Three Public Works/Sanitation and Environment staff members were named part of the American Academy of Environmental Engineers and Scientists’ “40 Under 40” awardees.
The AAEES’ “40 Under 40” program recognizes talented individuals who have, either personally or as part of a team, been responsible for helping to advance the fields of environmental science or environmental engineering in a demonstrable way within the last 12 months. Winners were chosen by a panel of past recipients who weigh equally business successes and civic and philanthropic activities.
Congratulations go to Jesus Rocha, Jeremy Nguyen and Michelle Barton.
ABOUT THE AWARDEES:
As an Environmental Supervisor, Michelle leads the City’s Biodiversity Program. Michelle’s expertise also helped launch the City’s Healthy Soils Program in 2020. She developed both programs in a very short amount of time to be global examples of how large cities can be leaders and take action to address the dual crises of biodiversity loss and climate change. Michelle earned her bachelor’s degree in biology from UCLA and her master’s degree in biology from Cal State Long Beach.
Jeremy first entered the field of environmental sciences as a laboratory technician at a private contract lab in November 2011. There he met incredible analysts and project managers who fostered his experience and passion for the environmental sciences. In 2014 he was hired by the City as a laboratory technician, and in 2015 he was promoted to his current role as a chemist for the Environmental Monitoring Division (EMD).
As a Sr. Chemist in the Environmental Monitoring Division, Jesus has led the laboratory in completing scientific analyses that are critical to ensuring the City meets its obligation in guaranteeing public safety for its constituents. Within the last year, he has sought ways to better help meet these objectives by exploring and implementing emerging technologies that both improve data quality and reduce harmful chemical usage. Throughout his career, Jesus has strived to accomplish two things: exercise his scientific knowledge to promote science in an environmentally conscious way, and to give back to the community that helped inspire him.