Kansas City District News Stories

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  • January

    Safety first: Northwestern Division’s occupational health nurse hopes to prioritize health and safety across the division

    Active construction sites can be dangerous places. Full of heavy mechanical equipment and other hazards, the risk posed to the workers at these sites is often high. But there are other, less obvious workplace dangers that even those who spend their days behind a desk can face, like stress, high blood pressure and lack of support or fulfillment. Those charged with preventing and mitigating these workplace dangers play an important role in the success of an organization but are often in the background, working behind the scenes. Occupational health professionals and other safety specialists are the frontline for workplace safety. Yet their services can remain elusive to the very employees they serve.
  • December

    District Officer Introductory Course offers unique learning experience for junior officers

    One common misconception about the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is that most people who work for the agency are in the military. In fact, of the roughly 37,000 people who work for USACE, only about 800 are active-duty military, with the vast majority being civilians. Because there are so few uniformed USACE employees across the enterprise, an annual course was developed to bring them together to learn about the organization from a military perspective. The District Officer Introductory Course is an annual course that is designed to bring junior officers from all over USACE together to learn, collaborate and network. This year’s course was hosted by the St. Louis District in St. Louis, from December 4 to 8. The Kansas City District and the Louisville District both supported the course.
  • November

    Jack of all trades—cartographer, archivist and pilot all in one

    When asked to describe his job, long-time Kansas City District employee John Atkinson has a humorous response. “Jack of all trades, I guess,” he says. Officially, Atkinson serves as the district’s archivist and a cartographer in the Survey and Geospatial Data section. However, Atkinson’s diverse background and skillset, as well as his openness to trying new things, have combined to turn his career into something he never imagined. From deployments to piloting a drone to working with century-old photography, Atkinson’s work with the Kansas City District has been full of surprises.
  • October

    Proud to be Americano: Andy Guzman celebrates his Hispanic heritage

    In Spanish, America refers to the land that is both North and South America, not just the United States. In English, to say you are American means you are from the United States. But in Spanish, to say you are Americano means you could be from any of the 21 countries that span both continents. This distinction is important to Hispanic Americans, especially during National Hispanic Heritage Month. One of this year’s themes is “Todos Somos, Somos Uno: We Are All, We Are One,” which gets at the heart of the matter — Hispanic heritage is diverse but united. For Andy Guzman, public affairs specialist at the Kansas City District, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, National Hispanic Heritage Month is an opportunity to celebrate all Hispanic cultures and the language that unites them.
  • June

    Young and Promising: U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Kansas City District Employee Receives Industry 40 Under 40 Award

    The inland maritime profession is a unique and demanding one. Tackling the challenges associated with the career field requires determination and innovation. Every now and then, an individual comes along who, early in their career, makes an impact that is felt across the industry. U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Kansas City District employee Dane Morris is one of these individuals. This June, Morris was recognized with a 40 Under 40 Award at the 2023 Inland Marine Expo in Nashville, Tennessee, also known as IMX, for his outstanding achievements. IMX is an annual event where inland marine professionals collaborate to make maritime transportation more cost-effective, safe and environmentally friendly. Each year, the event recognizes a group of individuals under the age of 40 who have made significant contributions to the inland marine transportation industry and show promise in shaping its future. These award recipients are young professionals in a variety of career fields within the industry, including engineers, surveyors and professionals working on towboats, passenger vehicles or other commercial craft. This year, Morris was the only employee of the federal government to receive the honor.
  • May

    Employee Spotlight: Robin Nitcher

    Most U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ lake projects are within 50 miles of a major metropolitan area. Many of those who work for our lake and project offices have grown up in the community they work in. Sometimes, those who grew up in the project’s backyard are the best stewards for the it. One such steward is Robin Nitcher, administrative officer at Pomona Lake project. Nitcher grew up three miles from Pomona Lake located in Vassar, Kansas, and would frequently visit before she became an employee. In May 1986, she started as seasonal clerk before working her way to a permanent position. She worked her first stretch at Pomona Lake until 2008 and then transferred to Melvern Lake. She worked at Melvern Lake for two years before transferring to Perry Lake to work as an administrative officer.
  • March

    Life Lessons & Learning: A celebration of women in the Kansas City District, Part 3

    While the path to success has led each of these five women to different places within USACE, they have all had the benefit of accumulating important lessons throughout the course of their careers and their lives. The lessons vary among the women, but one thing they all have in common is the value these lessons bring to each new opportunity.
  • February

    Coming full circle: three Kansas City District employees awarded at 2023 BEYA Conference

    Every year the Black Engineer of the Year Award (BEYA) Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) Conference is held and honors professionals for their excellence in the STEM field. This year, the Kansas City District, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers celebrated three employees who were awarded at the conference, held on Feb. 9 to Feb. 11, 2023, in Washington, D.C. The winners from the Kansas City District were Beatrice Nwafor, LyTreese Lee and Arthur Saulsberry. Although all three winners are at different stages in their careers, being recognized and awarded at the 2023 BEYA STEM Conference was a full circle experience for each of them.
  • Kansas City District announces 2022 Ranger of the Year Award

    Ask a park ranger with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers what they like most about their job and you will likely get a response about being outdoors in nature and the freedom of not being stuck behind a desk every day. One of the more unique positions within USACE Kansas City District, park rangers, or Natural Resource Specialists as they are officially known, are responsible for developing wildlife conservation activities, managing environmental programs and supporting recreation through public safety, much of which is done in the great outdoors.
  • January

    Adaptive in the face of adversity: Matthew Scholten, Human Resource Assistant

    He’s the first person to greet you when you walk into the Civilian Personnel Advisory Center office, but there’s more than meets the eye with Matthew Scholten. While Scholten’s current title is Human Resources Assistant with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Kansas City District, he is also a retired Army staff sergeant and an adaptive athlete for the Kansas City Chiefs wheelchair football team. His time within the Army shaped how he would live the rest of his life and led to him finding his love for wheelchair football.