Lifetime Achievement Award

EBJ LIFETIME ACHIEVEMENT AWARD FOR BUSINESS

Jack Bedessem for a long and distinguished career leading Trihydro to become a regional leader in the environmental industry. Trihydro Corporation (Laramie, Wyo.), an engineering and environmental consulting firm, was founded 37 years ago. Jack Bedessem joined Trihydro in 1988 as the Company’s 12th employee. In his 33 years with Trihydro, he served in a variety of roles, including the company’s first Vice President of Engineering, Chief Finance Officer, Chairman of the Board, and ultimately President and CEO.  Under Bedessem’s executive leadership, Trihydro grew from 200 employees to nearly 500 employees with 21 offices nationwide. Throughout Trihydro’s growth, Bedessem maintained a corporate structure and culture predicated upon leaving things “better than you found it” – including client relationships, communities, and the environment. His legacy is an environmental firm committed to empowering people and conducting business the “right way.”  Trihydro’s acceptance of several prestigious awards over the years is a testament to Bedessem’s accomplishments in service to the environmental industry. Since 2006, the Wyoming Business Journal has ranked Trihydro as the state’s largest engineering firm. Zweig White ranked Trihydro as a Hot Firm for 10 consecutive years (2004-2013). Trihydro has been an ENR Top 200 Environmental Firm for 16 consecutive years, was recognized as one of America’s Safest Companies in 2009, and received the 2019 Best Overall Safety Culture award from the EHS Daily Advisor.

 

EBJ LIFETIME ACHIEVEMENT AWARD FOR BUSINESS

Lauren Evans, PE ENV SP, for entrepreneurial energy and more than four decades serving the environmental industry with a focus on environmental regulations, remediation, and sustainability. Ms. Evans founded Pinyon Environmental, Inc. (Lakewood, Colo.) in 1993; the firm now employs approximately 70 staff members. She started the firm based on the belief that clients deserve ethical business practices and intelligent, cost-conscious solutions. During her tenure, her company has reached annual revenues of $10 million and completed over 20,000 projects for over 1,450 clients across the United States. She has implemented innovative corporate tools including open book management, the balanced scorecard, predictive leading indicators, and an employee stock ownership plan (ESOP). 2022 marks the year that the ESOP will replace her as majority owner of the firm. With an eye on technology for clients and inside the firm, she led the creation of an innovation and optimization department at Pinyon to develop and implement new technologies for application on the company’s projects. Ms. Evans is a past president of The American Council of Engineering Companies of Colorado (ACEC/CO), has chaired or served on numerous ACEC committees, and actively participates in industry organizations. Her honors include being named ACEC/CO Outstanding Woman in Engineering, and Colorado Business in Ethics award winner. Ms. Evans is a long-standing champion of raising public awareness and understanding and appreciation of the engineering profession.

 

EBJ LIFETIME ACHIEVEMENT AWARD FOR NON-PROFIT

Daniel K. Moon for more than 26 years at the helm of the Environmental Business Council of New England (EBC) as President and Executive Director, growing the organization from 45 member companies to 220 and expanding from 15 programs a year to more than 100. Before joining EBC, Dan graduated from Northeastern University with a degree in Chemical Engineering, earned an MBA from San Francisco State University, served at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, and owned Longwood Environmental Management, providing marketing, networking, conference, and directory services to the New England environmental industry. Dan was also a co-founder of the New England Environmental Expo, an early marquis event featuring environmental services and products. Dan became Executive Director and President of EBC in 1995. Under Dan’s leadership, the EBC expanded its programs through a thematic committee structure and created formal chapters in Rhode Island, New Hampshire, and Connecticut. The EBC’s financial position strengthened even during the recent pandemic, with participation via web-based programming increasing dramatically. Because of Dan’s foresight, commitment, and genuine competency, the EBC has become a preeminent trade organization and a respected regional voice for the environmental industry. 

 

EBJ LIFETIME ACHIEVEMENT AWARD FOR BUSINESS & EBJ EARTH SCIENCE PIONEER AWARD

Dr. Steven W. Carothers, founder and senior scientist at SWCA Environmental Consultants (Phoenix, Ariz.), for more than 40 years of service in ecological research, environmental regulatory compliance and resource management. An aquatic and terrestrial biologist, Dr. Carothers has long served as a facilitator between the environmental regulatory structure and various forms of resource use and management, both private and public. He has written and co-authored numerous books on the ecology of the Grand Canyon and is a respected expert on the Endangered Species Act and the National Environmental Policy Act. In 1981, Dr. Carothers founded SWCA Environmental Consultants, one of the largest purely environmental,  natural resource consulting, and engineering companies in the United States. Dr. Carothers and his team have been involved with monitoring the impacts of the Glen Canyon Dam. In the 1970s, he revolutionized the way the NPS handled a staggering volume of human waste on river trips, a process still used today. He’s worked extensively on river systems in the Southwest, including Verde and Colorado Rivers.

