Several factors influenced Nancy’s choice of a geotechnical engineering career. “Math came easily to me, and I always liked playing with dirt and water. I almost went into river hydrology, but I was attracted to the geotechnical discipline because it allows me to get out into the field and the design answers are not always formulated by equations.”
As a project manager in GeoEngineers’ Redmond office, Nancy designs and consults on shallow and deep foundations, pipelines, slope stability and dam safety. She especially enjoys collaborating with colleagues to come up with the best solution for a client. “I like that this field relies on a lot of experience for design and problem solving,” Nancy reflects.
One memorable project demonstrates the collaborative creative thinking that Nancy prizes. “The Olympic Pipeline Span Protection project near Bellingham (WA) called for constructing foundations on a steep bank within 20 feet of a pristine creek. “The client decided the pipeline needed a bullet-proof covering, yet it could not be heavy, due to structural considerations. I was able to research and find a suitable ballistic-rated covering, which was outside of my typical area of expertise. We also worked closely with the structural engineer and foundation contractor to successfully design and install the foundation support system while protecting the creek.”
Nancy is passionate about gardening and admires old, beautiful tree specimens. Her enjoyment of playing in the dirt extends to her yard at home, where she has installed retaining walls and built several raised garden beds. She also likes to snowboard, hike and read, and has belonged to the same book club for more than 25 years.