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The official website of the State of Mississippi

Engineer Spotlight

The Board of Licensure would like to shine a spotlight on some of the talented engineers licensed to practice in the State of Mississippi
Licensees featured on this page are selected randomly.

November 2021 Engineer Spotlight:  Kathryn (Katie) B. Wimberly, P.E.

Kathryn B. Wimberly, P.E.

The Mississippi Board of Licensure for Professional Engineers and Surveyors would like to shine a spotlight on Professional Engineer Kathryn "Katie" B. Wimberly.  Katie is a graduate of the civil engineering program at Mississippi State University and surprisingly enough, engineering was not her first choice for a degree path.  Learn more about Katie and her journey to engineering in her responses below.  What we like most about Katie's path is that it tells us we can always choose to do something else; something new, something different and that its ok to do so.

Q1.  Why did you choose engineering or surveying?

My father owned a construction company growing up. When I couldn’t figure out what I wanted to do with my life after the first 4 years of college and bouncing between different degree paths, he set up an appointment with a family friend that worked at a local engineering firm in my hometown to discuss Civil Engineering with me. After the meeting, I did some research into the Civil Engineering major. I then decided to transfer to Mississippi State to pursue my new career path in the engineering world.

Q2.   How long have you been licensed in the State of Mississippi and do you also hold other state licenses?

I have been licensed in MS since 2011. I hold 5 other state licenses (AL, GA, FL, LA, TX).

Q3.  What advice would you give to your younger self (HS grad, college grad, etc)?

Always be willing to do something new and start over because your happiness is all up to you.

Q4.  What would you say to young people, who might be interested in STEM careers such as engineering or surveying?

Definitely consider it, the projects are everchanging and there is always something new to learn plus you are affecting the lives of more people than you will ever realize.

Q5.  Tell us about a recent project you worked on that exemplifies why you love being an engineer and / surveyor?  

I work on a lot of drainage related projects. Each one of them comes with a different set of problems and a search for new solutions. Helping find those solutions is extremely rewarding.

Q6.  Why is professional licensure important to you?

Professional licensure is important to me because it protects the people around us and the people that are affected by our projects. It gives confidence to our clients and ourselves that not only have we met the qualifications to become licensed but we have the work experience within our fields of discipline.



October 2021 Engineer Spotlight:  Harry D. Gong, Jr., P.E., F.NSPE 

Harry D. Gong, Jr., P.E., F.NSPE

The Mississippi Board of Licensure for Professional Engineers and Surveyors would like to shine a spotlight on local engineer Harry D. Gong, Jr. P.E., F.NSPE.   Harry serves as Engineering Coordinator for the Drinking Water State Revolving Loan Fund Program in the Bureau of Public Water Supply at the Mississippi State Department of Health and is a 2020 Fellow of the National Society of Professional Engineers.  He is active both locally and nationally in efforts to maintain and strengthen the integrity of the engineering profession and he serves as a regional vice president and is a past president of the Mississippi Engineering Society Jackson Chapter, the organization’s largest chapter. He is a graduate of Mississippi State University with a Bachelor of Science degree in Chemical Engineering from the Swalm School of Chemical Engineering.

We chose Harry because of his commitment to and professional focus on safe drinking water and for his work with cities, counties and water associations throughout Mississippi helping to improve their water distribution systems. The State Revolving Loan program provides funds to assist water utilities in financing construction projects that help them to maintain compliance with providing safe drinking water to the public.

Learn more about Harry in the responses below:

Q1.  Why did you choose engineering or surveying?

I chose engineering due to my loves of both chemistry and mathematics when I was in grade school. I was always a very good student in these subjects and took many of the advanced classes in High School and competed in many of the math and science competitions. When deciding what engineering degree to pursue, it was natural towards chemical engineering. As I was obtaining my engineering degree, I also found myself gravitating to the environmental direction of chemical engineering and taking few environmental courses as extra-curricular courses which certainly helped me in my professional career goals of becoming a licensed professional environmental engineer.

Q2.   How long have you been licensed in the State of Mississippi and do you also hold other state licenses?

I have been licensed in Mississippi as a professional engineer since June 11, 2007. Mississippi is currently the only state that I hold professional licensure in, but I am planning on applying for licensure in the neighboring state of Alabama in the near future, as I have been working with several licensed professional engineers that are licensed and practice in both states.

