PSEC Awards

Last Modified: October 24, 2023
by Dave

Engineer of the Year Awards

Nominations Open 2024 Engineer of the Year

Nominations are open for the 2024 PSEC Engineer of the Year awards. It is time to recognize members of your societies.  Awards will be presented at the May 4, 2024, PSEC Engineering Awards Banquet at the Museum of Flight.  Please identify deserving members of your societies and submit nominations to the Awards Committee by 5:00 p.m. on Friday, March 1, 2024. Download the nomination package below. If you have any questions, please contact John Schaufelburger at jesbcon@uw.edu.

Nomination Package

During Engineer’s Week each year, the Puget Sound Engineering Council (PSEC) conducts an Awards Banquet, to celebrate our engineering profession – a rewarding profession that makes the world a better place; and to recognize our colleagues who have excelled in their achievements.  The Awards Banquet is held every February during Engineer’s Week at the Museum of Flight.

It is essential that our Awards be made to truly outstanding engineers possessing strong histories of achievement, in order to make the celebration of our profession noteworthy and meaningful.

Each of our member Societies is aware of engineers whose achievements are worthy of recognition.  Please consider outstanding engineers known to your Society and nominate worthy candidates for the following awards:

Each Society may Nominate one candidate for each Award.

Current Award Recipients

The following award recipients were honored at the most recent Awards Banquet.

  • Academic Engineer of the Year 2023

    Professor Pedro Arduino, Ph. D.

    University of Washington

    Professor Pedro Arduino, Ph. D., University of Washington, has been selected as the recipient of the 2023 Academic Engineer of the Year Award in recognition of his exceptional career as a geotechnical engineering educator, his significant contributions to the development and application of advanced numerical modeling techniques for analysis of soil behavior and the behavior of soil-structure interfaces, and his dedicated efforts as a teacher and mentor of engineering students.

    He is a nationally and internationally recognized leader in computational geomechanics. He has been instrumental in the development of constitutive models of soils subjected to earthquake shaking, the development of advanced finite element models for soil-structure interaction, and experiential study of granular soils under complex loading conditions. He has been active in the development of the OpenSees finite element package that has the unusual ability of modeling both soils and structural elements, thus allowing direct investigations of nonlinear soil-structure interaction. He has also been a pioneer in the development of Material Point Method models that can be used to analyze particulate flow slides and to estimate forces due to the impact and damming effects of debris carried by tsunamis.

    He has been recognized as one of the best and most popular instructors in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering. He is known for his clear and enthusiastic style of lecturing and for being an early adapter of technology in the classroom. He has revamped the graduate soil mechanics laboratory course by installing new testing and automated data acquisition equipment. He also strengthened the graduate curriculum by developing new courses in computational geomechanics and constitutive modeling.

    He also has served as an academic leader. He served as Associated Dean of the College of Engineering and as Associate Chair of the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering.

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  • Government Engineer of the Year 2023

    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.

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  • Industry Engineer of the Year 2023

    Steven Chisholm

    The Boeing Company

    Steven Chisholm, The Boeing Company, has been selected as the recipient of the 2023 Industry Engineer of the Year Award in recognition of his many contributions to the aviation industry as a mechanical and structural engineer; his leadership in ensuring the structural integrity of Boeing products; and his contributions to the aviation industry in the areas of safety, regulatory activity, advanced composites, and additive manufacturing.

    As Vice President and Functional Chief Engineer for Mechanical and Structural Engineering (MSE), he leads the integration of people, practices, and tools for the MSE function across all business units within the company. He dedicated most of the last 36 years contributing to airplane safety. For more than a decade, he assessed the structural integrity of individual airplanes, reviewed and approved structural repairs, and interfaced with airline customers on maintaining the safety of their airplanes. He led the Federal Aviation Administration-sponsored industry group responsible for publication of industry guidance on mandatory actions for service issues, rulemaking on addressing in-service corrosion, and maintenance programs for addressing the potential for widespread fatigue damage. He led efforts in the industry to continue development of advanced composites and expand their use in airplane structures. He collaborated with external partners, both international and domestic, to explore more efficient airplane manufacturing processes to reduce airplane weight and to expand the ability to recycle airplane components.

    He has made an indelible impact in the field of engineering. His technical and business leadership have positioned Boeing for success and helped create a pipeline of future talent for the company. His efforts to advance women have significantly amplified their voices within Boeing and in the industry.

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  • Kenneth W. Porter Award 2023

    Nicole Peden

    Davido Consulting Group, Inc.

    Nicole Peden, Davido Consulting Group, Inc., has been selected as the recipient of the 2023 Kenneth W. Porter Award in recognition of her many contributions to the education of K-12 students, her service as K-12 Outreach Chair for the American Society of Civil Engineers Younger Member’s Forum; her participation in Discovery Days and the Popsicle Stick Bridge Competition, her development of virtual K-12 outreach events during the pandemic, and her commitment to developing interest in engineering among K-12 students.  

    Soon after graduation from the University of Washington, she joined the American Society of Civil Engineers Younger Member’s Forum (YMF) and agreed to become the K-12 Outreach Chair during the height of the pandemic. Her goals were to work on rebuilding a network of students, volunteers, and organizations since most museums, schools, and facilities closed and no longer had in-person events. She recruited YMF volunteers to participate in various virtual events. Once in-person opportunities returned, she organized in-person events and recruited YMF volunteers to participate in them. During the summer of 2022, she arranged for YMF to host a rotation during the Museum of Flight’s Fly Forward summer in-person program. For this event, she organized an activity for middle school students to create spaghetti structures and learn about structural engineering basics. Later in the autumn, she arranged for YMF to host a booth at the Museum of Flight’s Back to School Spacewalk for middle school students. The students made marshmallow and toothpick structures and asked questions about civil engineering and the volunteers’ STEM experiences. This event showcased careers in various engineering disciplines. Dedicated to outreach of K-12 students, she is passionate about inspiring future engineers, especially women engineers.

