The North American Tunneling Conference in Philadelphia this week was the witness of announcing winners of this year’s UCA Awards.
Due to recognizing outstanding achievements in the underground design and construction industry, William W Bill Edgerton received the UCA Lifetime Achievement Award.
Edgerton who has served on the SME Board and was the SME president in 2021, served as the UCA’s chair. Additionally, he edited Recommended Contract Practices for Underground Construction in 2008 and has authored numerous technical articles on procurement practices. While the Golden Beaver Award for Engineering belonged to him in 2012, in 2015 he was inducted into the National Academy of Construction.
The UCA Outstanding Educator Award, which is presented to educators who have had an exceptional career in the area of underground design and construction, was presented to Dr. Jamal Rostami from the Colorado School of Mines (CSM).
Dr. Rostami is the Hadden/Alacer Gold endowed chair and director of the Excavation Engineering and Earth Mechanics Institute of the Department of Mining Engineering at CSM. He has over 30 years of experience in design, management, research, and teaching in the field of mining, tunneling, and underground construction. He has chaired and co-ordinated the UCA of SME sessions at SME annual conferences since 2015.
The Person of the Year award belonged to Leonard A Worden. The intended award recognizes individuals who have made remarkable contributions to the field of tunneling and underground construction and to UCA during the past two to five years, as well as sustained involvement in UCA activities.
The CV of Worden are: being the CEO/principal of the CSI Group of Companies, headquartered in Hudson, New Hampshire, for the past 30 years he has led CSI Tunnel Systems, a specialist in the manufacture of precision precast concrete tunnel liners. Moreover, during his time in the precast concrete industry he has held various leadership positions with the National Precast Concrete Association, American Concrete Pipe Association, ASTM C-13 Committee, and the Underground Construction Association.
The UCA Young Member Award went to Aswathy Sivaram. The UCA Young Member Award is presented to a member aged 35 or under who has excelled through contributions to the tunneling and underground construction profession and/or UCA.
Sivaram joined Black & Veatch after graduating in geotechnical engineering from the Georgia Institute of Technology. Prior to her career in the consulting industry, she spent time in academia in various research roles. Her expertise lies in engineering design and construction management, proposal development, preparation of contract documents, and conformance reviews of heavy civil infrastructure projects.