At Hoyle Tanner, we are fortunate to have expert leaders and innovative thinkers in every discipline. It is a big part of why clients trust us again and again, and hire us for various project services. Something we are extremely grateful for – and do not underestimate – is the value each team member brings. That includes our very special group of female engineers who focus on wastewater, stormwater, and drinking water quality services.
Affectionately known as the “WOW” Team within our hallways, Hoyle Tanner’s Women of Wastewater span generations and experience levels, with some just starting their careers and others making headlines with their years of expertise.
But it’s not just their experience levels that make them a group; it’s actually their willingness to teach and learn from one another that make this group of women truly an impressive team. It’s also a part of the reason some engineers join our firm – the chance to work and learn amongst brilliant women in a very male-dominated industry.
Below, these women feature a sentiment about why they love being part of WOW.
Kirstin DiPietro Worden, PE is a sought-out leader in our Vermont space, and a respected mentor to her WOW teammates. Her almost-30-years of experience include environmental engineering for water and wastewater treatment facilities, pump stations, sanitary collection systems, small-scale sewage disposal systems, and water transmission projects. Her experience also includes stormwater projects including design of stormwater treatment practices, development of flow restoration plans, and integrated water quality planning projects.
“As an idealistic teenager, I was drawn to environmental engineering with a passion to clean up the planet’s water systems. Almost 30 years later, I am living this dream through the work I do with Hoyle Tanner designing wastewater and stormwater treatment systems to keep our lakes and streams clean. When I started my career with Hoyle Tanner 26 years ago, there were few women in the field of engineering, and fewer still in the company, and mentorship with women was non-existent. Over the years as our representation in both the company and broader water resources sector has increased, there is a real sense of sorority and support for each other. As women, we face the double-edged sword of wanting a career and/or a family, and often have to prioritize one over the other. What has made the difference for me at Hoyle Tanner is that they worked with me wherever I was on that journey, giving me the support and commitment to find a balance and achieve both goals. As a senior female technical engineer at Hoyle Tanner, I am now in the position to provide that mentorship to younger female engineers, and I am looking forward to helping them navigate their way on their journey. I feel so fortunate to work with such a great group of women engineers at Hoyle Tanner – we truly have a sisterhood here!”
Heidi Marshall, PE has over three decades of experience, having developed strong municipal, industrial and site development design and construction skills. As a full-service engineer focusing on northern New England communities, her background includes transportation, environmental, stormwater, wastewater and recreational facilities. She has been instrumental in Vermont’s wastewater treatment and management – including an Industrial Pretreatment Program (IPP) as well as a first-of-its-kind, integrated water quality management plan.
“When I talk to people in and around the City [of Burlington, Vermont], and they find out that I am working on improving the water quality of Lake Champlain, they are all starved for information and want facts and ways that they can immediately help…. Yes, beaches close when there is an issue, which makes everyone sad and angry, but just telling someone that picking up pet waste can make a difference, seems to make them listen intently. Having people that care about what [the WOW team does] is really fun.”
Marisa DiBiaso, PE has over 20 years of experience with an eclectic project background. She has done transportation engineering projects for municipal and state agencies, park rehabilitation projects, civil/site design layouts and drainage work. She has done engineering for stormwater design and has also been a lead engineer for the civil/site design of our wastewater projects.
“Some of my favorite projects have been large infrastructure and utility projects which include design and construction of stormwater, wastewater and water systems. Recently, I’ve been collaborating with our wastewater process team on wastewater treatment facility projects, and I really enjoy working with so many smart, team-oriented women to solve design challenges on complicated projects. In an industry where women engineers tend to be the minority, I’m really proud to belong to a company culture that breaks the mold.”
Mallory Rakowski graduated from Northern Arizona University in May 2022 with a bachelor’s in environmental engineering. She worked with the City of Flagstaff’s Water Services division as a Water Resources Technician where she gained experience and knowledge of drinking water and wastewater systems.
