Biographical Narrative by James Patchett
Prior to joining CDF in the summer of 2000, Tom had spent the previous decade working for the Northeastern Illinois Planning Commission (NIPC) as a civil/ hydrologist and Senior Engineer in the Natural Resources Department. Prior to his tenure at NIPC, Tom had been employed by the US Army Corps of Engineers, and as a private sector consultant. Over the years, Tom developed a strong reputation throughout the region as a highly proficient hydrologist and one of the leading proponents of sustainable water resource management practices. While at NIPC, Tom co-authored a manual on stormwater best management practices and conducted routine seminars that, at the time, were utilized as one of the primary stormwater educational resources around. This tool was used to train many of the region’s civil engineers, landscape architects, architects, planners, and builders on the benefits and techniques associated with sustainable water resource management strategies.
Tom’s prowess as a hydrologist, and his commitment to sustainable water management measures were well known to me, my CDF colleagues, and virtually everyone throughout the region, and many throughout the country. It had also taken longer than I had hoped to identify a civil engineer that could assume a leadership role in our firm; one that combined a strong hydrological background and experience, with an appreciation of the many liabilities associated with conventional stormwater engineering practices.
After numerous discussions over a period of several months, Tom decided to join CDF as a Principal partner. At NIPC, Tom spent much of his time and energy trying to educate and convince practitioners and developers that sustainable design and development was both economically practical and environmentally effective. CDF offered Tom the opportunity to lead by example, and his participation in our collaborative efforts has made a significant contribution to the expanded technical skills of the firm. Tom’s proficiency in sophisticated hydrological modeling, coupled with his practical experience in the design and implementation of a broad variety of “green” rainwater infrastructure measures has been invaluable to CDF, our clients, and colleagues. Tom also brings an energy level and work discipline that is an inspiration to us all. Like many of his CDF colleagues, Tom continues to participate in research and routinely conducts educational outreach through his involvement as a writer and speaker.
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