Thursday, July 7, 2016

The county has a new engineer. Here is why you should care.

Posted By on Thu, Jul 7, 2016 at 6:32 AM

click to enlarge Jennifer Irvine - EL PASO COUNTY
  • El Paso County
  • Jennifer Irvine

Police and firefighters get all the glory. The county engineer? Yeah, not so much.

Chances are you don't even know who the county engineer is or what she does, let alone that her work keeps you safe every day.

In short, the county engineer ensures the safety of infrastructure like stormwater systems, utilities, and roads. It may not be sexy stuff, but it sure is important.

André Brackin was the El Paso County Engineer for 20 years until he retired in May. 

At the time of his retirement, then-El Paso County Commissioner Chair Amy Lathen noted in a press release that Brackin was, “instrumental in the execution of initiatives that have greatly benefitted the citizens of El Paso County, including: the development of 1041 permit process, the adoption of stormwater drainage and utilities placement specifications and requirements and the establishment of countywide transportation impact assessments for new development.” 

Jennifer Irvine, who joined the county as Engineering Services Manager and Project Management Supervisor in 2000, was appointed to serve as interim county engineer at that point. This week, she was given the job permanently, becoming the first female El Paso County Engineer. 

“She has shown excellent engineering, leadership and mentoring skills,” County Administrator Henry Yankowski said at a county meeting. “She has excelled in financial, budget and program management, and she has been a leader in regional collaboration. The big bonus to the County is the institutional knowledge she brings to the position. She knows not only what has been done in the past, but the why."

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