Dr. Carothers founded SWCA as a sole proprietorship and assertively and creatively carved out a niche for the company when environmental consulting was an infant industry. He built a sound foundation for the company’s future growth, in large part by assembling a key team of entrepreneurial-minded specialists (mostly biologists and archaeologists), whom he encouraged and trusted to assume leadership positions in the company. In the late 1990s, he transitioned company ownership to the employees through an Employee Stock Ownership Plan (ESOP)–SWCA has been 100% employee owned for more than 20 years. Dr. Carothers was succeeded as executive leader of SWCA, first by Ron Borkan in 1999, then by John Thomas in 2005, and then by Joseph Fluder in 2018, all three of whom began their environmental consulting careers at SWCA, rose through the ranks, and were mentored by Dr. Carothers through SWCA’s tagline, “Sound Science, Creative Solutions.” Dr. Carothers remains with the firm as a research scientist, a member of the Board of Directors, and as the heart of a firm he has seen grow from $20,000 a year in gross revenue to more than $150,000,000 with over 1,200 employees across the United States.

As a scientist, Dr. Carothers has focused his research interests on Southwestern riverine and riparian habitats, beginning with an avian study in the 1970s along Arizona’s Verde River that revealed the highest density of nesting birds yet recorded in the continental United States. That finding saved one of the largest native riparian forests left in the state and helped spawn a movement that helped preserve dwindling native riparian habitat throughout the Southwest. His years of work in Grand Canyon contributed to a better understanding of human impacts. Dr. Carothers’ interest in endangered species began in Arizona but soon spread far afield. In Texas, SWCA took a leadership role in developing Habitat Conservation Plans (HCPs) for golden-cheeked warblers, black-capped vireos, several species of karst invertebrates, and salamanders soon after those species were federally listed. In 2022, Dr. Carothers is studying the recent expansion of nesting Canada Geese into Grand Canyon and serves on SWCA’s consulting team for the Williamson County, Texas, Regional HCP.

 

EBJ EARTH SCIENCE PIONEER AWARD 

Curtis Uptain, principal biologist at Quad Knopf (QK, Visalia, Calif.), for conducting biological resource inventories and studies in the southwestern United States for more than 40 years, focusing on federal and state listed endangered species of California’s San Joaquin Valley and Mojave Desert. He has experience with restoration of arid lands and has been involved in a wide variety of projects that include housing and urban development, transportation, pipelines and transmission lines, cogeneration plants, solar and geothermal, mining and waste treatment, and restoration and management of retired farmlands. He has documented the results of research, surveys, and biological analyses in various types of technical reports and CEQA and NEPA documents, and has prepared Incidental Take Permit applications, Mitigation and Monitoring Plans, and Habitat Conservation Plans. He has extensive experience with environmental permitting and coordination with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) and California Department of Fish and Wildlife on biological permitting and natural environment Studies. Curtis holds federal and state permits to trap and handle many threatened and endangered species of the San Joaquin Valley and Mojave Desert and is a member of The Wildlife Society, National, Western Section and San Joaquin Valley Chapter, a life member of the American Society of Mammalogists, and received a Certificate of Recognition from USFWS for conservation of endangered species.

Note: EBJ’s Earth Science Pioneer Award was inaugurated for the 2021 class of EBJ Business Achievement Awards to recognize lifetime contributions of leaders and innovators across the earth sciences, and not necessarily in the domains of business.

 

DRILLING HALL OF FAME INDUCTEE

William Poupis, senior vice president of operations at Cascade Environmental (Mineola, N.Y.), has served the drilling and environmental services industries for 40 years with technology development, innovative applications, recognition of important trends and mentorship. After earning a degree in geology, Poupis worked in oil drilling, developing downhole instrumentation and perfecting horizontal drilling technology. He then began applying the same innovations to environmental drilling. In 1992, Poupis was part of an eight-person team that developed and implemented the equipment to install two of the first horizontal wells for environmental purposes. He was President of West Hazmat Drilling before serving as Vice President of Aquifer Drilling & Testing (ADT). It was here Poupis recognized the significance of sonic technology and invested resources in acquiring rigs and training. The new division became a major source of revenue, and his forward thinking helped established ADT as the region’s preferred contractor. ADT was acquired by Cascade Environmental in 2015, and Poupis was promoted to Senior Vice President of Drilling. Throughout his career, Poupis has mentored employees about drilling techniques, crew management, the ins and outs of bidding work, maintaining positive client relationships, and more. More recently, he’s hosted webinars and written blog posts to help junior members of the industry in their professional growth.

Note: EBJ’s inaugurated the EBJ Drilling Hall of Fame for the 2021 class of EBJ Business Achievement Awards to recognize lifetime contributions of leaders and innovators in the world of environmental drilling. Bill Poupis joins posthumous inductee Tom Oothoudt, also recognized with the 2021 class.

Bob Uhler and Steve Vanderboom with their environmental Business Journal lifetime achievement awards in 2019

Flanked by Grant Ferrier of environmental Business Journal and Steve Maxwell of the ebj editorial Advisory Board

 

EBJ LIFETIME ACHIEVEMENT AWARD: Previous Honorees

2021
Pam Hall, Normandeau Associates, Inc.
Paul Zofnass, Environmental Financial Consulting Group
Dr. Loren D. Jensen, EA Engineering, Science, and Technology, Inc., PBC

2020
John W. Mogge Jr., PhD, AIA, REM, FSAME, Jacobs and predecessor CH2M Hill
Dr. Paul Fennelly, AECOM and predecessor ENSR

2019
Bob Uhler, MWH Global
Steve Vanderboom, Pace Analytical Services

Inaugural EBJ LAA Recipient in 2010
Ralph Peterson, CH2M Hill