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  • Young Engineer of the Year 2023

    Philip B. Yu

    Mott MacDonald, LLC

    Philip B. Yu, Mott MacDonald, LLC, has been selected as the recipient of the 2023 Young Engineer of the Year Award in recognition of his excellent work as a marine structural engineer working on multiple marine projects along both the east and west coasts, his mentorship of junior engineers, and his service as advisor to the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) University of Washington Student Chapter.

    Since graduating from the University of Washington, he has been involved with the Seattle Section’s ASCE Younger Member’s Forum. He served as an At-Large Chair and assisted in organizing the annual Popsicle Stick Bridge Competition and served as the co-organizer and an instructor for the Fundamentals of Engineering Review Course. Later he became the Practitioner Advisor for the University of Washington ASCE Student Chapter and provided academic and professional development advice to the chapter officers. He is an Engineer-in-Training and in the process of pursing a Professional Engineer license in California.

    As a marine structural engineer, he has provided engineering services on over 30 marine projects for a variety of public entities along the east and west coasts. From structural inspections, conceptual designs, and alternative analyses to submittal reviews and punch list site visits, he has worked on both recreational and commercial facilities of various sizes, including boat launches, breakwaters, marinas, piers, and wharves. Over the past year, he has assumed more responsibility at his company by being given entire deliverables to develop, junior engineers to lead and mentor, a client to focus on for business development, a university to engage with for recruitment, and an internal training program to conduct focusing on project risk, ethics, and finance.

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  • Professional Engineer of the Year 2023

    Donald G. Anderson, Ph. D., P. E., G. E.

    Jacobs Engineering Group

    Donald G. Anderson, Jacobs Engineering Group, has been selected as the recipient of the 2023 Professional Engineer of the Year Award in recognition of his outstanding service to the engineering profession and his lifetime achievements in the geotechnical design of numerous infrastructure projects throughout the Pacific Northwest including transportation, water storage and conveyance, wastewater treatment, and environmental restoration.

    He has a long history of providing geotechnical engineering leadership and consultation on major projects in the Seattle area, as well as projects across the United States and Canada. He provides specialized expertise in the areas of earthquake engineering and soil dynamics. His work on highway and bridge projects involved geotechnical design of cut and fill slopes, approach fills, deep foundations, spread footings, and retaining walls. His work on port and harbor projects included design of deep foundations, embankment stability analysis, dredging studies, pile installation monitoring, and pile-load testing. His work on water storage and treatment facilities involved determination of foundation support requirements, earth pressures on buried walls, and seismic design criteria.

    He has been actively involved in the advancement of geotechnical earthquake engineering and soil dynamics. He participated in the development of seismic ground motion design requirements included in the International Building Code and in United States and Canadian Building Codes. He has been an active participant in community affairs and technical society engagement. He has served as vice-chair and chair of the Seattle area American Society of Civil Engineers Geotechnical Group as well as a board director of the group.

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Guide for Preparation of PSEC Engineer-of-the-Year Nominations

The PSEC awards program is intended to honor truly outstanding engineers possessing strong histories of achievement.  Please nominate worthy candidates for this honor. Present their qualifications completely, accurately without exaggeration, and consistent with the criteria presented on the Nomination forms.  Also attach their resume.

A panel of judges will evaluate the nominations to identify the best nominee for each award.  The judges are experienced engineers charged with identifying the best candidate for each honor; their deliberations are private; their decisions are final; if no candidate is found worthy of the honor no award will be made.

In grading Nominations for:

  • Academic Engineer of the Year
  • Government Engineer of the Year
  • Industry Engineer of the Year
  • The Kenneth W. Porter Award

The first and second requested information items encompass the award criteria items and will receive 75% of the grade.

  • Nominee’s demonstration of Award Criteria above
  • General biography and summary of qualifications

The additional requested information items are supportive and will receive 25% of the grade.


In grading nominations for Young Engineer of the Year, the following requested information items will receive the weighting listed:

  • Professional background including Society Affiliations             20%
  • Education/Engineering Credentials (PE/EIT progress)              20%
  • Professional/Educational achievements and awards                40%
  • Community, Civic and Charitable involvement                        20%

In grading nominations for Professional Engineer of the Year, the following Award Criteria items will receive the weighting listed:

  • Has made significant contributions in the application of engineering to meet community needs      40%
  • Has significantly advanced the art of engineering                                                                         30%
  • Has actively participated in community affairs & technical societies                                              30%

In grading nominations for K-12 STEM Engineering Teacher of the Year, the following Award Criteria items will receive the weighting listed:

  • Has actively worked in promoting and advancing STEM Engineering related education at the local K-12 level for 5 or more years       20%
  • Has worked closely with local engineering societies on STEM Engineering related education                                                             35%
  • Has performed exceptional activities towards improving K-12 STEM Engineering related education                                                  45%

It will help if you fill out the Nomination form electronically, and copy their resume into the same Word file.  Rename the file with the Nominee’s name & the Award name (for example:  John Smith – Young Engineer Award.docx). 

 Keep the Nomination submittals to a maximum of 8 pages.