Young Professionals

Events & Committees: Young Professionals Group

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Young Professionals Group Women in Hydro Professional Group Calendar Events Archive

NWHA Young Hydro Professionals Group

The Young Hydro Professionals Group (YHPG) is focused on assisting newer hydro industry members (regardless of age) with professional development and understanding of what the industry offers. Meetings provide networking opportunities to socialize with other industry members. Meetings can be breakfasts, dinner, tours or other forums organized around topics of interest to the attendees. Industry "elders" (experienced industry members) "mentor" by sharing their experiences and offering sage advice on a variety of topics. There are now two groups formed and others may be developed in the future:

Seattle/Bellevue, WA Young Hydro Professionals Group
Portland, OR Young Hydro Professionals Group

NWHA is supportive of forming other groups in other locales throughout our service territory: Alaska, British Columbia, Idaho, Montana, Oregon, Washington and northern California.

Young Professionals BreakfastPortland, Oregon Group

The first meeting was held June 28 in Portland as a breakfast meeting. 

For events, contact NWHA Board Members:

Frances Brinkman
Black and Veatch
(503) 443-6251

Marc Whitehead
(503) 423-3895

Seattle/Bellevue, Washington Group

The Seattle/Bellevue Group began meeting January 30, 2012. It continues to meet quarterly to meet the needs of its participants.

For future events, contact Shane Richards or Eli Wilson at the numbers below:Young Professionals Group

Bruce Meaker, Group Mentor
(425) 327-1967

Shane Richards, P.E.
Puget Sound Energy
(425) 462-3014

Eli Wilson, P.E.
EES Consulting, Inc.
(425) 889-2700 ext 209

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Past Events:

Seattle/Bellevue Group
April 2, 2015
King County's Brightwater Treatment Plant

The Seattle Young Hydro Professionals Group was hosted by King County at its Brightwater Treatment Plant on April 2nd. An overview of the plant's operation was provided. The plant has been in operation since 2011. The tour identified the many pumps, pipes, and processes required to treat the sewage, drawing similarities between it and a hydro installation. This plant has no odor, which was a priority outcome for the plant.

The next meeting will be in the Seattle metro area, date to be determined.

Brightwater Treatment Plant       Brightwater Treatment Plant Tour

Brightwater Treatment Plant Tour

Seattle/Bellevue Group
September 11, 2014
Seattle Steam Company

On Thursday, September 11, the Seattle chapter of NWHA’s Young Hydro Professionals Group took a tour of the Seattle Steam Company’s facilities in downtown Seattle. Eight people attended for a very successful event.

Seattle Steam Company is a privately-owned utility that provides reliable and sustainable heat to approximately 200 buildings in Seattle's Central Business District and First Hill neighborhoods. Seattle Steam's mission is to deliver a reliable cost-effective and efficient source of heat that benefits its customers, the environment and the Seattle community.

Brandon Oyer, Director of Engineering, was a great tour guide. He superbly explained the economic, engineering, environmental, and historical aspects of the Seattle Steam Plant.

The group learned several interesting facts about the plant and its operations:

First, the plant generates 220 MW of thermal power, but considers producing electricity a bi-product.

Second, sand is used to spontaneously combust wood chips without producing a flame, so if you looked inside the stove all you would see is sparks.

Third, the wood is a green energy non-fossil fuel and collected from demolished buildings around the city.

Fourth, if it wasn’t for an existing tunnel we walked through built in the early 1900’s, the new biomass facility couldn’t have been built.

Finally, the plant entered the market after the Great Seattle Fire as a way to reduce the amount of boiler rooms or fire sources in downtown.

The Seattle Steam Company now distributes the majority of its energy by steam to downtown Seattle for uses like heating hotel rooms, laundry, and sterilizing equipment in hospitals. As a matter of fact, after the tour the group enjoyed the finest work of the Steam Plant via a delicious selection of beer and food at the Pike Brewing Company which uses Seattle steam in their brewing production process.

The after-tour get-together celebrated a late congratulations to co-chair Eli Wilson's Labor Day wedding and bid goodbye to member Adrian Strain who was moving back to Iowa.

For more information about the Steam Plant visit their website at:

More festivities will continue after the holidays!

Steam Company Tour        Steam Company Tour

Steam Company Tour       Steam Company Tour

Steam Company Tour       Steam Company Tour

Steam Company Tour

Portland Group
May 16, 2014
Tour of the Downstream Fish Passage System at PGE's River Mill Dam and Floating Collector at North Fork Dam

The Portland Young Hydro Professionals toured of the downstream fish passage system at PGE's River Mill Dam as well as the floating collector in construction at the North Fork Dam.  These are both on the Clackamas River near Estacada.  Click Here to view PG&E Clackamas River Flickr album.

The tour was scheduled on Friday May 16th at 1 pm.  There was a disc golf course post-tour activity.  

Seattle/Bellevue Group
May 15, 2014
Tour of Hiram M. Chittenden Locks

The Young Hydro Professionals enjoyed a tour of the Army Corps of Engineers Ballard Locks on May 15th.  Click Here for more information about the Hiram M. Chittenden Locks known locally as the Ballard Locks.

Twelve of the group were able to join the tour and enjoyed dinner following the tour.

Joint Meeting Event

There was a joint breakfast meeting of the two groups with other interested persons invited, at the 2014 NWHA Annual Conference at the Marriott Hotel in Seattle Washington, February 19th, 2014.

2013 Tour of Canyon Hydro Plants in
Deming and Sumas, WA

The Young Hydro Professionals Group enjoyed a successful tour of the Canyon Hydro plants in Deming and Sumas, WA. Bret Bauer of Canyon led the tour of their high head turbine manufacturing facilities and explained the manufacturing process and of equipment Canyon ships internationally. Eleven of the YHPG members were able to participate in the tour. Everyone came away impressed with the level of technical sophistication they use to machine their turbines of all types.

Young Hydro Professionals
Young Hydro Professionals
Young Hydro Professionals
Young Hydro Professionals
Young Hydro Professionals
Young Hydro Professionals

Inauguration Meeting
January 30, 2012
Pagliacci Pizza Bellevue, WA
Topic: Things I Broke When I Was Young and Survived
Bruce Meaker, Stan Schweising, and Kim deRubertis gathered with 7 invitees to share stories of the big mistakes that happened to them when they were first starting out.


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