Kevin Conner, RLA, ASLA
Unit Manager, Urban Design & Planning
Carter & Burgess
Being a San Antonio native, I’m well aware of the connections between a community and the water that often was the raison d’etre for its founding (just look at San Antonio’s river!). I’m in the fortunate position to professionally and personally engage in river and watershed projects, and I find them to be wonderfully complex. To examine our built environment from the watershed perspective is to reconnect ourselves to the underlying land and water that supports us. And that reconnection extends to several planes: quantifiable engineering aspects, comfortable recreation purposes, emotion-level unity with a place, and economic development advantages, just to name a few. After 18 years of practice, I feel that I can discern some of the overriding community values, just by observing what a community does with their rivers and streams.

Randy Alexander, CWB
Senior Project Manager
Carter & Burgess
Until very recently, I never lived more than a mile or so from a major river. I started off near the Neches in deep east Texas, moved to the Brazos in central Texas, then on to a five year stint on the Snake River in Idaho, before returning back to the Brazos to attend Texas A&M University. Even while earning a degree in wildlife biology I managed to spend most of my time on the Brazos, Navasota or Little River (admittedly not always in academic pursuits). The amazing thing is that even with all of this “river time,” it took me several years of professional work around streams and rivers before I realized the deep, largely unappreciated, and sometimes dysfunctional connection that our society has to rivers. As my career evolved, the focus of my work has become gauging, permitting, and mitigating impacts to streams and rivers. I could not have foreseen how rewarding, or admittedly challenging, this type of work is. I look forward to seeing this blog develop and to share and hear about the exciting work that lies ahead for all of us involved in urban watersheds.

Jacque Thomas, P.E.
Senior Project Manager
Carter & Burgess
I’m not your typical engineer. I have always been fascinated with the natural environment and specifically anything to do with water. I even started my college career wanting to be a marine biologist. But my logical brain took over and I ended up with a degree in Maritime Engineering. I was lucky though, early in my engineering training, to have the opportunity to work on multidisciplinary teams planning water resources projects. This experience naturally progressed to designing and building such projects. I have spent the last 15 years learning how to balance competing goals and design for success in the utilization of our precious water resources. Whether it’s keeping the water from doing harm with flooding, or providing quality water for human and ecological consumption, our work touches every part of the environment. For me, it is very gratifying work to weave these multiple, often competing uses, into approachable and usable environments.


Jim Chlup
Manager, Business Development &
Urban Design & Planning
Carter & Burgess


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