor Godinez (SLR)
  • Outstanding Civil Engineering Student – Amber Ganapathy (UCI)
  • Lifetime Achievement Award – Bob Kallenbaugh (Retired)
  • Excellence in Promotion of Infrastructure – State Senator Josh Newman
  • Land Development Engineer of the Year – Gary Urban (GMU Geotechnical)
  • Mentor of the Year – Bryant Wong (Retired)

This year featured a new individual award category – Mentor of the Year. Mr. Bryant Wong was the inaugural recipient of the award. Norisa Abelgas, the ASCE OC Mentorship Committee Chair presented the award to Mr. Wong and acknowledged him for his dedication and commitment to the Mentorship Program (now in its 4th year of existence).

California State Senator Josh Newman (29th District) was also a special guest during Awards Night. He was recognized for his efforts in supporting Senate Bill 1 (SB-1) and promoting infrastructure. In return, the senator commended the efforts of local civil engineers for doing their part in advocating for infrastructure funding.

Bob Kallenbaugh, the recipient of the Lifetime Achievement Award, provided some enthusiastic comments in his address to the audience. He emphasized the value of being part of ASCE and encouraged members both young and old to continue their involvement. His immediate family and longtime mentor, Mr. Bob Bein (2001 ASCE Society President) were also in the audience cheering him on.

Also, the awardee for the President’s Award was announced to the surprise of this year’s recipient Juliet Su. Every year, the President’s Award is chosen by the Branch’s Past-President and is intended to recognize the efforts of an individual in the civil engineering industry who has been influential in the success of ASCE Orange County Branch. Traditionally, the award is not advertised and the recipient’s name is held a secret until the night of the event – a very difficult task to achieve!

In addition, several of the individual award winners announced were recognized by their alma-mater and (soon to be alma mater) – UC Irvine. Five (5) of the award recipients: Professor Joel Lanning, Elizabeth Ruedas (’14), Nestor Godinez (’07), Jazzy Quinabo (’14), and Amber Ganapathy (’18). Each winner was recently recognized on the UCI Samueli School of Engineering News website for their respective awards.

Additional photos of Awards Night Individual Winners can be found here.

The Project Award Winners:

  • Project of the Year – OCTA OC Bridges (OCTA)
  • Architectural Engineering Project – Argyros Girl Scout Leadership Center (Girl Scouts of OC / Fuscoe)
  • Bikeways & Trails Project – The Tracks at Brea (City of Brea / Dave Evans & Associates / Ninyo & Moore)
  • Bridge Project – Tustin/Rose Grade Separation (OCTA / Jacobs)
  • Community Improvement Project – Jeffrey Park n’ Ride (Caltrans - District 12)
  • Construction Project – Park Ave Bridge (City of Newport Beach / Michael Baker International)
  • Environmental Engineering Project – Dairy Fork Wetland (City of Aliso Viejo / Charles Abbott Associates)
  • Flood Management Project – Wagon Wheel Creek Restoration (OCPW / WRC)
  • Geotechnical Project – SR74 Ortega Highway Emergency Repairs (Caltrans – District 12)
  • Historical Renovation Project – Laguna Beach Festival of the Arts Grounds Renovation (Laguna Beach Festival of the Arts / Fuscoe)
  • Parks & Recreation Project – Crown Valley Park Channel Entry (City of Laguna Niguel / Hunsaker & Associates)
  • Roadway & Highway Project – La Novia Roundabout (Caltrans – District 12 / Michael Baker International)
  • Small Project – Mackay Park (City of Cypress / Griffin Structures)
  • Structural Engineering Project – Anaheim Convention Center Betterment (City of Anaheim / STV)
  • Sustainable Engineering Project – ABC Greenhome 3.0 (Habitat for Humanity / Fuscoe)
  • Transportation Project – OCTA OC Bridges (OCTA)
  • Urban / Land Development Project – Baker Ranch (Shea Homes / Toll Brothers)
  • Water Project – Tesoro Zone II/B (Santa Margarita Water District / Michael Baker International)

The Branch Officers (Jeff Braun, Elizabeth Ruedas, Sherry Weinmeier, Clint Isa, and Josue Vaglienty) graciously took turns in announcing the project award winners to well-deserving project teams.

The Project of Year and Transportation Project of the Year were both award to the OCTA OC Bridges Program. Jim Beil, Executive Director of Capital Programs, Rose Casey, Director of Highway Programs and Ross Lew, Project Manager from OCTA were on hand to receive the awards on behalf of OCTA. Over the course of the project’s 7-year history many civil engineering design consultants, construction managers, and support staff were involved with each of the 7 grade separations that were completed. Many of them were in the audience for Awards Night and took part in a special group photo.

A very special thanks to the following ASCE OC Committees that were instrumental in the success of this event:

  • Awards & Nominations Committee
  • Social Committee
  • Programs Committee

Additional photos of Awards Night Project Winners can be found here.

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