By Jim Frisinger
U.S. Army Corps of Engineers
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has given Rumanda K. Young of Fort Worth the Lt. Gen. John W. Morris Civilian of the Year Award, which recognizes the single civilian employee achieving the highest overall standards of excellence.
The award was presented Aug. 7 at the National Awards Dinner at the Strategic Leader Conference in Fort Belvoir, Virginia. There are 34,000 Corps of Engineers civilians delivering engineering services to customers in some 90 countries worldwide.
Young teaches in SMU's Master of Sustainability Program, including environmental policies, sustainable methods and renewable technologies. In addition, she mentors students in master's level courses.
The award was established by Lt. Gen. John W. Morris, Chief of Engineers (1976-1980), under the auspices of the Corps of Engineers Historical Foundation. It recognizes the employee who individually has made the most significant and noteworthy contributions to the mission, reputation and prestige of the Corps of Engineers – including significant participation in areas outside the workplace – in the past calendar year.
Young is chief of the Master Planning Section of the Fort Worth District’s Regional Planning and Environmental Center and also serves as regional energy program manager for the Corps’ Southwestern Division in Dallas.
"Dr. Young’s pioneering work in master planning and resource management, and her teaching and mentorship of students and staff, represent a new generation of leadership that is advancing the Department of Defense energy sustainment mission," said Col. Charles H. Klinge, the Fort Worth District commander.
She was nominated for successfully using a collaborative, enterprise approach across Corps of Engineer divisions to develop new planning and other assessment projects that support the Army, Air Force and Marines. She is leading a team, under a $1.22 million Department of Defense grant, to develop a new analytic tool to help reduce energy consumption at military installations worldwide. The Pentagon is the largest single tenant in the country, managing 300,000 buildings. DoD facilities spent $4.1 billion on energy in Fiscal Year 2011.
This pilot program at Fort Hood in Killeen, Texas, and Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam in Hawaii, supports the Corps’ goal of helping the Army and the nation achieve energy security and sustainability goals – reducing energy dependence, increasing energy efficiency and adopting renewable and alternative energy sources.
Young joined the Fort Worth District in 2005. She holds a bachelor’s degree in landscape architecture from the University of Arkansas and both a master’s degree in city and regional planning and a doctorate in environmental planning and public policy from the University of Texas at Arlington. She teaches at both UTA and SMU. Young earlier won the 2013 Society of American Military Engineers Lt. Gen. Raymond A. Wheeler Medal and was the 2012 USACE Landscape Architect of the Year.