Passing the Gavel: Welcoming a New Board President

Serving as the Engineers Without Borders USA (EWB-USA) Board President has been one of the most rewarding experiences of my life. EWB-USA is fortunate to have thousands of highly skilled students, professionals and retirees bringing their stories and experiences to bear on EWB-USA programs and projects. Every encounter with EWB-USA’s diverse and passionate members has been memorable, and I’ve learned so much from this group’s many different life experiences.

The future of EWB-USA is so exciting. We continue to see new growth and opportunities for our programs, and that growth is matched by the maturation of how we deliver projects that better serve communities across the globe. As EWB-USA opens more country offices and expands our field operations, we’re increasing our impact and getting closer to our vision of a world in which every community has the capacity to sustainably meet their basic human needs. Wouldn’t it be something if we worked ourselves out of a job by achieving that vision?!

One of the truly special things about EWB-USA is our openness to new things and agility. As we enter our sixteenth year, we’ve stabilized processes and learned where we fit in the international development marketplace, but have not lost our youthful optimism, outlook, flexibility and responsiveness. I’m really proud that EWB-USA has professionalized and improved operations without succumbing to the pitfalls of bureaucracy. Our core values of service, collaboration, sustainability, learning, safety and ethical conduct are alive and well, and I am confident that they will remain our guideposts to keep engineering change where its needed most.

I am humbled by the extraordinary members, staff and leadership of this organization and am grateful to have been invited to contribute. Though my time as Board President has come to a close, I look forward to opportunities to continue to serve.

Now it’s time to pass the gavel.

It’s truly an honor to introduce you to our new Board President, Joe Adams. During his distinguished engineering career with MWH Global, now part of Stantec, he was responsible for the strategy and management of a $400 million engineering and science unit that comprised 1,500 staff working in 25 countries. He also served as President of the Design Consortium for the Third Set of Locks at the Panama Canal.

Joe is someone I think of as the epitome of the servant-leader. He is humble, thoughtful, generous and compassionate. That combination makes for an exceptional leader, and we are fortunate to benefit through his service to and participation in EWB-USA. I can’t wait to see what EWB-USA can achieve with Joe at the helm in 2018.  

About the Author
Kathy Caldwell
Kathy Caldwell is a civil engineer and joined EWB-USA in 2007. She has served on the EWB-USA Board of Directors since 2013, and is currently completing her second term as EWB-USA’s Past President. Kathy is also a Past President of the American Society of Civil Engineers.