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ON THE MOVE TOP ENVIRONMENTAL FIRM WOODARD & CURRAN ANNOUNCES ALYSON WATSON AS NEW CEO Industry-leading water and environmental firm Woodard & Curran has announced that its board of directors selected Alyson Watson, PE to succeed Doug McKeown as CEO effective January 1, 2021, making her the firm’s third CEO in its 41-year history. This is the culmination of a three-year process to transition CEO leadership proactively and seamlessly. The board selectedWatson froman exceptional list of internal and external candidates, as the firm prepares to wrap up another successful fiscal year despite the social, economic, and public health challenges that 2020 presented. Watson is based in the firm’s San Francisco office. “I am truly honored to lead this incredible company as its next CEO,” Watson said. “Woodard & Curran is a different kind of firm. Focused on our people, our clients, and the community, we bring a complete range of capabilities to meet the most critical water- and environment-related challenges. But the thing that makes us special, and the thing that really sets us apart, is the level of professionalism and commitment our talented people bring to every client and project. I could not be more grateful for the opportunity to lead this excellent team as we transition into our next phase of growth.” Watson is a Stanford University graduate

and accomplished triathlete with 20 years of experience as an executive leader, environmental consultant, and project manager focused on water resources planning and water quality analysis. Watson joined Woodard & Curran in 2016, following the acquisition of RMC Water and Environment where she had served as president and CEO. Since then, Watson has successfully led the Municipal West strategic business unit for Woodard & Curran. She was elected to the firm’s board of directors in 2018 and is currently serving as the chair of the Governance & Nomination Committee. She is also a director and ESOP trustee for Mark Thomas & Co. , a California-based transportation engineering firm. “I couldn’t be more excited handing the reins to Alyson,” McKeown said. “She represents the next generation of leadership for our firm and will guide us forward with a commitment to the same values that our founders, Frank Woodard and Al Curran, built this firm on and that I have been a steward of since 2007. Her strategic mindset and resilient attitude will serve us well as we head into the next chapter in a rapidly changing landscape.” McKeown joined Woodard & Curran in 1992 to start-up and lead the firm’s operations and maintenance business unit, and he later served as director of marketing. In 2007 he became Woodard & Curran’s second CEO, taking the helm from co-founder Al Curran.

Under McKeown’s leadership, the firm’s revenue tripled, employee count grew from 450 to more than 1,100 people serving clients across the U.S., and private ownership expanded tomore thana thirdof theemployees. Other noteworthy accomplishments under McKeown’s tenure include climbing to No. 74 on Engineering News-Record’s Top 500 Design firms list, the formation of the Woodard & Curran Foundation, publication of the firm’s first Corporate Social Responsibility Report, a commitment to diversity and inclusion, and a culture of health and safety. Woodard & Curran is a privately held company known for handling a wide range of water and environmental issues, solving complex problems with creativity and tenacity. The firm celebrated its 40th anniversary in 2020, and remains committed to its mission to: develop and perpetuate a safe, enjoyable, gratifying, and fulfilling place to work with the important objectives of growth, freedom, challenge, recognition, and reward; deliver to clients and the community a continually expanding range of high-quality consulting engineering, science, and operations services; and in all endeavors of the company to act in a character of good faith and fairness, and at all times, hold protection of the environment in a regard superior to that of all other interests.

JOSEPH SPADEA, from page 3

as well as attract potential investors to enhance economic development in the city. ❚ ❚ To assist with conveying the design team’s concepts during the proposal and interview stages, we developed a complete digital twin of the communities that would be impacted by bridge replacement projects, including incredible attention to engineering detail and aesthetics. ❚ ❚ To attract investors and educate stakeholders, we developed videos showing the complexity of process equipment that takes waste and converts it to energy. ❚ ❚ Anything is possible once we vet the client needs and understand their potential audience. Getting creative with your video marketing efforts requires a continual adaptation of your strategy. However, finding ways to integrate those efforts into the work you’re doing for your clients is a great way to take advantage of the impact that videos can have on your audience. We live in a three-dimensional world and with the evolution of technology, we have found that our clients will expect these types of presentations. We have also begun integrating virtual reality into our videos. As the technology evolves, more and more will be expected. The AEC world should be a leader in adding these types of offerings to our list of services. JOSEPH SPADEA, PE is Pennoni’s design visualization practice leader and a senior bridge engineer. Contact him at

Some examples of where we’ve seen success in implementing our videos beyond YouTube and other social platforms includes: ❚ ❚ The development of a public outreach video series for a department of transportation. This series shows staging for a variety of typical DOT construction projects. These videos help the DOT answer questions from the public, such as, “Why does it take so long to replace a culvert?” “We live in a three-dimensional world and with the evolution of technology, we have found that our clients will expect these ❚ ❚ Smart City and innovation initiatives can be highly technical and complex. We developed a video to help a research institute illustrate the purpose and end result of implementing a living laboratory testing ground in the heart of a city. The video helped provide awareness for the public types of presentations. We have also begun integrating virtual reality into our videos. As the technology evolves, more and more will be expected.”

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