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Angela Premo Receives 2011 Murden Award

Angela Y. Premo was honored by the Dredging Contractors of America on May 25 with the William R. Murden Lifetime Public Service award. She retired on March 2, 2011 from a 33-year career in the Corps of Engineers, devoted mainly to dredging and navigation projects and programs.

A West Virginia native, Premo received a bachelors degree in Civil Engineering from West Virginia University in 1977, and worked in the private sector for a year before going to work for the Corps Huntington District. Her first job with the Corps was managing relocation of a natural gas facility and basic road work connected with construction of the Stonewall Jackson Dam near her hometown of Weston, West Virginia.

It was her transfer to the Tampa District in 1979 that got her into dredging, where she worked on the project to deepen the Tampa Harbor entrance channel to 43 feet from an existing 34 feet, and widen the channel to 500 feet from the existing 400 feet. Western Contracting had the contract, using their 42-inch cutter dredge Western Condor. The project removed 12 million cubic yards of material from 26,000 feet of channel. While in Tampa, as both a project engineer and office engineer, she worked on other O&M and coastal dredging projects.

In 1982 she moved to the Savannah District and the job of Military Construction Project Manager, and then in 1985 to the South Atlantic Division (SAD) in Atlanta, where she worked in Operations, Military Construction, Civil Works Programs and Project Management, and then as the Navigation and Dredging Program Manager.

Some of the projects she oversaw during these years included the Savannah Harbor Deepening and the $60 million Miami River environmental cleanup project, as well as all of the O&M work and coastal dredging within the southeastern region. In support of the dredging program she also worked on turtle issues in the Atlantic and Gulf regions, working with Dena Dickerson of the Waterways Experiment Station, Daniel Small of SAD and the District turtle coordinators, and the National Marine Fisheries Service.

In 2009 she was transferred to her final station in the Southwestern Division in Houston, where she was Chief of Operations and Regulatory, moving back to Atlanta in March 2011 after retiring.

Along the way, her work was recognized by the Corps Headquarters, Divisions and Districts.

She was honored with the Bronze de Fleury Award and Meritorious Civilian Service award in 2011, Superior Civilian Service Award in 2006 and 2007, and in 2000 the Achievement Medal.

Premo’s naturally sunny disposition shows through when she talks about her Corps of Engineers career.

“It was a great career – I couldn’t have asked for anything better,” she told IDR recently. “I was a mother and had a career. The COE was probably the best organization I could have worked for and balance being a mother and having a career,” she said, praising her colleagues and supervisors. “I tried to put my kids first,” she said. “I have two girls, and now two grandchildren” who live in the Atlanta area.

Asked about any work plans for the future, she doesn’t rule out a possible consulting job down the road, but for now she plans to focus on her personal life.

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