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US Army Corps of Engineers
Southwestern Division Website

Army Corps of Engineers water management engineer earns Black Engineer of the Year honor

Published Feb. 15, 2015
Lt. Gen. Thomas P. Bostick, Commanding General of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers,  presents a certificate of achievement to Dr. Michael Sterling for his selection as Black Engineer of the Year for Professional Achievement (Government Category).

Lt. Gen. Thomas P. Bostick, Commanding General of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, presents a certificate of achievement to Dr. Michael Sterling for his selection as Black Engineer of the Year for Professional Achievement (Government Category).

Dr. Michael C. Sterling, Black Engineer of the Year for Special Achievement (Government Category)

Dr. Michael C. Sterling, Black Engineer of the Year for Special Achievement (Government Category)

By Martie Cenkci

Southwestern Division Public Affairs

Michael C. Sterling, PhD, the chief of the Water Management and Infrastructure Branch, Southwestern Division, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers in Dallas, has been named the 2015 Black Engineer of the Year for Professional Achievement (Government Category) during the 29th Annual Black Engineer of the Year Awards (BEYA) ceremony in Washington D.C.

U.S. Black Engineer & Information Technology magazine conducted the annual honors during its BEYA Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) Global Competitiveness Conference Feb. 5-7.

“This award is acknowledgement of what the Army Corps of Engineers has known all along,” said Brig. Gen. David C. Hill, SWD commander.  “Dr. Sterling is an absolutely stellar example of professional engineering expertise applied for the benefit of our nation.  In the 12 years that he has been an integral part of the Army Corps of Engineers, he has made innumerable contributions in the science, engineering, and public service sectors.  He is a tremendous asset to our organization and to this nation, and a role model for all to emulate.”   

A subject matter expert in water resources engineering, Dr. Sterling is the Hydrology and Hydraulics Practice Lead for the Southwestern Division. He supports planning, designing, and operations of Corps water resource projects, including 74 reservoirs and 760 miles of local protection projects.  Dr. Sterling has also worked with several Federal and State resource agencies to address floodplain management, navigation channel design, coastal sediment management, and reservoir operations.  During his career, he has published more than 30 peer reviewed journal articles and conference papers. 

"I owe much of my success to those teachers and other role models who encouraged me to discover and develop my God-given talents," Dr. Sterling said. "Inspired by these outstanding people and role models, I know that I have an opportunity to help inspire the next generation.  I am very appreciative of this recognition of my career accomplishments."

The BEYA Conference honors outstanding leaders in the STEM fields and provides opportunities for professional development, networking and recruiting.  The BEYA is one of the most prestigious and competitive honors in science, engineering and technology management.

In the BEYA twenty-nine year history, thousands of America's most creative and innovative professionals have been nominated for this nationally recognized honor, with only a few hundred achieving the  distinction of being a Black Engineer of the Year honoree.

Dr. Sterling has worked for the Army Corps of Engineers since 2003. Previous positions he has held with the Corps include chief of the Hydrology and Hydraulics Branch for the Galveston District and principal investigator with the Engineering Research and Development Center in Vicksburg, Miss.

A 1994 graduate of the University of Oklahoma, Dr. Sterling received a Bachelor of Science degree in chemical engineering. He also received a Master of Science degree in 1998 from Texas A&M University in agricultural engineering. Five years later, Dr. Sterling earned his Ph.D. at Texas A&M University in civil engineering. He is a Registered Professional Engineer in the states of Texas and Mississippi. 


Release no. 15-006