CalGeo E Newsletter

December 19, 2011

Happy Holidays from CalGeo!


Noted Economist to Speak at CalGeo's 2012 Annual Conference


Chapman University economist Dr. Esmeal Adibi

Dr. Esmeal Adibi

Noted Chapman University economist Dr. Esmeal Adibi will headline our series of speakers at the CalGeo Annual Conference, to be held April 18-20, 2012 in Maui. Dr. Adibi has become one of the most popular presenters at the annual event, and is always interesting, informative, entertaining and amazingly accurate. Dr. Adibi will present Chapman's forecast for upcoming national and California economic conditions, with emphasis on economic factors and trends affecting geotechnical consulting firms.


Annual Conference Speaker »

Loss Prevention Seminar »

OPA Entries »

Here Today, Gone to Maui »

DFI Seminar »

Salary Survey »

Member News »

Legislative Happenings »

Student Chapter »

Japanese Geotech Society »

Job Board »

Write for e.Geo »

Safety First »

Plans for the Annual Conference are being finalized and more speakers will be announced in the coming weeks.



Time to Register for the Loss Prevention Seminars

Coming in January & February 2012


Registration packets are now available on our website for CalGeo's Loss Prevention Seminars.

Southern California
Saturday, January 28, 2012
Embassy Suites in Santa Ana
7:30 am to 3 pm

Registration and more information

Northern California
Saturday, February 11, 2012
Courtyard by Marriott in Fairfield
7:30 am to 3 pm

Registration and more information


Cost: $75 for members (multi-attendee discounts available)
$125 for non-members
“FREE” if your company belongs to our Safety Group through State Compensation Insurance Fund. See the registration information for safety group members that is included in the links for both the Northern and Southern California registration information above.

Seminar registration fees include all seminar presentations, breakfast, lunch and refreshment breaks, a seminar notebook, and a Certificate of Attendance for each attendee with CEU or PDH credits.

The deadline for registering and returning these forms for both the Southern and Northern California seminars is Friday, January 13, 2012.

We hope to see you here!

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Call for Entries

Outstanding Project Awards: 2011 – 2012


Gary Gilbert and John Hoobs

Award winner, Gary Gilbert of Diaz-Yourman & Associates (left) with CalGeo Past President John Hoobs (right), 2011

CalGeo will again be recognizing firms for their outstanding geotechnical projects at our next Annual Conference in April. Entries will be judged on innovation, difficulty of the investigation (difficulty of construction for design build projects), quality of report, success of interaction between the design team, and social impact of the project. Entries will be divided into three categories based on the total fees billed for the project. Winners of each category will be awarded an engraved trophy and given the opportunity to present their project at the Annual Conference.

This year, for the first time, we are inviting Individual and Affiliate members and non-member firms to enter as well, and we've streamlined the entry process to make it easier to submit.


Please consider spotlighting your company's technical achievements by submitting a project by January 27, 2012. Click here to download the rules and application package.


Award winners will be highlighted April 20th at the Outstanding Project Awards luncheon during the Annual Conference in Maui.


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Here Today, Gone To Maui

Lahaina Town: A National Historic Landmark


Lahaina Town, Hawaii
Mark Your Calendars!
CalGeo Annual Conference April 18 – 20
Lahaina, Maui

Take a trim, tidy New England whaling town, plunk it in the middle of the Pacific, sketch in some rainbow-crowned mountains, and add a generous helping of palm trees. Stir in the biggest Buddha outside of Asia, a banyan tree the size of a city block, and a history that reads like an epic novel, and you might come close to defining Lahaina.


This fun-loving historic town was once the capital of the Hawaiian kingdom and the seat of power for the Kamehameha dynasty in the early nineteenth century. By the mid-1800s, with as many as 400 ships at a time berthed in the harbor, spilling up to 1,500 sailors ashore, Lahaina went on to become the lusty port of the Yankee whaling fleet. The whalers said there was no God west of the Horn, and they conducted themselves accordingly - until a band of puritanical missionaries arrived from New England to spoil the ribald party. The battles between the reverends and the revelers became legendary. Among the sailors was Herman Melville, who immortalized the era in his classic novel, Moby Dick.

Do you want to have a whale of a time with CalGeo? Click here for information about CalGeo's Annual Conference in Maui.


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Deep Foundation Institute

Bay Area Force-Pulse Seminar


On January 17th, the Deep Foundation Institute will present a seminar hosted at the Foundation Constructors Inc. Yard in Oakley, CA. To learn more and register for this upcoming seminar, visit Deep Foundations website by clicking here.


You can also visit CalGeo's website for this seminar and registration information by clicking here.