Q3.  What advice would you give to your younger self (HS grad, college grad, etc)?

The only advice I would likely give to my younger self is to get more involved in engineering organizations as early as possible. I unfortunately wasn’t nearly as involved as I am now professionally, but I am finding that many of the individuals in these organizations are excellent contacts and mentors that can certainly help create a professional network that will help throughout your engineering career.

Q4.  What would you say to young people, who might be interested in STEM careers such as engineering or surveying?

Engineering is an excellent career choice for any student that is interested in a STEM career. Not only does it help broaden your critical thinking skills, but it also solidifies and supports society for the health, safety, and welfare of the public.

Q5.  What professional organizations are you currently affiliated with?

National Society of Professional Engineers (Mississippi House Delegate 2019-2021, 2020 Class of NSPE Fellows, Candidate NSPE Treasurer 2021-2023)

Mississippi Engineering Society (Vice President Region 1 2017-2023; Wastewater Advisory Council Member)

Alabama/Mississippi Section of American Water Works Association (Secretary/Treasurer 2015-2018)

Q6.  Why is professional licensure important to you?

Professional Licensure of Engineers is extremely important to me as knowing that a Licensed Professional Engineer is a part of the design and decisions in society takes into account the health, safety, and welfare of the public. The National Society of Professional Engineers’ Creed says it best in that a licensed professional engineer pledges to give the utmost of performance, to participate in none but honest enterprise, and to place service before profit, the honor and standing of the profession before personal advantage, and the public welfare above all other considerations.



September 2021 Engineer Spotlight: Joseph Paige, P.E

Joseph Paige, P.E.

The Mississippi Board of Licensure for Professional Engineers and Surveyors would like to shine a spotlight on a newly licensed professional engineer.  Joseph Paige, P.E. is the Energy & Sustainability Coordinator for the Department of Planning, Design, & Construction Administration at Mississippi State University.  He earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Chemistry from Tougaloo College and a Master of Science degree in Engineering with emphasis in Environmental Engineering from Jackson State University.  We were encouraged by Joseph's advice to simply encourage each other to not give up.

Learn more about Joseph in the responses below:

Q1.  Why did you choose engineering or surveying?

After graduating with a Bachelor of Science degree in Chemistry, I then decided that I wanted to pursue a master’s degree engineering due to it being closely related to my previous degree and the broad opportunities in the field.

Q2.   How long have you been licensed in the State of Mississippi and do you also hold other state licenses?

I was recently licensed in Mississippi (May 2021). I do not have a license in any other state.

Q3.  What advice would you give to your younger self (HS grad, college grad, etc)?

Don’t give up and encourage others to do the same.

Q4.  What would you say to young people, who might be interested in STEM careers such as engineering or surveying?

My advice would be to take the challenge to never stop learning because the work that you do will leave an imprint on the world forever.

Q5.  Tell us about a recent project you worked on that exemplifies why you love being an engineer and / surveyor?  

Throughout my career I have learned that every engineering project is different. However, they are all fulfilling once you experience the completion of the project. This allows me as an engineer to understand why the process was worth it and finally feel a sense of achievement.

Q6.  Why is professional licensure important to you?

The accomplishment of earning my license was always a personal goal that I set for myself. For me it is an essential step that demonstrates your continued obligation to standards set by the profession.



August 2021 Engineer Spotlight: Cristiane Januzzi Queiroz Surbeck, P.E. PhD

Cristiane Queiroz Surbeck, P.E., Ph.D., F.EWRI, ENV SP

The Mississippi Board of Licensure for Professional Engineers and Surveyors would like to shine a spotlight on Dr. Cristiane Januzzi Queiroz Surbeck, PE.  Dr. Surbeck is the new chair of the Civil Engineering Department at The University of Mississippi.  She is a graduate of the University of Maryland where she earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Civil Engineering.  She also holds a Master of Science in Environmental Engineering as well as her doctorate in Environmental Engineering from the University of California, Irvine. 

She is an accomplished author having published a textbook and is part of the team completing research on climate change with the USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture.  We loved Dr. Surbeck's answers to our questions and felt her passion for teaching.  We are excited for the students who will benefit from her experience and knowledge at the University of Mississippi.  Rebels we think you've got a keeper in Dr. Surbeck.  We wish her many many years of success in preparing the next generation of engineers. 

