Category Archives: Locations

Galveston District Spotlight on Ron Wooten

If you were to ask Fort Worth native Ron Wooten what his favorite job has been throughout his career, you’d be surprised  to learn he’s sort of a jack-of-all-trades, having worked as an advanced placement high school teacher, research fisheries biologist, mentor, landscape and irrigation company owner and photojournalist.
If you were to ask Fort Worth native Ron Wooten what his favorite job has been throughout his career, you’d be surprised to learn he’s sort of a jack-of-all-trades, having worked as an advanced placement high school teacher, research fisheries biologist, mentor, landscape and irrigation company owner and photojournalist.

 

By USACE Galveston District Public Affairs Office

GALVESTON, Texas – If you were to ask Fort Worth native Ron Wooten what his favorite job has been throughout his career, you’d be surprised to learn he’s sort of a jack-of-all-trades, having worked as an advanced placement high school teacher, research fisheries biologist, mentor, landscape and irrigation company owner and photojournalist.

With a variety of skill sets under his belt, Wooten is learning to master an important role as a Department of the Army Intern and regulatory specialist in the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Galveston District’s Regulatory Branch, helping to protect the nation’s aquatic resources, while allowing reasonable development through fair, flexible and balanced permit decisions – a position he’s held since September 2013.

“I’ve grown to love coastal living and have really come to appreciate how important our coastal and wetland natural resources are to our planet,” said Wooten. “This is one of the few fields in which man’s activities that lead to wetland or watery habitat destruction or degradation can be evaluated for impacts and prevented or mitigated.”

The Department of the Army Intern Program is a vital source of new talent for the Army.

Participants enjoy a wide variety of education and training opportunities that introduce them to the Army mission, culture and business enterprises and develop their early career competencies, allowing rapid advancement to the journeyman level while building a foundation for future professional growth and promotion.

“Everything I am asked to do – I try to do to the best of my abilities,” said Wooten. “I’ve had the opportunity to partake in rotational assignments throughout various divisions here at the Corps, and I am currently working in the Regulatory Branch’s Compliance Division, conducting jurisdictional determinations, wetland delineations and evaluating unauthorized activities.”

The intern program provides a broad variety of projects, each offering their own unique challenges and opportunities for learning.

“I assisted the district’s Office of Counsel in processing Freedom of Information Act requests, in addition to evaluating several jurisdictional determination requests,” said Wooten. “If you work in waters of the United States or discharge fill material into a wetland area over which the Corps has jurisdiction, without first obtaining authorization from the Corps, you may be in violation of federal regulations. Violations can be very expensive to rectify and my result in civil penalties.”

Wooten notes it’s important to contact the Corps if you believe a permit is required to perform work in your area. Staff can assist the community in navigating through the application process.

Wooten’s earned multiple accolades for his work throughout his career, including having been named one of Galveston’s Top 50 Teachers, a commendation for service during the Deepwater Horizon oil spill, multiple photojournalism honors and awards of Excellence in Craft from the Texas Outdoor Writers Association.

While he’s only been with the Galveston District for nearly a year and a half, he says he’s grateful for the opportunity to work at the Corps and looks forward to learning and growing professionally. Wooten earned a Bachelor of Science in Wildlife and Fisheries in 1990 from Texas A&M and a master’s degree in Marine Resource Management in 2013 from Texas A&M University at Galveston.

He is a member of the Texas Outdoor Writer’s Association and plans to earn his Professional Wetland Scientist certification. In his spare time, Wooten enjoys photography, camping with his family, enjoying the outdoors and writing.

He is married to his wife, Trisha Wooten, and has two daughters, Allison and Emily.

For more news and information, visit www.swg.usace.army.mil. Find us on Facebook, www.facebook.com/GalvestonDistrict or follow us on Twitter, www.twitter.com/USACEgalveston.


After record crest, The Little Rock District begins process of lowering Millwood Lake

Millwood Lake
Millwood Lake

ASHDOWN, Ark. – The Army Corps of Engineers, Little Rock District began larger releases from Millwood Lake after flood waters downstream receded.  Millwood crested June 14 at 282.9 feet, a new pool of record elevation.  The Corps will continue to increase releases from Millwood, as channel capacity allows, until the lake elevation is back down to elevation 259 feet, the top of its conservation pool.

Currently, 38,500 cubic feet per second of captured flood water is being released from Millwood Lake.  This amount will change as the Red River conditions change in accordance with the Millwood Lake water control plan.

“We are coordinating closely with the Tulsa and Vicksburg districts to ensure that our releases don’t increase the risk of flooding downstream,” said Hydrologic Engineer Aaron Short. “Millwood Lake is doing its job of holding storm runoff until we can release it in a controlled manner once we have channel capacity downstream.”

Daily river information can be obtained at www.swl-wc.usace.army.mil or the Corps’ mobile App which can be found in mobile App stores by searching for USACE Little Rock.

Little Rock District news and recreation information can be found at www.about.me/usacelittlerock.