James P. Wilhoit, P. E., City of Renton
2019 Award Recipient
Nominated by the American Society of Civil Engineers
James P. Wilhoit, P.E., has been selected as the recipient of the 2019 Government Engineer of the Year Award in recognition of his many contributions in positions of great responsibility with the United States Navy Civil Engineer Corps, the Seattle School District, Valley Medical Center, Washington State Department of Transportation, and the City of Renton.
As a commissioned officer in the Navy Civil Engineer Corps, he oversaw construction of shore facilities in Puerto Rico, Japan, and Washington State. Upon release from the Navy, he served as resident engineer for the construction of two major elementary schools for the Seattle School District. In 1990, he became the Assistant Director of Plant Engineering for Valley Medical Center and supervised the maintenance and building systems operations workforce. In 1995, he became the Terminal Design Engineer for Washington State Ferries and managed the design of numerous ferry terminal projects throughout Puget Sound. In 1999, he became a Transportation Design Project Manager for the City of Renton, responsible for both design and construction of transportation projects for the City. He continued in this role until he retired in 2017.
Throughout his career with multiple government agencies, he has emphasized safety on construction projects and streamlined contracting procedures. He developed a reputation for keeping communications flowing to ensure that all stakeholders were informed and work stayed on schedule. His commitment to open communication also extended to keeping the public informed of project progress and impacts to them. He actively participates in section activities of the American Society of Civil Engineers including mentoring engineering students at Seattle University and the University of Washington.