Whatcom County engineer receives state award

Joe Rutan, Whatcom County engineer and assistant public works director, was named the Washington State Association of County Engineers (WSACE) urban engineer of the year for 2011 by Jay Weber, executive director of the state’s County Road Administration Board.

Rutan was also installed as WSACE’s 2011-2012 president.

“Throughout Joe’s eight years as Whatcom County’s engineer, as well as during his tenure before that, with the city of Bellingham, he has always shown untiring and loyal service, as well as demonstrating the kind of leadership skills that make him stand out among his peers. This recognition is well deserved,” county executive Pete Kremen said in a press release.

Rutan, who was nominated for the award by Whatcom County Public Works director Frank M. Abart, received the award at WSACE’s annual conference banquet on June 8 in Winthrop.

Rutan was nominated for his outstanding leadership and coordination with staff, program supervision, funding and his professional expertise, according to a county press release.

“It is a great honor to have our professional staff recognized,” Abart said in the release.” We impact citizens every day in a variety of ways and our employees do a great job in making those impacts positive.”

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