Erickson Honored with Moffatt-Nichol Award

The American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) is pleased to announce Karyn Erickson, P.E., M.E. as the recipient of this year's John G. Moffatt-Frank E. Nichol Harbor and Coastal Engineering Award. Established in 1977, and endowed by the engineering firm Moffatt & Nichol, the award recognizes new ideas and concepts that can be efficiently implemented to expand the engineering or construction techniques available for harbor and coastal projects. The Harbor and Coastal Engineering award is given annually to honor John G. Moffatt and Frank E. Nichol, the firms' co-founders.

Erickson is the first woman to receive this prestigious award and she is honored for her outstanding contributions to the advancement and practice of coastal engineering. Her efforts in engineering project design, integration of environmental concepts, creative funding structures and sustained professional leadership have successfully enhanced the harbor and coastal engineering fields.

Erickson is a graduate of the University of Florida Institute of Technology, where she received a B.S. in Environmental Engineering and an M.E. in Coastal and Hydrolic Engineering. She has been an active member of ASCE for more than 20 years, serving on several COPRI committees, including the Coastal Zone Management Committee. Erickson also serves as the COPRI representative on the ASCE Civil Engineering Certification Board, was a member of the Board of Directors of the American Shore and Beach Preservation Association (ASBPA) and served as secretary of the Association of Coastal Engineers Board of Directors. She is registered as a Professional Civil Engineer in five states.

In pursuit of her wide-range coastal engineering interests Erickson established her own firm, Erickson Consulting Engineers, where she serves as president. She has also been involved in various coastal engineering projects, including one where Erickson received the unique opportunity to work with a Caribbean country with an emerging economy that was wholly dependent on beaches and waters. The Leeward Beach Nourishment and Channel Relocation Project realigned an inlet channel and nourished the beaches to the south. Presently, Erickson continues to work with the local government in developing environmental standards and a permitting process for coastal development projects.

Erickson also served as the principle engineer on the Mason Inlet Relocation Project. She was responsible for the planning, design, permitting, engineering and construction of the project which closed a North Carolina inlet and reopened it 3000 ft. to the north. This project represented what Erickson believes to be one of the most highly challenging and valuable contributions to coastal engineering in the area of tidal inlets.

In 1995, Erickson was the principle engineer on the Town of Palm Beach Restoration Project. The highly successful project placed nearly one million yards of sand and 11 groins along a one-mile highly eroded shoreline. It represented the first project to develop and permit a "maintenance protocol" based on project performance as measured by a detailed, monitoring program that specified (and permitted) actions based on observations of sand redistribution at a time when groins were held in disfavor by the state.

The award was presented at the 2005 Solutions to Coastal Disasters Conference, held May 8-11 in Charleston, SC.