Learn more about Dr. Surbeck below:

Q1.  Why did you choose engineering or surveying?

I wanted a very practical career, where positive results could be easily seen and experienced. After having a great chemistry teacher in high school, I decided to give engineering a try, even though up until then I wanted to be a journalist.

Q2.   How long have you been licensed in the State of Mississippi and do you also hold other state licenses?

I’ve been licensed in Mississippi since 2012 and in California since 2000.

Q3.  What advice would you give to your younger self (HS grad, college grad, etc)?

Take short, healthy breaks during the workday to cut down on stress. Most of the time, it’s ok not to work through lunch! Oh, and wear comfortable shoes.

Q4.  What would you say to young people, who might be interested in STEM careers such as engineering or surveying?

STEM careers can make a positive impact on the world. Of course, to be in those careers, being good at math and science is important. But to truly make a difference, you have to be ethical, a good communicator, and be knowledgeable on a wide variety of topics.

Q5.  Tell us about a recent project you worked on that exemplifies why you love being an engineer and / surveyor?  

There are so many projects… I’ll just say that educating future engineers has been a wonderful project. When I teach classes, I draw on my past experience at an engineering firm and on my research projects. So, when I teach a class that’s based on my past work of cleaning up contaminated sites, and the students’ end product is a report and presentation that would basically get them hired as environmental engineers, that’s an extremely gratifying feeling.

Texbook:

https://news.olemiss.edu/um-civil-engineering-professor-authors-textbook-for-environmental-engineers/

Research:

https://news.olemiss.edu/researchers-tackle-challenges-of-safe-drinking-water-in-mississippi/

https://news.olemiss.edu/um-middle-tennessee-researchers-get-grant-to-study-climate-change/

Q6.  Why is professional licensure important to you?

It shows to the public that our profession needs people with very specialized skills who have jumped through many hoops to gain those skills. And by going through this process, we are prepared to provide high-quality services.




July 2021 Engineer Spotlight: Jonathan Albert Kiser, PE

Jonathan A. Kiser, PE

The Mississippi Board of Licensure for Professional Engineers and Surveyors would like to shine a spotlight on Jonathan Albert Kiser.  Mr. Kiser is a graduate of Mississippi State University where he earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Civil Engineering.  He owns Kiser Traffic and Engineering, LLC located in Madison, MS and is a Professional Engineer, Professional Transportation Planner and Professional Traffic Operations Engineer.    Learn more about Jonathan below:

Q1. Why did you choose engineering or surveying?

"I was good at math, and have family that are Civil Engineers.  I was intrigued by the diversity of Civil and the job opportunities also."

Q2. How long have you been licensed in the State of Mississippi and do you also hold other state licenses?

Licensed in MS in 1998. Also hold PE license in Arizona, Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Nebraska and Colorado.

Q3. What advice would you give to your younger self (HS grad, college grad, etc)?

Work hard, take opportunities to move to new areas, foster your professional relationships, take time off to enjoy life outside of work.

Q4. What would you say to young people, who might be interested in STEM careers such as engineering or surveying? 

There is great opportunity for employment, good wages and job security in engineering.  Engineers will always be in demand.

Q5.  Tell us about a recent project you worked on that exemplifies why you love being an engineer and / surveyor?  

Recently completed a pedestrian study in Gulfport, where we identified many improvements to make the area safer for pedestrians, as there have been many fatal encounters with pedestrians and vehicles.  Identifying problems and solutions that help to improve safety/mobility for the public is meaningful to me.  It is fulfilling to work on projects that can impact people in a positive way, and to develop solutions to complex problems.

Q6. Why is professional licensure important to you?

Being a PE has allowed me to offer professional services throughout my 28 years of consulting.  I enjoy serving my clients, and my PE licenses allow me to offer professional services in these communities to bring positive change through the projects I complete.




June 2021 Engineer Spotlight: Laura Elizabeth James, P.E.

