Terry Kerger, PE
Associate – MONROVIA
Congratulations to Terry Kerger on his 15 years with Civiltec Engineering!
Prior to joining Civiltec, Terry was one of ten Principal owners of Alderman Swift & Lewis (ASL) Engineers and later an engineering manager when ASL was sold to Tetra Tech Engineers. Although he had decades of water engineering expertise, Terry felt constrained by management responsibilities at Tetra Tech and felt that he was not doing the type of work that he enjoyed.
In the early 2000s, Terry had more than one long discussion with David Byrum. Terry joined the Civiltec team in 2004 as an Associate and Principal Engineer with the goal of focusing more on engineering and less on management. He has continually achieved this goal over the last 15 years and remains passionate about water engineering projects today.
Looking back at his long and accomplished career, we wanted to give Terry a chance to reflect on his time with Civiltec.
What was it like becoming an Associate of the firm?
After leaving ASL Engineers, I no longer wanted to be involved in the ownership of a business. Here at Civiltec, I am an Associate and I am proud of the title, but it does not affect what I do day-to-day. I have been in this business for over 50 years; I am happy to work on engineering projects and just being a part of the Civiltec team and a mentor to our eager staff.
What is a favorite skill that you have learned?
The thing I enjoy most is working on the hydraulic processes of water systems, pipelines, and pump stations. When you start, you have a concept of how it is supposed to work. You have to understand each part of the process to make sure all the components are specified correctly, so that everything fits and the whole process functions properly. Pumps, pump curves, and variable speed pump analysis are a challenge for some people. It takes a lot of experience to understand how those systems operate.
What has been your favorite project and why?
All of my projects are my favorites. The larger water facility projects that the Civiltec team has completed are the most rewarding. One of Civiltec’s larger projects was the water treatment plant for the City of Alhambra. The Civiltec design team pulled all the different components together, did the research, and added technical knowledge to make sure the plant met the water quality treatment goals and Department of Water Resources operating permit requirements.
The design of the potable water treatment plant was a bit challenging because it was the largest production capacity water treatment plant I had undertaken at the time. This potable water treatment plant removes volatile organic chemicals and nitrate contamination from 10 million gallons of water per day. This water treatment plant is one of the largest production capacity water treatment plant that Civiltec has designed.
Since joining Civiltec, how has your life changed? Have your passions evolved?
Little changes here and there. My commute to work is a little longer than before. After I got married and had kids, I gave up my Porsche. But now, since the kids are all grown up, last year I treated myself and bought my favorite car – an agate grey 911 Carrera S Porsche!
I’m older now so it’s hard to say that my passions have changed. I enjoy coming to the office, working with the people here, interacting with clients, and doing the engineering work. That’s where my passion lies, and I am able to achieve this at Civiltec. From the beginning of my engineering carrier, I have wanted to make projects happen in the field and see my projects get built.
Do you have any hobbies?
I have competed with free flight model airplanes at a World Championship level for a long time. Every two years, the United States sends a team of three people to a competition in some country somewhere around the world. I’ve gone to five World Championships in Europe, South America, and the US. I started building and flying model airplanes when I was a boy and just grew into it. I have not won the World Champion title (yet!), but my closest friend has been the world champion twice!
How do you want to help Civiltec grow in the future? Is there anything you want Civiltec to achieve?
I am here to lend my experience in any way I can to help Civiltec win more high-profile projects develop our business profile and grow our staff expertise to the highest level possible. I joined the Civiltec team because I enjoy the culture of a 30- to 50-person office. As Civiltec grows, we will find more people with the special skills to help us succeed in the high-profile Civil Engineering profession. I hope my expertise will enable Civiltec to continue to successfully serve our clients’ needs and build personally rewarding careers for our team.
I would love for Civiltec to expand our expertise and land more high-profile projects such as big reservoir projects, big pump station projects, large diameter pipeline projects, Water, Waste Water treatment projects, and more.