District Digest News Stories

Program manager recognized as ‘Modern-Day Technology Leader’

Nashville District Public Affairs
Published Feb. 18, 2022
Officials recognized Kimberly Edwards, Hydropower Remote Operations Program manager with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Nashville District Operations Division, as a “Modern-Day Technology Leader” during the 36th Black Engineer of the Year Awards Technology Recognition Ceremony Feb. 18, 2022, in Washington D.C. She is seen here Feb. 15, 2022, at Old Hickory Dam Hydropower Plant in Hendersonville, Tennessee. (USACE Photo by Lee Roberts)

Officials recognized Kimberly Edwards, Hydropower Remote Operations Program manager with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Nashville District Operations Division, as a “Modern-Day Technology Leader” during the 36th Black Engineer of the Year Awards Technology Recognition Ceremony Feb. 18, 2022, in Washington D.C. She is seen here Feb. 15, 2022, at Old Hickory Dam Hydropower Plant in Hendersonville, Tennessee. (USACE Photo by Lee Roberts)

Officials recognized Kimberly Edwards, Hydropower Remote Operations Program manager with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Nashville District Operations Division, as a “Modern-Day Technology Leader” during the 36th Black Engineer of the Year Awards Technology Recognition Ceremony Feb. 18, 2022, in Washington D.C. She is seen here Feb. 15, 2022, at Old Hickory Dam Hydropower Plant in Hendersonville, Tennessee. (USACE Photo by Lee Roberts)

Officials recognized Kimberly Edwards, Hydropower Remote Operations Program manager with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Nashville District Operations Division, as a “Modern-Day Technology Leader” during the 36th Black Engineer of the Year Awards Technology Recognition Ceremony Feb. 18, 2022, in Washington D.C. She is seen here Feb. 15, 2022, at Old Hickory Dam Hydropower Plant in Hendersonville, Tennessee. (USACE Photo by Lee Roberts)

WASHINGTON D.C. (Feb. 18, 2021) – Officials honored the Hydropower Remote Operations Program manager with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Nashville District as a “Modern-Day Technology Leader” during the 36th Black Engineer of the Year Awards’ Technology Recognition Ceremony today at the Omni Shoreham Hotel.

Kimberly Edwards, who works in the Operations Division, received the honor during the event hosted by Dr. Pamela McCauley, associate dean for Academic Programs, Diversity, Equity and Inclusion at Wilson College of Textiles at North Carolina State University, and Dr. Kendall Harris, provost and vice president of academic affairs at Texas Southern University.

In addressing 400 Modern-Day Technology Leaders and 100 Science Spectrum Trailblazers being recognized at the BEYA event, McCauley and Harris congratulated them all for their respective accomplishments in numerous STEM related career fields in both public service and private business.

Lt. Col. Joseph Sahl, Nashville District commander, said it is fitting for Edwards to be recognized because of her many achievements, but especially for her innovation and excellence as the Nashville District’s Hydropower Remote Operations Program manager.

“Ms. Edwards is a consummate professional who helps bring a wealth of knowledge and experience to help transform our Hydropower Program and ensure it is a sustainable program for the future,” Sahl said.

“Ms. Edwards is a consummate professional who helps bring a wealth of knowledge and experience to help transform our Hydropower Program and ensure it is a sustainable program for the future,” Sahl said.

Edwards is currently serving on a long-term temporary assignment as a program manager responsible for the overall management, coordination, and execution of a variety of complex and unprecedented assignments related to maximizing operations and maintenance efficiencies in the district’s Hydropower Program.

She volunteered for the assignment from her permanent position as an electrical engineer in the Electronics Service Section within the Technical Support Branch. In that position she coordinates and performs testing and maintenance of electronic and electrical equipment at hydropower plants. She also provides electrical engineering support with plant upgrades and new equipment installations.

Lt. Gen. Scott A. Spellmon, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers commanding general, endorsed Edwards’ nomination as a “Modern-Day Technology Leader” because of her contributions to the USACE mission related to hydropower. In his endorsement, Spellmon said since joining the Nashville District in 2016, Edwards has become an important member and leader within the hydropower community of practice.

“Ms. Edwards’ knowledge and abilities have also been instrumental to the Nashville District’s initiative to transition operations of the hydropower plants to a centralized control center,” Spellmon noted. “Ms. Edwards plays a pivotal role in supporting operations, maintenance, and rehabilitating hydropower components while also gaining efficiencies.”

Tim Dunn, Nashville District Operations Division deputy chief, supervises Edwards and describes her as a leader with lots of initiative. In the six years Edwards has served in the Nashville District, she has established herself as a leader in the Hydropower Program, he said.

“She has become a go-to person for advice, guidance, and direction for all things related to testing and maintaining electronic and electrical equipment at the hydropower plants,” Dunn said. “She routinely interacts with management at the hydropower plants and provides expert advice and counsel, while also coaching, mentoring and advising junior electrical and electronics engineers.

Her role is critical, especially as the district works to rehabilitate 28 hydropower units at nine hydropower plants in the Cumberland River Basin, Dunn explained.

Edwards said she is honored the district nominated her and that BEYA recognized her work as a program manager. She said she attended past BEYA events and always found joy watching others being honored for their accomplishments.

“So, when I found out I would be honored for my contributions as a Modern-Day Technology Leader, I was overjoyed that I was considered as someone that has made similar contributions as the awardees that I often would celebrate,” Edwards said.

Edwards hails from Little Rock, Arkansas. She graduated from Alabama A&M University in 2005 with a Bachelor of Science degree in Electrical Engineering with a concentration in very large-scale integration. Her prior awards and special recognition include USACE Emerging Leader, USACE Huntsville Center Woman of Character Courage and Commitment, Society of American Military Engineers Regional Vice President Medal for Outstanding Service to SAME, and SAME Huntsville, Alabama Post Young Engineer of the Year.

Edwards previously served a project engineer for the Electronics Security Section at Huntsville Center in Huntsville, Alabama, from 2002 to 2016. During that time, she served as lead for the business case analysis that determined which manufacturer of electronic security systems should be installed at Army installations in South Korea. She is also credited for her volunteer work as a member of the Society of American Military Engineers.

Col. Kimberly A. Peeples, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Great Lakes and Ohio River Division commander, also endorsed Edwards’ nomination for BEYA recognition, noting that the public is not aware of the variety of missions and unique careers that are part of the Corps of Engineers.

“They are often unaware of the STEM careers that exist in our workforce, and that African Americans have made their contribution to mission success in some extremely critical fields,” Peeples said. “Ms. Kimberly Edwards serves as a key role model, exemplifying excellence in the Nashville District.”

The Modern-Day Technology Leader Award recognizes bright people who are shaping the future of science, technology, engineering and math. It is a part of the BEYA STEM Outstanding Achievement Award Category. The OAAs are granted to individuals in the workforce. Nomination applications are reviewed and recommended for an award by a panel of leaders from industry, government, and academia.

The public can obtain news, updates and information from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Nashville District on the district’s website at www.lrn.usace.army.mil, on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/nashvillecorps and on Twitter at http://www.twitter.com/nashvillecorps. For more information on the Black Engineer of the Year Awards, go to http://www.beya.org.