Laura Elizabeth James, PE

The Mississippi Board of Licensure for Professional Engineers and Surveyors would like to shine a spotlight on Laura Elizabeth James, PE.  Laura works for the Mississippi Department of Environmental Quality as the manager of the Air Program Development Branch in the Air Division which manages the Title V Fee Program, the Risk Management Program, and other various items.  She started at MDEQ in 2008 and  worked as an engineer in the Air Division, the Environmental Compliance & Enforcement Division and the Permits Division.  She is a graduate of Mississippi State University with a Bachelor of Science degree in Chemical Engineering and a Master of Science degree in Civil Engineering from ....... Thee I love ....... Jackson State University. 

There's so much to like about Laura's story but we were particularly drawn to the diversity of her education which included both a PWI and an HBCU.  We also like her advice to her younger self and agree that ... we should all look to find the good in each day!

Learn more about Laura below:

Q1. Why did you choose engineering or surveying?

As a freshman at Mississippi State University, I wasn’t sure what I wanted to do.  Ultimately, I chose chemical engineering because it was interesting, and there is a wide variety of career opportunities available after graduation.

Q2. How long have you been licensed in the State of Mississippi and do you also hold other state licenses?

I have been licensed in Mississippi since 2012.  I do not have a license in any other state.

Q3. What advice would you give to your younger self (HS grad, college grad, etc)?

Find the good in each day.

Q4. What would you say to young people, who might be interested in STEM careers such as engineering or surveying?

Don’t be afraid to try it.  It can seem intimidating, but you will be surrounded by people who want to see you grow.

Q.5 Tell us about a recent project that exemplifies why you chose engineering as a career.

I chose environmental engineering as a career because I found the work interesting, and it provided opportunities to help people.  More than just a project, the nature the work I do at MDEQ fits both parts.

Q6. Why is professional licensure important to you?

Earning my license as a professional engineer was an important professional goal that I set for myself.  It’s an important step in demonstrating my continued commitment to knowledge and sets a standard to work by.




May 2021 Engineer Spotlight: Lana Hartzog, P.E.

Lana Hartzog, PE

The Mississippi Board of Licensure for Professional Engineers and Surveyors would like to shine a spotlight on Lana Hartzog, PE.  Lana took a slightly different approach to engineering starting out at Belhaven College as a natural science and engineering dual degree student and finishing up at Mississippi State University.  In doing so, she was able to earn a Mathematics degree from Belhaven College (now Belhaven University) and a Civil Engineering degree from Mississippi State University.  We really felt the sincerity of Lana's response as to why professional licensure is important to her and we agree ten fold that its a huge responsibility.  We are however, pretty sure that she can handle it.

Learn more about Lana below:

Q1. Why did you choose engineering or surveying?

Growing up, I always knew that I wanted to be an engineer. I spent most summers working for my Dad’s heavy construction business where I was introduced to engineering.  I knew that I wanted a career that provided me with the opportunity to be creative and hands-on while improving the world we live in, and engineering provided just that.

Q2. How long have you been licensed in the State of Mississippi and do you also hold other state licenses?

I have been a licensed Professional Engineer in Mississippi for 8 1/2 years. I also hold Professional Engineering licenses in Alabama (since 2014) and Florida (since 2018).

Q3. What advice would you give to your younger self (HS grad, college grad, etc)?

My advice would be to not listen to people who may try to steer you away from engineering based on gender misconceptions or stereotypes. Remain confident in yourself and your abilities. Do not get intimidated by what appears to be complicated on the surface, as most complex things can be broken down into smaller, more manageable parts.

Q4. What would you say to young people, who might be interested in STEM careers such as engineering or surveying?

Pursuing a STEM career will allow you a wide variety of future opportunities, job flexibility, high initial compensation, personal satisfaction, and the ability to make positive social impacts. STEM careers play a key role in sustaining growth and stability of our economy and enable the next generation of innovators.

Q5.  Tell us about a recent project you worked on that exemplifies why you love being an engineer and / or surveyor.

Trying to pick one project that exemplifies why I love being an engineer is almost impossible. Being in the Traffic Engineering field, almost all of my projects improve the quality of life for the traveling public. Whether I am designing an advanced Intelligent Transportation System network using the latest technologies or re-timing old traffic signals, I truly feel a sense of accomplishment after each project.

Q6. Why is professional licensure important to you?

Professional licensure is very important to me because it holds engineers accountable for their work and the decisions they make. Our work impacts people’s lives and that is a huge responsibility.




April 2021 Engineer Spotlight: Jacob B. Forrester, P.E.

