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U.S. Army Corps of Engineers
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District’s first female deputy engineer finalist for Service to America Award

Published May 15, 2018

 ST. PAUL, Minn. – U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, St. Paul District employee and St. Paul resident, Judy DesHarnais, is a finalist for the 2018 nonprofit, nonpartisan Partnership for Public Service, Samuel J. Heyman Service to America Medal.

The annual Service to America award, also known as the "Oscars" of government service, is the nation’s premier award dedicated to honoring America’s best in government. It recognizes exceptional federal workers with a mission to make our government more effective by breaking down barriers, overcoming huge challenges and getting results.

DesHarnais was nominated for being a critical leader in planning, resourcing and building public works engineering projects during a three-decade career with the Corps. She has directed major flood-protection projects that have saved lives and prevented more than a billion dollars in property damage.

She joined the St. Paul District in 1985 as one of the district’s first female engineers. She continued to make history in 2001 when she was promoted to be the district’s – and Corps’ – first female Deputy District Engineer for Programs and Project Management. She continues to serve in that role today.

The nearly 600 U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, St. Paul District, employees working at more than 40 sites in five upper-Midwest states serve the American public in the areas of environmental enhancement, navigation, flood damage reduction, water and wetlands regulation, recreation sites and disaster response. Through the Corps’ Fiscal Year 2015 $100 million budget, nearly 1,600 non-Corps jobs were added to the regional economy as well as $155 million to the national economy. For more information, see

Release no. 18-036