Board Member Spotlight 2016 Feb-Mar

As part of our new 2015/16 Board member appreciation program we are showcasing a board member in our bimonthly Board Member Spotlight.  Our board member spotlight recognizes board members of outstanding contributions to the profession and our local communities. For any questions regarding the program please contact the Past President at PastPresident@ymf-oc.org.

For the February and March spotlight we would like to introduce...

Gidti Ludesirishoti, P.E. ENV SP

We asked him to state his name, company and position in ASCE:

"Gidti Edward Ludesirishoti, PE, ENV SP

Cucamonga Valley Water District (as of March)

HDR (Previous) 

ASCE OC Branch Social Committee

Past President of ASCE OC YMF (2014)"

We also asked him a few questions about the following:

School/Education/Background

School:

Where did you grow up?

I was born in Monterey Park, California and spent part of my childhood there before to Fontana, California until I graduated HS. 

What made you want to become an engineer?

Ever since I was a child I was always fascinated with how the world worked. I grew up watching my father fixing things around the house and loved being able to solve problems. When I asked my father what the name of the job is where you invent things, he told me that’s an “engineer”; that’s when I knew. What led me to civil engineering was my desire to contribute to society and benefit the most people. However, my decision to focus on water/wastewater was my intro to civil engineering professor, Frank Janger. He said a phrase to our class that I still remember, “A doctor can save one life at a time, an engineer can save a village.” 

What college(s) did you attend? Can you list your degrees, any honors, and involvement in engineering organizations during school?

I went to California State Polytechnic University Pomona, commonly known as Cal Poly Pomona. I was on the board with the Society of Environmental Engineers, a small club in our college focused on the Civil-Environmental engineers. A few years after my graduation, the club changed its name and became a student chapter of the California Water Environment Association (CWEA). 

Work & Professional Life

Describe your responsibilities and some significant projects.

I am a Project Engineer in HDR’s SoCal Water Business Group. Two of my recent significant projects include:

1. IRWD’s Recycled Water Salt Management Plan

Irvine Ranch Water District (IRWD) sought to understand the sources of their recycled water salinity and how to reduce salts in the future. As part of the Recycled Water Salt Management Plan (RWSMP) I developed a Salt Balance Model. The model performs a flow and mass balance at 4 stages (Source Water, Sewer Collection, Wastewater Treatment, Non-Potable Distribution) to simulate the historical and future salt loading in their system. I presented the model at the 30th Annual WateReuse Symposium in Seattle, WA.

2. CVWD’s Design-Build Services to Upgrade the Arthur H. Bridge Water Treatment Plant (CVWD)

Cucamonga Valley Water District (CVWD) lost functionality of their Arthur H. Bridge Water Treatment Plant (AHBWTP) due to storms damaging the intake structure and equipment failure of the existing treatment processes. The project replaced the intake structure and treatment process with a more robust and remote operated system. I led mechanical/process design while coordinating structural, electrical, and civil disciplines. I am proud to say this project won the 2015 Project of the Year for ASCE San Bernardino Riverside and Water Treatment Project of the year for ASCE’s LA Section (2015) and Region 9 (2016). I also co-presented this project at the Design Build Institute of America’s (DBIA) 2014 Design-Build for Water Wastewater Conference in San Jose, CA

Non-Project work responsibilities

I am the Vice Chair of HDR’s Integrated Delivery Practice Group and a committee member on our Irvine Young Professionals Group which sets up internal events for young professionals in our Irvine office.

What is your favorite part about being a Civil Engineer?

I get to solve problems on a daily basis and work alongside likeminded professionals. 

What skills do you find most valuable to focus on in your career?

Effective Communication. I could create long list of different skills but they all boil down to the same concept. The only way to solve a problem is to understand it and to convey the solution to others. We work in a collaborative industry and it’s a vital skill that everyone needs from an intern to a CEO or Director.

What drew you to your specific career path? If you could start your career differently, what would you do differently?

My desire to work in a field that improves the quality life in a meaningful way and solve problems drew me to this field.

If I could go back in time to school I would have attended more conferences as a student. I was already involved with engineering clubs and participated in networking opportunities. However, there were many other opportunities that I did not explore.

Describe a situation that was a great learning experience for you?

It’s hard to pick one, I’ve had so many. Unfortunately, many great learning experiences are through mistakes or arguments that should not have happened. If you’d like to hear about them I’d be happy to discuss in private. J

ASCE

How/Why did you get involved? Why did you choose to stay?

Like many people I was brought in by a friend and stayed because of the great people I met. The more I put in the more I got out of my involvement. I can never repay ASCE for the education, professional skills, personal development, and all the relationships I’ve built. Being an engineer does not define everything that I am, but what I am has been shaped by my experiences. Many of those experiences I can thank ASCE.

How has ASCE impacted your work and/or what is your favorite benefit of your involvement?

My professional development through ASCE is pretty obvious to me. My communication skills and comfort networking enabled me to be more confident at work and to communicate more effectively. These skills are what helped me get involved with projects I wanted as well as effectively coordinate with contractors, subs, and my own team members.

What has been your favorite ASCE event since you got involved?

WRYMC is by far the most educational and fun event I’ve been involved in. We just got back from Alaska and it was another great experience. Look out for my article on the event in the March newsletter!

As far as local events, I would have to say my favorite has been the Ronald McDonald House Feast from the Heart event. The first two years we held this event I was the head chef and prepared traditional Thai Dishes for families staying at the Children’s Hospital of Orange County’s (CHOC) Ronald McDonald House. Sharing a home cooked meal with the families brought a small bit of joy during a rough time. I was thrilled to pass the baton to my successors for the event which I continue to participate as a sous chef. 

Personal Life

Favorite sport?

Anyone who knows me can easily say snowboarding is my favorite sport. One of my favorite parts of SoCal is the fact I can live near a beach and still go snowboarding for just a morning.

Hobbies and Interests outside of Engineering?

I’m a big fan of craft beer and bourbon. Feel free to chat with me about those or try some with me! I also love travel when I can get to it; I’d like to hit all 7 continents. I still need 3 more, I hope to check off 2 in the next 2-3 years. Also food, I love food. 

If you missed the last Board Member Spotlight, Rémi Candaele , you can click here to read his article.

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