“As a young woman in the industry, although times have changed, there are still instances where I am the only, or one of few women in the room. Seeing women in leadership positions and knowing that I would be surrounded by a strong presence of amazing women is a big part of what drew me to Hoyle Tanner. Being able to see yourself in someone and having the opportunity to be mentored by other women on engineering work and career goals/paths has been invaluable. I am so grateful for every woman who makes up this team and for the opportunity to learn from them.”
Amy DeCola, EIT is an environmental engineer with Hoyle Tanner. She earned her Bachelor of Science in Environmental Engineering and her Master of Science in Civil and Environmental Engineering from the University of Vermont. Amy was a co-author of “Microbiomes for sustainable biomanufacturing” in the Current Opinion in Microbiology journal. Her recent blog, “Repurposing Waste to Produce Energy while Mitigating Climate Change,” focuses on her thesis work and presentations at local conferences.
“I am so grateful to have the opportunity to learn from a group of intelligent, dependable women in engineering. Feeling supported by my team and being part of a diverse group is part of what makes Hoyle Tanner so special.”
Laura Clements, PE, LEED®AP has extensive experience in heavy/civil infrastructure and institutional building construction. She has completed scope and schedule development, constructability reviews, logistics planning and estimates during preconstruction and bidding. She has recently worked on construction of the South Woodstock, Vermont wastewater treatment facility (WWTF), the Brighton, Vermont WWTF, and serves as the construction administrator for all stormwater projects.
“I think the WOW team is pretty special at Hoyle Tanner! I particularly like wastewater plants because although I’m a civil engineer and enjoy site, civil and structural projects, I get really jazzed up about wastewater treatment equipment, mechanical/electrical/plumbing (MEP) equipment and process controls. I’m learning something new with each project, and enjoy working with our subconsultants that do the design in these areas.”
Paula Boyle is an accomplished environmental engineer and project management professional specializing in wastewater collection and treatment, water resources and permitting projects. Her expertise lies in serving municipalities, state entities and regional agencies. With an impressive track record, Paula has emerged as a prominent figure in developing and administrating federal, state and local IPPs across New England.
“My career in wastewater began working as an intern for another firm cleaning wastewater sampling equipment and other field-related services. Since then I’ve had the privilege of working alongside excellent engineers in a variety of wastewater disciplines, including my favorite – Industrial Pretreatment. All these years later, industrial inspections are still exciting to me, whether a brewery, a paper mill, a tofu manufacturing plant or a Pepsi bottler, I am able to see and stay at the forefront of continued emerging technologies to deal with pollution prevention.”
Samantha Lewis, EIT is an environmental engineer in our New England Municipal Engineering team. She earned her Bachelor of Science and Master of Science in Civil Engineering from Western New England University. She has been working in our environmental and civil/site services, building her experience around water, wastewater, industrial pretreatment, stormwater and construction administration services.
“I graduated with three other women in my major and only one female professor, so working with a larger group of female engineers is a great new experience for me. The group is very supportive and the mentorship I have received from the women at Hoyle Tanner is exceptional.”
Emily Belisle, EIT works with our New England Municipal Engineering team on a variety of land development and environmental projects. She is experienced in design, data collection, data processing using AutoCAD, Civil 3D, HydroCAD and ArcGIS. Her background includes asset management studies, quantity cost estimation, construction administration and oversight, linear utility design and site design.
“The company culture is what drew me to Hoyle Tanner. It always feels like your managers and supervisors really do care about you and your work experience. I’ve learned a lot from my project teams and am excited to continue doing so.”
Lori Lehnen, PE brings nearly 30 years of potable water and wastewater engineering experience to the table, catering to municipal and industrial clients across the United States. In her role as a project manager, technical lead and mentor, Lori excels in navigating the intricacies of multiple complex water and wastewater treatment and conveyance projects.
“I was asked to serve as a subconsultant to Hoyle Tanner on the Milford WWTF upgrade project. I enjoyed working with Kirstin, Amy and Mallory so much that I asked to sign on as a Hoyle Tanner employee. It’s been truly wonderful to work with so many accomplished female engineers.”
These women are amazing, and the great news is that there is room on our growing team! Are you looking for a team to learn from and grow with? Reach out to Kirstin or check out various openings on our careers page!