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2012 Young Engineer of the Year: Catherine G. Farrell, PE

Catherine Golata Farrell, PE is an assistant project manager in the transportation department at Michael Baker Jr., Inc. in Horsham, PA.  Since joining Baker in 2002, Cathy has worked on roadway, highway and trail jobs for PennDOT, townships and community groups in the Philadelphia area.  Cathy’s hands-on approach and attention to detail helps her take projects from conception through implementation, touching all project phases from proposal to preliminary engineering and final design, to bid preparation and post design services.  As a professional engineer in Pennsylvania, Cathy has extensive design experience in horizontal and vertical geometry, safety studies, ADA compliant curb ramps, guide rail design, contour/grading and the preparation of construction and right of way plans.  She has also led coordination efforts with utilities and public agencies, including interaction with community stakeholders at public meetings.

Cathy thrives in seeing her projects materialize from ideas to tangible improvements that benefit society.   Cathy’s most recent accomplishment was serving as the assistant project manager for the Gustine Lake Interchange project, a $20.8 million dollar American Recovery and Reinvestment Act project that  that replaced 4 structurally deficient bridges and the removal and replacement of a 5th bridge with a signaled intersection in an urban interchange.    During construction, Cathy was the point of contact for all project-related questions.  Cathy also recently acted as the roadway task manager on the award-winning Route 202 Section 701 Parkway project, where she designed a 1.8 mile long limited access roadway on new alignment recently constructed in suburban Montgomery County (2010 ASHE Project of the Year award and 2010 MASITE Project of the Year – Honorable Mention). 

Although she grew up outside of Baltimore/D.C. and spent her high school years in the Chicagoland area, she returned to the east coast to earn her Bachelors of Science in Civil Engineering and Masters of Science in Civil Engineering from Villanova University in 2003 and 2006 respectively.   Since then, she has been active in the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) volunteering as the Membership Secretary and the PDH Committee Chair.  She is also involved in the ASCE Younger Member Forum having served as President, Vice President, Social Chair and Past President.  Cathy even participates in the Engineers Week planning committee by spearheading the Young Engineer Social.    In addition, she is a member of the American Society of Highway Engineers and the Engineers Club of Philadelphia. 

Her involvement does not stop with professional society organizations.  At Michael Baker Jr., Inc. she led the effort to create a corporate wide mentoring program.  To help boost employee morale, she’s planned social and volunteering events for the Horsham and Philadelphia offices.  Cathy is an active member with the Pi Beta Phi Sorority Alumni Club and served as the President of their House Corporation for six years.  Additionally, she volunteers with St. Alphonsus Parish’s Aids to Friends Ministry where she prepares meals for the elderly.

Cathy resides in Dresher, PA with her husband Tim (also a civil engineer) and their son, Dean.  In her free time she enjoys cooking, exercising, skiing, and spending time with friends and family.