May 12, 2020
Hero Highlights: Our own Project Engineer, Chris Dommert
By: Leslee Oliver
Our firm is so appreciative of the many heroes who are fighting COVID-19 on the front lines. As we continue to feature our infrastructure division this week during #TGInfrastructureWeek, we wanted to take a moment to celebrate one of our own heroes, Chris Dommert. Chris is a project engineer in our water/wastewater division and has been with our firm since 2017. He’s an 8-year Veteran as Air Force Civil Engineering Officer and has extensive leadership and team-building experience, a keen analytical mind, and the ability to leverage team strengths to complete tasks under high pressure.
Chris is currently on active duty acting as a liaison between the National Guard and state agencies such as Virginia Department of Emergency Management (VDEM) and Virginia Department of Health (VDH) within VDEM Region 5 along the east coast. He is participating in planning conferences related to alternate care facilities and testing sites, and his role is to help identify shortfalls that might be a good fit for National Guard support and coordinate the request for support.
He is doing all this while continuing to work for our firm AND juggle family life. I was able to briefly catch up with Chris and hear more details about the work he’s been doing, including getting his perspective on the biggest community needs he’s seeing.
Q. What does your typical day look like while on assignment while also balancing work at Timmons Group and family life?
My typical day has not changed too much since starting this assignment. I am working from home and participating in multiple phone conferences per day. My challenges are no different than anyone who is currently working remotely with restless kids at home.
Q. We’re hearing and seeing a lot of negativity. Can you share something you’ve witnessed that is positive?
There are a lot of positive things happening and it is rewarding to see how agencies come together behind the scenes to provide support and relief. While this is an unprecedented situation, everyone is working very hard to be efficient and responsive and improve processes for future scenarios.
Q. What’s one thing that has surprised you during this experience?
I am continually surprised to see how so many people effectively meet and communicate across so many agencies and all at various locations. Whenever technical difficulties arise, there is always a contingency plan and we are able to adapt and carry on.
Q. How many people are you working with?
It’s hard to say how many people I am working with, since we are all working remotely. I routinely interact with about 10 people, but it seems that there are several hundred people involved from the various agencies and hospital planning groups that I participate in throughout the week.
Q. What do you think is the biggest need for those who are on the front lines fighting this virus?
From my perspective, it appears the biggest need remains personal protective equipment (PPE) such as gloves and facemasks.
It was so great catching up with Chris! I know I can speak for all of us at Timmons Group by saying that we are lucky to work alongside him at the firm and truly appreciate his service to our community during these unprecendented times.