Jacob Forrester, P.E.

The Mississippi Board of Licensure for Professional Engineers and Surveyors would like to shine a spotlight on Jacob Bryan Forrester.  Jacob is the Assistant General Manager at Starkville Utilities.  He received both a Bachelor and Masters of Science degree in Civil Engineering from Mississippi State University in 2009 and 2014; respectively, and he is currently working on a doctorate in Public Policy and Administration which he hopes to complete in 2021.   

We like that Jacob stayed close to home to share his talents and appreciate his commitment to ensuring the best for his community.   Learn more about Jacob below:

Q1. Why did you choose engineering or surveying?

I grew up in a construction family where I had the opportunity to build and utilize surveying equipment.  Construction was always attractive to me because I was able to build things with my hands and see the progress, which gave me a sense of great satisfaction and accomplishment.  When beginning college, I thought about what career path would allow me to continue taking part in construction process and provide for great career opportunity.  Civil Engineering seemed to allow for a plethora of opportunities with many different specialized options, so I thought it would be the best engineering discipline to enter into to take advantage of those options.

Q2. How long have you been licensed in the State of Mississippi and do you also hold other state licenses?

I received my professional license in MS in 2014.  I’m only licensed in MS at this time.

Q3. What advice would you give to your younger self (HS grad, college grad, etc)?

I think that I would encourage myself to pursue a good technical and management career, in much the same manner that I have to date.  I believe that Engineering has provided for many opportunities for me, many of which I do not regret pursuing.  If there were one thing I’d want my younger self to focus more on, it would be to improve upon my understanding of foundational principles in engineering and to work to enhance my management skills more quickly.

Q4. What would you say to young people, who might be interested in STEM careers such as engineering or surveying?

I would (and have) encouraged younger students to pursue a STEM career in engineering and/or surveying.  Becoming grounded in the understanding of STEM related disciplines allows for many opportunities up to and beyond the traditional understanding of an engineering career.  Having the kind of skills that an engineering degree provides will allow for many opportunities in the future for these younger students, particularly as our economy transforms to the knowledge economy of tomorrow.  It’s definitely worth considering and pursuing if the student is inclined to work hard for a better future.      

Q5. Why is professional licensure important to you?

Professional licensure is extremely important to me.  I would say that many of my career, professional, and even personal opportunities have been enhanced through having a professional license.  When people realize you’re a professional engineer, they tend to give more weight and consideration to your opinion.  You’re considered to be knowledgeable, disciplined and a professional.  It may be the single-most important attainment in my career to date.




March 2021 Engineer Spotlight: Cara Brooks Wagner, P.E.

Cara Brooks Wagner, P.E.

The Mississippi Board of Licensure for Professional Engineers and Surveyors would like to shine a spotlight on Cara Brooks Wagner.  Cara received a Bachelor of Science degree in Civil Engineering from the University of South Alabama and works as a Civil Engineer with the Pickering Firm on the Mississippi Gulf coast.    

We like Cara's commitment to both her community and professional licensure.  How rewarding to have pride in the work you do and its benefit to your community.  Learn more about Cara below:

Q1. Why did you choose engineering or surveying?

It started with my Dad who is an Engineer.  I remember playing with his HP calculator when I was little and thinking he was the smartest person in the world.  As I got older I really enjoyed math and making a difference which are both a part of engineering, it was a natural fit.

Q2. How long have you been licensed in the State of Mississippi and do you also hold other state licenses?

Since 2015 in Mississippi and recently obtained a Louisiana license in 2019.

Q3. What would you say to young people, who might be interested in STEM careers such as engineering or surveying?

It can be so fun and exciting!  Get out there and find a few people to mentor.  See what really interests and excites you because there are so many options.

Q4.  Tell us about a recent project you worked on that exemplifies why you love being an engineer and / or surveyor. 

Howard Avenue in Biloxi.  The City wanted to revamp the old Vieux Marche area of Biloxi into a new and exciting area with a new brick road, sidewalks, and parking. During construction we found remnants of the old trolley line and brick road that used to be there in the early 1900’s which was really neat to see, especially because I love antiques and things from the past.  Since project completion it has brought new business and people to the area which is nice to see.  Proud to be a part of projects like this.

Q5. Why is professional licensure important to you?

