The Bureau of Reclamation has selected Richard LaFond, P.E., as the director of its Technical Service Center. The center is located in Denver, Colo., and provides innovative solutions to water and power resource issues.
LaFond will be responsible for leading the organization and coordinating Reclamation’s technical capabilities.
“Dick has almost 40 years of experience as a civil engineer working and leading a variety of projects throughout Reclamation,” Chief Engineer David Raff said. “His experience and knowledge from working, being a team leader and then manager on a broad range of water resource projects will be a great asset to the Technical Service Center and Reclamation.”
LaFond joined Reclamation in 1979 and worked in the Spillways and Outlet Works Section and completed a construction rotation assignment at Island Park Dam in Idaho. After returning to the East Coast for a couple of years, he rejoined Reclamation in 1983 at the Engineering and Research Center, now known as the TSC. He then worked on several pumping plants before transitioning to the Structural Analysis Group where he provided project management and technical support services for dam safety projects. In 2004, LaFond became manager of the Plant Structures Group, where he managed a group of employees who worked on pumping plants, powerplants, water treatment facilities and other structures.
He became the TSC Civil Engineering Division chief in 2009, where he has provided leadership over a diverse set of civil engineering services including the design and analysis of concrete dams, spillways and outlet works, water conveyance systems, roads and bridges, powerplants, pumping plants, and water and wastewater treatment facilities; as well as cost estimating and construction management services and materials engineering and research.
LaFond is a registered professional engineer in Colorado and holds a bachelor of science in civil engineering from the University of Connecticut and a master of science in civil engineering from the University of Colorado. He was awarded the Superior Service Award in 2008.
Reclamation is a federal agency under the U.S. Department of the Interior and is the largest wholesale water supplier and second largest producer of hydroelectric power in the U.S.