July 16, 2018

AAWRE says ‘Thank you’ to At-Large Trustee Phil Turnipseed, P.E., D.WRE, M.ASCE as he recently resigned from service on the AAWRE Board due to his wife Cindy’s health condition. Phil was recognized during the AAWRE Induction & Awards Ceremony on June 4 in Minneapolis, however, he was not able to attend in person.

Phil served on the AAWRE Board of Trustees from 2014-2018, serving as chair of the AAWRE Bylaws Committee and Eminence Committee. In his 30-year career with the U.S. Geological Survey as a hydrologic water resources engineer, Phil served as the Center Director of the USGS National Wetlands Research Center, the principal USGS liaison to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, the International Joint Commission, and the Environment Canada Ministry. He began his USGS career in 1987 as a civil engineer working in hydraulic bridge design in cooperation with the Mississippi Department of Transportation. In his 30 years of federal service, Turnipseed has worked at USGS science centers in Mississippi, Texas, Virginia, and Louisiana conducting a wide array of hydrologic and hydraulic research, hydrologic monitoring design and construction, ecosystem research and geospatial analysis. He has authored or co-authored over 70 peer-reviewed reports, posters and scientific papers.

In 2015, Phil launched his consulting firm Turnipseed Consulting. In 2008 Phil participated in an interagency effort with the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE), Bureau of Reclamation (Reclamation), and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). In December 2008, this effort published an interagency climate circular that explores strategies to improve water management by tracking, anticipating, and responding to climate change. This report, entitled Climate change and water resources management: A federal perspective, describes the existing and still needed underpinning science crucial to addressing the many impacts of climate change on water resources management and represents the first major documentation by 4 of the Nation's leading water agencies to address climate change science with respect to water resources management.

In 2010, Phil and Vernon B. Sauer published revisions (available for download free of charge through the hyperlinks below) to two important USGS standards used by the water resources monitoring community throughout the world.  The two standards Techniques and Methods Book 3, Chapters A7 and A8 entitled “Stage measurement at gaging statons” and “Discharge measurements at gaging stations,” respectively, are revisions to the Techniques for Water Resources Investigations Book 3, Chapters A7 and A8 published in the 1960s and bring much these two techniques and methods of USGS standards for measuring river stage and discharge into the 21st Century.

Phil was born in Greenwood, Mississippi in the heart of the Mississippi River alluvial floodplain (known as the Mississippi Delta). He served the Smithsonian Institution/Peace Corps in the Andes Mountains of Ecuador (1977-79). He has lived and/or worked on 5 continents in the past 30 years and speaks and writes fluent Spanish and limited French. He is a registered professional engineer in Mississippi and has been a member of the American Society of Civil Engineers since 1984. Phil and his wife, Cindy, have one daughter, four sons, and one grandson. Phil and Cindy reside in Breaux Bridge, Louisiana.

Phil reflected on his service and future of AAWRE:

“It was the most significant privilege of my career to serve on the AAWRE Board of Trustees. The Academy is paramount in the future success of water resources and civil engineering in America and the world. The AAWRE serves as the standard for our industry and its continued improvement. I believe it is evident that the AAWRE has taken professional development of those in water resources engineering several significant steps further with enhanced continuing education requirements that help ensure our profession continues to be the best in the world.”