I take what we do very seriously and appreciate that engineers are held to certain standards.  I think we need to continue to show our efforts towards meeting those standards on a consistent basis and licensure helps us do that.




February 2021 Engineer Spotlight: Charles Williams, Jr., P.E., PhD

Charles Williams, Jr. P.E., PhD

The Mississippi Board of Licensure for Professional Engineers and Surveyors would like to shine a spotlight on Charles Williams, Jr..  Dr. Williams is a graduate of the University of Mississippi, Mississippi State University, Belhaven University and the University of Alabama having several degrees as follows:

  • University of Mississippi, Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering, 1996
  • Mississippi State University, Masters of Science in Civil Engineering, 2000
  • Belhaven University, MBA , 2003
  • University of Alabama, PhD  Civil Engineering, 2013

He currently serves as the Director of Public Works and City Engineer for the City of Jackson.   We like

Dr.  Williams' commitment to both learning and the City of Jackson.  Like many, it was a teacher who first inspired him to look at a STEM career.

Learn more about his journey in engineering below:

Q1. Why did you choose engineering or surveying?

My High School Math teacher inspired me to look at a STEM program. I always had a fascination with bridge structures, so I chose Civil Engineering.

Q2. How long have you been licensed in the State of Mississippi and do you also hold other state licenses?

I have been licensed in the State of Mississippi since May 2007.

Q3. What would you say to young people, who might be interested in STEM careers such as engineering or surveying?

Don’t be afraid of a challenge or expanding your mind.  Too often we allow fear to hinder us from being successful.  Engineering is a challenging field, but it is also rewarding.

Q4.  Tell us about a recent project you worked on that exemplifies why you love being an engineer and / or surveyor. 

The City of Jackson is about to improve a much needed corridor in the heart of Jackson (Capitol Street). The  Capitol Street improvements are vital to the sustainability of the area. I am looking forward to the construction, and the completion of the project. This project is a game changer for the West Jackson community.

Q5. Why is professional licensure important to you?

It solidifies an oath each Professional Engineer commits to when passing the PE exam. It is the highest honor for an engineer to have PE placed behind their name. The practice of a PE should always reflect a duty to uphold the highest standards of practice to ensure the welfare and safety of the public is always the first priority.




January 2021 Engineer Spotlight: Colby Willis Kimmel, P.E.

Colby Willis Kimmel, P.E.

The Mississippi Board of Licensure for Professional Engineers and Surveyors would like to shine a spotlight on Catherine "Colby" Willis Kimmel.  Colby received a Bachelor of Science degree in Civil Engineering from the University of Mississippi in 2008 and she currently serves as an Assistant Roadway Design Division Engineer with the Mississippi Department of Transportation.  She is an active member of Women in Transportation Mississippi. 

We like Colby's commitment to both professional licensure and to providing safe and reliable roadway systems throughout the State of Mississippi.  More about Colby below:

Q1. Why did you choose engineering or surveying?

My father and late grandfather are both Civil Engineers so I grew up watching them.  I have always loved to solve problems and figure out how to make things “fit”.  Engineering, specifically Roadway Design, was just a natural choice for me.

Q2. How long have you been licensed in the State of Mississippi and do you also hold other state licenses?

I have been licensed in the State of Mississippi since May 2014.

Q3. What advice would you give to your younger self (HS grad, college grad, etc)?

Don’t be afraid to ask questions.  Learning is a lifelong process and you are right where you need to be. No one expects you to know everything today.  Each step you take is part of the process.

Q4. What would you say to young people, who might be interested in STEM careers such as engineering or surveying?

One of my father’s favorite quotes while I was growing up was, “Find a job you love, and you will never work a day in your life.”  While I didn’t always listen when I should have, I did listen to this.  Careers in STEM fields are reliable, yet challenging.  They allow us the opportunity to always continue learning, be creative,  and challenge ourselves and our minds.      

Q5. Why is professional licensure important to you?

Professional licensure is important because it is what holds us accountable.  It ensures that we are each honorable and competent in our field of work, thus providing the traveling public with a safe and reliable transportation system.  




December 2020 Engineer Spotlight: T. Wayne Black, P.E.

Wayne T. Black, P.E.

