“Building Strong” Relationships, ACOE. St Lucie River/Indian River Lagoon

The 2015 ACOE Jacksonville District leaders. (ACOE website)
The 2015 ACOE Jacksonville District leaders. (L to R top down) Lt. Col. Jennifer A. Renyolds; Col. Jason A. Kirk; Lt. Col. Mark R. Himes. (ACOE website)

This past Thursday, at 5:30 PM in Jacksonville, Florida, was the farewell celebration for Col. Alan Dodd who has served the ACOE Jacksonville District the past three years. During his tenure he faced almost immediately the “Lost Sumer” of 2013. Something very positive that was born of that disaster was that communication between the South Florida Water Management District and the Army Corp of Engineers improved. This is a tremendous achievement. As all War College graduates know, you cannot win a war with out good communication.

Col Dodd and Lt Col Greco are now retired I believe. Or determining their futures. Thank you. The Jacksonville office of the US ACOE will now be led by Col. Jason A. Kirk along with two Lt. Cols. Mark R. Himes, and Jennifer A. Renyolds. Lt Col Renyolds will be our main point of contact as she will oversee South Florida and be stationed here in West Palm Beach. Many have already met her. She is very popular.

I wish I had been at the celebration. I wish I had been a fly on the wall. Over a couple of beers, I wonder what the conversations were like:

Army War College….Engineering….Bosnia….Kosovo….Iraq….Afghanistan….Fort Hood…West Point…West Palm Beach….Jacksonville…St Lucie River/Indian River Lagoon…Calooshahatchee…Everglades Restoration…Lake O…Agriculture…the EAA…U.S. Sugar…the Florida Legislature…

That says it all doesn’t it?

I encourage everyone to reach out and introduce yourself to this new leadership team.  Yes, there is a conundrum in that now these leaders are in charge of “opening the gates” to allow the polluted waters of Lake Okeechobee to ravage our St Lucie River/Indian River Lagoon. They have a job to do. To listen to Congress and the Dept of the Interior. Safety. Flood Control. More recently, the Environment. A job whose history, responsibility, and direction predates us. As is so often the case in this life, they are charged with managing and undoing what was done by our forefathers in an era where “man over nature” reigned supreme.

Can the same agency that historically destroyed our waterways through the building of drainage canals help to undo this mess? I think so. The Kissimmee River restoration is a testament to that.

This does not come easily or quickly but it can come. And through our passion we can win the hearts of these modern-day warriors, a step at a time…a year at a time. A disaster at a time.

Yes they have outstanding resumes and wide experiences but in the end, they are human like everybody else. I am certain they want a better future for their children. This is the key.

Their  mission is stated as follows:

Jacksonville District provides quality planning, engineering, construction and operations products and services to meet the needs of the Armed Forces and the nation.
Our missions include five broad areas:
• Water resources
• Environment
• Infrastructure
• Homeland security
• Warfighting
Within these mission areas, our programs and projects:
• Ensure navigable harbors and channels
• Provide flood damage reduction
• Restore ecosystems
• Protect wetlands
• Stabilize shorelines
• Provide recreational opportunities
• Respond to natural disasters and in emergency situations
• Provide technical services to other local, state, federal and international agencies on a reimbursable basis

Welcome ACOE Warriors! Yes, the River Warriors and the River Movement of Martin and St Lucie Counties truly welcome you! We are relying on you to protect us and our river the best you can.


BIOGRAPHIES, click on name: (http://www.saj.usace.army.mil/About/Leadership.aspx)

ACOE Jacksonville website:(http://www.saj.usace.army.mil/)

The 2015 ACOE Jacksonville District leaders.
The 2015 ACOE Jacksonville District leaders.





4 thoughts on ““Building Strong” Relationships, ACOE. St Lucie River/Indian River Lagoon

  1. Rentention ponds all over Florida serve no purpose. The truth is people were just stealing land for fill on construction projects. What they are doing is funneling all the toxins into an acid rich–oxygen poor environment where they are preserved as they go DIRECTLY into the aquifer. I have seen pictures of when the first wells were drilled into the aquifer and the pressure was so high the water shot 50 foot in the air. I think they need to represureize the aquifer by building above ground retention ponds, They could use same system of an underground concrete wall they are using on the Lake O dike project. This would funnel they water down. Pond being above ground would create the pressure.

  2. Good ideas , I was fascinated by the info ! Does anyone know where my business might be able to grab a sample a form example to use ?

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