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Posted 10/3/2016

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By Rick Brown

The American Society of Civil Engineers Sacramento Section awarded their 2016 Charles S. Pope Construction Award to Sacramento District’s Mega Project Center Director David Thomas last week for his work leading the Joint Federal Project in Folsom, California.

The award recognizes engineers in the Sacramento region who have provided outstanding service to construction and engineering, and Thomas’ role in managing the Folsom Dam auxiliary spillway project was specifically highlighted for this year’s honor.

“He has led more than 100 professionals to execute one of the most complex and challenging projects in the country,” said Kyle Dushane, senior director for the ASCE Sacramento Section. “His leadership, management of business operations, and innovative thinking contribute directly to the successful completion of the Folsom Dam project.”

Thomas took the helm of the project in 2012. He has since put the project a year ahead of schedule and has helped keep the project under budget, while helping to meet California’s 200-year flood risk reduction goal for approximately a million people in the Sacramento region.

“The JFP is the brainchild of 44 different resources, including 22 Corps districts, 11 architecture and engineering firms, 7 federal agencies, and 4 state agencies,” Thomas explained. “That team delivered an enterprise solution to meet our commitment and the expectations of Congress and its constituents.”

Thomas continued, “I’m really honored to receive the Charles Pope Award but it’s not about me, it’s about the collaborative success of the team.”

The award’s namesake, Charles Pope, was a professional engineer in the early 1900s and at one time had charge of California’s state prison camps, construction of the state’s heavy mountain roads, and the rehabilitation of the prisoners who helped build them. He served in numerous positions with ASCE, including one term as president of the Sacramento chapter.

The Joint Federal Project is designed to implement dam safety and flood risk reduction features at Folsom Dam and associated facilities to help prevent catastrophic flooding in the Sacramento region. The auxiliary spillway is on track for completion by October 2017.

Folsom Lake Dam JFP Joint Federal Project sacramento district USACE