March 13, 2019

AAWRE proudly announce P. Kay Whitlock, P.E., D.WRE, F.ASCE as the recipient of the 2019 Service to the Academy Award, for her indelible contributions to the AAWRE, championing post-license board certification, and advancing the practice in water resources engineering.

The AAWRE Service to the Academy Award was established in 2014 to recognize a Diplomate or Honorary Diplomate who has demonstrated outstanding and exemplary service and contributions to the Academy.

Ms. Whitlock served as a founding Board member from 2004 through 2011, serving as President in 2010. She served as Chair of the AAWRE Bylaws Committee, Eminence Committee, and Nominations Committee. She has also served on the Admissions Committee from 2007-2012 and organized and participated on many panel oral exams of D.WRE candidates.

Ms. Whitlock is a renowned expert in areas of water resource management, stormwater management, flood control, water and natural resource engineering, federal, state and local funding and legislative testimony for project authorizations. Kay served as Co-Chair of the ASCE’s Task Committee on Flood Safety Policies and Practices in 2014 - a committee established by ASCE to examine the findings put forth in the 2007 report of the External Review Panel entitled The New Orleans Hurricane Protection System: What Went Wrong and Why—to examine the response to the call for action issued in the report. In 2017, she was appointed to serve on the National Research Council’s Water Science and Technology Board (WSTB), a board that operates under The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine.

Ms. Whitlock is currently the Vice-President at Christopher B. Burke Engineering, Ltd. (CBBEL), based in Rosemont, Illinois. She is a graduate of University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and as part of the Master Civil Engineering team, Whitlock currently manages the hydrology, hydraulics and water resource permitting for the O’Hare Modernization Program. In 2005, she worked with the Metropolitan Water Reclamation District to develop the Stormwater Management Plan for Cook County. Kay also co-chairs the Advisory Board for the Prairie Research Institute (PRI) at the University of Illinois. The PRI Advisory Board advises U of I’s Vice Chancellor for Research. PRI houses the scientific research arms of Illinois including: Illinois State Water Survey, Illinois Natural History Survey, Illinois Geological Survey, Illinois Sustainable Technology Center and Illinois Archeological Survey.

Kay stated the following on her recognition and early days of launching the AAWRE:

"I was so very honored when I received notification of the Service to the Academy Award.  Then I was doubly honored when I learned that I was nominated by three pre-eminent D.WRE’s.  

In hindsight, creating an entirely new Academy within ASCE looks easy.  However, looking back on the early days of the Task Committee, I recall being overwhelmed at the first (Denver) meeting with the complexity of the many tasks before us.   The mission to raise the bar for civil engineering was compelling.  One aspect of our work that I found fascinating, was that a group of water resource engineers were pulled together and although many of us didn’t know the others,  we immediately focused on the job – we just got to work.  It’s what we do; we tackle the problem and we get to work… and with confidence."


>To send a congratulatory note to Kay