Presidents’ Award for 2020 Goes to Semonite

ASCE has honored LTG Todd T. Semonite, P.E., Dist.M.ASCE, with the 2020 ASCE Presidents’ Award for the prominent role he played in the Corps’ nationwide effort to build backup hospitals as part of the response to the coronavirus pandemic.

The vision of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is “Engineering solutions for the nation’s toughest challenges.” General Semonite assumed the office of Chief of Engineers in May 2016, and with it, the responsibility for more than 34,000 civilian employees and 750 military personnel who provide project management, construction support and engineering expertise in more than 110 countries. He is also responsible for the training and equipping of the 90,000 active, guard and reserve combat, construction and geotechnical Army engineers.

As chief of engineers, Semonite oversees a massive $48.6 billion construction program, including civil works, military construction, disaster relief and construction management support for major Veterans Administration hospitals and other federal agencies and military organizations. His leadership stresses program execution – delivering a quality of product on time and within budget. He is frequently on the road meeting with project managers and local, state and federal elected officials to support and inspire people to deliver solutions for meeting the nation’s toughest engineering and construction challenges, particularly in the aftermath of devastating disasters in Puerto Rico, Houston and California over the past two years.

Semonite’s 40-plus years of engineering and construction experience, following his graduation from West Point in 1979, have included significant positions of responsibility with the Corps of Engineers and the Army. His leadership has included disaster response and construction as a result of Superstorm Sandy in the Northeast; construction support to the Southern Command in Central and South America; and program and project management for construction in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Retired Lieutenant General Tom Bostick, professional engineer and ASCE Distinguished Member, says of General Semonite: “Few leaders I know have accomplished so much for the nation during peace and war as Todd Semonite. Not only does he find a way to accomplish the impossible, he does so while inspiring his people.”

Semonite was awarded ASCE’s OPAL leadership award in the category of Construction in 2019.

The ASCE Presidents’ Award commemorates the nation’s first president, who was a civil engineer and land surveyor. The award recognizes an ASCE member’s distinguished service to his or her country.


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