Sarwenaj Ashraf, or Sarvi Ashraf as she is known in the Fort Worth District, has won the United States Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) Dam Safety Professional of the year award.
Although her home station is in the Fort Worth District, Ashraf is the USACE Dam Safety Program Manager.
The Dam Safety Program ensures that the dams deliver their intended benefits while reducing risks to people, property and the environment through continuous assessment, communication and management. USACE dams and levees are a part of America’s landscape and provide critical benefits to the communities around them.
“Dam and Levee safety is essentially making sure that the dams and levees are performing as designed and maintained,” Ashraf explained.
For the Corps owned dams, there is a very large and robust program that covers a wide range of areas. Ashraf’s work at the USACE HQ level is focused on dams that are located on Army installations. Currently USACE as a whole operates and maintains approximately 700 dams and 14,100 miles of levees across the United States.
“We want to make sure we are following the proper procedures and making sure we are making risk informed decision to keep them maintained. We want to focus on reducing flood risks,” Ashraf said.
Dams and levees are constructed to provide flood risk management, water supply, hydropower, fish and wildlife conservation, recreation areas, and environmental stewardship.
Ashraf has spent her whole career assigned to the Fort Worth District, and she holds both a Bachelors and Masters of Science in Civil Engineering from the University of the Texas, Arlington. She started as a Department of the Army Intern in the geotechnical section.
“I love being able to help our customers. We are able to identify and solve problems for them, saving them money and reducing risks,” Ashraf commented. “It’s always important to enjoy your work.”