The Mississippi Board of Licensure for Professional Engineers and Surveyors would like to shine a light on Wayne Black.  Wayne received a Bachelor of Science degree in Civil Engineering from Mississippi State University in 2006 and was named to the Mississippi Business Journals Top 50 under 40 list in 2018.  He currently serves as the Transportation Team Leader at Garver, LLC in their Jackson, MS office.  

His community involvement has included work with Ducks Unlimited, which named him Volunteer of the Year and Area Chairman of the Year, as well as awarded him the State Chairman Award of Excellence. 

We agree with Wayne that life goes by way to fast and that you need to stop and enjoy it.  You can find more of our conversation with Wayne below:

Q1. Why did you choose engineering or surveying?

"I have always had a love for problem solving and an uncle that was a Petroleum Engineer. Since me and chemistry didn’t get along, Civil Engineering was a natural calling."

Q2. How long have you been licensed in the State of Mississippi and do you also hold other state licenses?

"I have been licensed since 2010. I’m also licensed in the State of Georgia."

Q3. What advice would you give to your younger self (HS grad, college grad, etc)?

"Slow down and enjoy it. Life goes by too fast."

Q4. What would you say to young people, who might be interested in STEM careers such as engineering or surveying?

"I would say that they are considering a career that is meaningful, fulfilling and so important that it can literally change the world."

Q5. Why is professional licensure important to you?

"It’s important to me like it should be important to everyone.  It’s a measure of competence and experience to ensure that qualified individuals are designing safe and reliable components of the public’s everyday life. It also ensures these same qualified individuals continue their professional development throughout their career by requiring participation in continuing education."




November 2020 Engineer Spotlight: Maggie Wei, P.E.

Maggie Wei, P.E.

The Mississippi Board of Licensure for Professional Engineers and Surveyors would like to shine a light on Honghong (Maggie) Wei.  Maggie received a Bachelor of Science degree in Physics from Sichuan University in China and a Master of Science degree in Civil and Environmental Engineering from West Virginia University.  Maggie is currently serving as a Senior Project Engineer with Waggoner Engineering in their Madison, Mississippi office.

We love the pride Maggie has in being a licensed Professional Engineer and echo her sentiments as to why professional licensure is important.  Read on for more of our conversation with Maggie.

Q1.  Why did you choose engineering or surveying?

"I chose engineering as my career because engineers solve problems in our society. As a female engineer, I am proud of myself for being a problem solver for our community."                        

Q2.  How long have you been licensed in the State of Mississippi and do you also hold other state licenses?

"I’ve been licensed in the State of Mississippi since 2015 and I hold licensees in the State of Ohio (2014) and West Virginia (2013)."

Q3.  What advice would you give to your younger self (HS grad, college grad, etc)?

"Be brave and smart in choosing a career which you will love and enjoy."   

Q4.  What would you say to young people, who might be interested in STEM careers such as engineering or surveying?

"Be passionate about your career because that is part of your life. Becoming an engineer is one of my best decisions in my life."

Q5.  Why is professional licensure important to you?

"The professional licensure is important not just because it authorizes an engineer to provide professional services to the public, but also demonstrates an engineer’s adherence to a higher level of standards. It also indicates an engineer’s commitment to ethical practice with the health and safety of the public foremost in your consideration."




October 2020 Engineer Spotlight: Matthew Hosey, P.E.

Matthew Hosey photograph

The Mississippi Board of Licensure for Professional Engineers and Surveyors would like to shine a light on Matthew Hosey.  Matthew received a Bachelor of Science degree in Civil Engineering from the University of Mississippi.  Currently, he serves as a Project Manager with the Jackson County Board of Supervisors.

We like Matthews encouragement to his high school self.  "Study more!  Its ok to be a nerd."  More from our conversation with Matthew below:

Q1. Why did you choose engineering or surveying?

"I really liked maps and wanted to go into Cartography at first, but then decided Civil Engineering would be better because I would still get to create and read maps as well as do a lot of other really interesting things too.  Also, I had a good amount of time between High School and going to college, during which I worked in various Construction fields.  After working in construction, I thought I could bring my hands-on experience to the design side of projects and improve the outcome of projects."

Q2. How long have you been licensed in the State of Mississippi and do you also hold other state licenses? 

"I have been licensed in Mississippi for 3.5 years and I also hold a Louisiana license."

