Tony Allen, P. E.
Washington State Department of Transportation
Tony Allen, P. E., Washington State Department of Transportation, has been selected as the recipient of the 2023 Government Engineer of the Year Award in recognition of his exceptional career as a geotechnical engineer, his development of standards for geosynthetic materials and retaining wall engineered products, and his participation in the development of improved design procedures for addressing stormwater infiltration.
He is an internationally recognized geotechnical engineer with 39 year of experience in the public sector. This experience includes leading the geotechnical engineering program for the Washington State Department of Transportation (WSDOT) for the past 29 years as the State Geotechnical Engineer. He has been a technical policy maker who has significantly influenced both public and private sector geotechnical design and construction practice, both locally and nationally. He led the development of the WSDOT Geotechnical Design Manual that contains engineering design standards and construction specifications. This manual is widely used by local agencies, WSDOT, other state departments of transportation, and the Federal Highway Administration. He has been very active with the American Association of Highway and Transportation Officials leading a committee responsible for development of design specifications for bridge wall and foundation design and leading a second committee responsible for development of a testing and evaluation program for geosynthetic reinforcement products. He developed a research program to analyze the design of reinforced soil structures that use geosynthetic and steel reinforcement. The results were published in a technical paper describing a new, more cost-effective method of designing mechanically stabilized earth retaining walls. His paper won several awards, and the proposed design method has been incorporated into national bridge design specifications.