Home > Awards

District engineer wins national career achievement award

District engineer wins national career achievement award

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE), Memphis District proudly announces the Black Engineer of the Year Award (BEYA) STEM Conference has selected Operations Division Chief, Andrea L. Williams, to receive a 2024 Career Achievement Award in recognition of her significant achievements as an engineer for a U.S. Government organization.

Williams is the first woman in district history to serve in the operations division chief role. Her oversight of several district assets, including the Dredge Hurley, the Motor Vessel Mississippi, three pumping plants, and several revetment units, demonstrates her exceptional leadership and dedication to the USACE mission.

Williams holds an extensive list of career achievements, with a few of her more impressive feats including coordinating key contracts as part of her deployment to Kandahar, Afghanistan, directing a multi-agency national response to the 2022 Mississippi River Low Water event, and playing a central role in the 2011 Mississippi River Flood recovery efforts.

Beyond her professional successes, Williams’ active involvement in community outreach programs like the Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) initiative demonstrates her dedication to making a positive impact on the lives of others.

In a letter announcing Williams’ big win, Tyrone D. Taborn, CEO and Publisher of U.S. Black Engineering and Information Technology magazine, wrote, “Ms. Williams’ achievements in STEM stood out among the hundreds of nominations that were evaluated by the BEYA Selection Panel.”

Her passion for helping future generations is evident through her regular career fair participation and volunteering for a Memphis city school program called “Our Children, Our Future.”

Additionally, Williams’ commitment to empowering others is apparent in developing and conducting workshops to support pregnant teens staying in school.

Williams graduated from Tennessee State University in 1994 with a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering and the Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University with a master’s degree in civil engineering.

Her Memphis District career began in 2000 as a Construction Branch civil engineer. Still, it was just a short time before Williams was promoted to a supervisory civil engineer role as Water Data Section chief in 2002.

Then, in 2011, Williams advanced to the Operations Division at Ensley Engineer Yard to serve as the Plant Section chief, where she worked for eight years before joining the Galveston District as an operations project manager.

While at the Galveston District, Williams seized the opportunity to work in Afghanistan, deploying in January 2020 to support Operation Freedom’s Sentinel as a Technical Services Branch chief.

After two years overseas and a 22-year career with USACE, Williams returned to the Memphis District, temporarily serving as Operations Division chief for six months before becoming the permanent chief in April 2022.

Williams’ award presentation is scheduled for February 17, 2024, at the BEYA Awards Ceremony at the Baltimore Convention Center in Maryland. A livestream of the event is accessible at https://www.youtube.com/live/vuMF4ZHrAuw.