Q3. What advice would you give to your younger self (HS grad, college grad, etc)?  

"Stop trying to be cool, and study more!  It’s ok to be a nerd." 

Q4. What would you say to young people, who might be interested in STEM careers such as engineering or surveying? 

"Don’t let the complicated math scare you.  Anyone can learn it if you take it piece by piece and don’t get overwhelmed.  I had to take remedial math in Elementary School, but then excelled at it in High School and College.  Go for it and be Passionate about your studies!  And learn to be interested in all things." 

Q5. Why is professional licensure important to you? 

"I know this is repeating what others have said before me, but it is true, Licensure holds us accountable for our actions.  We touch countless lives every day when the public uses what we’ve designed, and without accountability, the world would not be as safe.  Licensure is our lively hood, we must protect the public in order to protect our licensure and not let greed or power be our ruling factor."




September 2020 Engineer Spotlight: L. Quinn Braboy, P.E.

L. Quinn Braboy, P.E.

The Mississippi Board of Licensure for Professional Engineers and Surveyors would like to shine a light on L. Quinn Braboy.  Quinn received a Bachelor of Science degree in Civil and Environmental Engineering from Mississippi State University and a Master of Science degree in Civil and Environmental Engineering from Jackson State University.  Currently, she serves as a Senior Civil Engineer with the City of Jackson.  

More on our conversation with Quinn below:

Q1.  Why did you choose engineering or surveying?

"I have always been interested in science and math even at a very young age. I would build various things with my Legos and K’Nex toys, which fueled my interest in Civil engineering. In addition, I have an Uncle who is a licensed Civil Engineer that I looked up to and he has served as a great mentor over the years."

Q2. How long have you been licensed in the State of Mississippi and do you also hold other state licenses?

"I have been licensed in Mississippi since 2017 and also licensed in the state of Alabama."

Q3. What advice would you give to your younger self (HS grad, college grad, etc)?

"My advice to myself would be don’t dim my light for others to feel comfortable, do it scared and my silence serves no one."

Q4. What would you say to young people, who might be interested in STEM careers such as engineering or surveying?

"I would tell young people to ask others in STEM for advice or to shadow them, look for opportunities and if they aren't available create them, and don't be afraid to ask, most likely others are wondering the same things."

Lastly, tell us why being a licensed Professional Engineer is important to you and the State of Mississippi.

"It serves as a personal accomplishment and is important to maintain expertise in your field. In addition, it is great to network with other Professional engineers that you meet via different boards and organizations."




August 2020 Engineer Spotlight: Jessica Headrick-Dilley, P.E.

Jessica Headrick-Dilley, P.E.

The Mississippi Board of Licensure for Professional Engineers and Surveyors would like to shine a light on Jessica Headrick-Dilley.  Jessica has a Bachelors of Science degree in Civil Engineering and a Masters of Science degree in Environmental Engineering from the University of Mississippi.  She currently serves as an Assistant State Planning Engineer with the Mississippi Department of Transportation. 

Check out some of our conversation with Jessica below:

Q1. Why did you choose engineering?

"I wanted a meaningful career in the field of math that would also give me diverse career options, but I also wanted a career where I could work to tangibly improve our environment (both built and non built)."

Q2. How long have you been licensed in the State of Mississippi and do you also hold other state licenses?

"I have been licensed in the State of Mississippi for 5 years."

Q3. What advice would you give to your younger self (HS grad, college grad, etc)? 

"There is no better day than today - so be present in everything you do you may not get a redo later. - still working on this myself."

Q4. What would you say to young people, particularly girls and children of color who might be interested in STEM careers such as engineering or surveying? 

"I never knew engineering was a “man’s” field until I was told so - I just knew I liked problem solving and math. With that said - the only person you need to prove anything too is yourself. The old saying “you can do anything you put your mind to” is so true - Everything requires hard work and studying but if it’s something you enjoy - it’s all worth it. Find out what you're passionate about and don’t be afraid to explore it."

Lastly, tell us why being a licensed Professional Engineer is important to you and the State of Mississippi.

"It is important because it holds engineers accountable for their work and design. A lot of what engineers do, particularly in the civil world, impacts the safety and welfare of the public. I wouldn't feel safe traveling with my family across bridges or a roadway in which there was no way to ensure they were designed to the correct (or any) code or standard."