Commitment to Engineering Instruction and U.S. Air Force Operations Garners 2014 Federal Engineer of the Year Award

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Stacey A. Ober
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Friday, February 21, 2014

Captain Timothy Callahan, P.E., an instructor and course director at the Air Force Institute of Technology's Civil Engineer School at Wright Patterson Air Force Base in Ohio, has been named the National Society of Professional Engineers’ 2014 Federal Engineer of the Year. Callahan received the honor during the 35th Annual FEYA Banquet at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C., on February 20, 2014.

“It's an incredible honor,” said Callahan, shortly after he was named the winner, “especially when I looked around the room and heard about all the other candidates and their accomplishments. It was a busy year and we accomplished a lot in our school, but it’s still amazing to be recognized out of a field of academic, research, and practicing engineers.”

As director of the Air Force Civil Engineer Basic Course, Callahan leads 30 civil engineering school faculty and 28 guest instructors. This role has integrated 176 officers into the career field’s first “total force” initial skills courses, while simultaneously orchestrating the development of distance learning content for future editions of the course. One of his most notable courses was the Air Force Institute of Technology’s first provincial reconstruction team project management course. He developed the course that taught 77 engineers across the US Air Force, Navy, and Army how best to execute a $400 million commander emergency response program mission in Afghanistan. He has also revamped how the school’s students provide feedback, reducing costs by 90 percent.

Callahan excels as the school’s subject matter expert in sustainable construction and project management, and has taught over 1,300 airmen in 47 courses during his two-plus years as an instructor. He leads the school’s commitment to online education, developing the first online cost estimation course and the first Civil PE exam review course, an online-accessible tool for US Air Force engineers worldwide.

As a result of his exemplary service and contributions to his profession, Callahan has received much prestigious recognition and numerous awards, including the Lance P. Sijan USAF Leadership Award from the Air Force Institute of Technology, Company Grade Officer of the Year by the Department of Engineering Management at The Civil Engineer School, and both Air Force and Army Commendation Medals. He holds a bachelor’s and a master’s in civil engineering, both earned from the University of Southern California, and he is a member of numerous organizations including NSPE, the Society of American Military Engineers, the American Society of Civil Engineers, and the United States Green Building Council. Callahan is active in his local community through Habitat for Humanity, the STEM Education Coalition, and his church.  

A panel of judges established by NSPE’s Professional Engineers in Government selects the FEYA winner. Hailing from various federal agencies, departments, and military branches, the nominated engineers are evaluated based on factors such as engineering achievements, education, professional and technical society activities, awards and honors, and civic and humanitarian activities. For more information about the program or how to submit nominations for 2015, contact Erin Garcia-Reyes at or 703-684-2884.

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The National Society of Professional Engineers is the national society of licensed professional engineers from all disciplines that promotes the ethical and competent practice of engineering, advocates licensure, and enhances the image and well-being of its members. Founded in 1934, NSPE serves more than 35,000 members and the public through 53 state and territorial societies and just over 400 chapters. For more information, please visit

EDITOR’S NOTE: Digital photos of Callahan, the ceremony, and additional award winners are currently available.