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Salary Survey Questionnaire

By Danny Cohen
BSK Associates


Every year CalGeo conducts a salary survey of both technical and non-technical employees across the state to help our members make responsible business decisions. After producing this report for a number of years, we want to know if you find it valuable and if there are ways we can make it more useful for our members.

We know the last thing you want to do is take the time to respond to another bunch of questions about how to respond to a bunch of other questions. But participation in an organization such as CalGeo is key to making the organization relevant. So, when you receive the salary survey questionnaire, please take the time to respond and let us know how we can use this tool to better serve your needs.


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Member News

Evolving Leadership at Stoney-Miller Consultants, Inc.


Dr. John Foster, Ph.D., has joined the Stoney-Miller team. Dr. Foster specializes in the geologic structure of landslides, landslide failure hazards, and water resource evaluation. Congratulations are also extended to Russ Lamb on his promotion to Chief Engineer.


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Legislative Happenings

CalGeo Hires Legislative Consultant


Rick Keene

Rick Keene

For years, CalGeo has explored ways to enhance our legislative effectiveness. In response, we have hired Rick Keene as a legislative consultant to provide a new, more proactive direction to our government policy efforts.

Some of you may remember Rick from our Annual Conference in Sonoma, where he shared with us about the state budget and effective political engagement. Others may recall his three terms as a State Assemblyman or his eight years on Chico's City Council.

Rick's experiences and relationships within the state capital will provide CalGeo a unique opportunity to influence important items that have an impact on all our companies. Many of you will get the chance to share your thoughts with him at our Annual Conference in 2012.


CalGeo's Legislative Committee Chair Bob Lokteff is working closely with Rick to develop an action plan to allow CalGeo to be a more active presence on legislative issues. Look for regular updates regarding CalGeo's legislative progress.


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Student Chapter Update

UCLA Student Chapter Opens School Year With A Sizzle

By Pavlo Chrysovergis, CalGeo Student Chapter President – UCLA
Sean Ahdi, CalGeo Student Chapter Vice President - UCLA



With hot dog in hand, chapter President Pavlo Chrysovergis poses with the 2011 Rising Star Award, along with alumnus Kartik Atyam, Ph.D . candidate Ahmadreza Mortezaie, and faculty advisor Scott Brandenberg.

Last year, the UCLA student chapter was extremely active, inviting several speakers to talk about projects, taking large groups of students on field trips, placing fifth nationally in the MSE Wall design competition, and finishing off the successful year with earning the prestigious Rising Star Award.

To start off this school year, we have already hosted a Fall BBQ, where graduate and undergraduate students were able to mingle and soak up geotechnical knowledge from UCLA professors Mladen Vucetic and Scott Brandenberg, as well as numerous CalGeo members.

The future looks bright for our chapter with the large influx of new younger officers and a contingent of younger students who have already shown interest and attended the Fall BBQ. To build upon our success from last year, we are looking forward to hosting guest speakers from Geosyntec, Fugro, and Shannon & Wilson, just to name a few. Representatives give presentations about current and upcoming projects their companies are undertaking; as well as give students an inside perspective of what it's like to work for these large companies.


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A Message from the Japanese Geotechnical Society

Submitted by:
Dr. Osamu Kusakabe
President of Japanese Geotechnical Society

Dr. Yoichi Watabe
Secretary of Japanese Geotechnical Society


To read a summary of the East Japan Great Earthquake Disaster of March 11, and to read the published "Geo-Hazards During Earthquakes and Mitigation Measures – Lessons and Recommendations from the 2011 Great East Japan Earthquake," click here.


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Job Board


Visit our website for the latest information on current available positions throughout the industry, including:

  • Workflow/Office Manager with Geotechnical Firm
  • ICC Certified Technicians with BSK Associates in Fresno/Bakersfield


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Write For e.Geo!



At the beach working with laptop

Somewhere it's a beautiful day on the beach. Whether you are there or not, please take out a few minutes and write an article for e.Geo.

Click here for e.Geo Publication Standards.


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Safety First

Workplace Safety: The Painless Way to Save

Courtesy of the California State Compensation Insurance Fund


When you have fewer and less-costly injuries at work, you save on workers' comp claims costs, which may reduce the premium you pay for your policy. A safe workplace can bring you other competitive benefits, such as greater productivity and higher employee morale.

  • Make safety a priority on the job everyday. A safe workplace can lower your claims costs. It is far less expensive to prevent an accident than to pay for one.
  • The workplace environment is never the same, so be vigilant. Whether your place of business is in the city, suburbs, farmland, or country, the workplace environment is always in a state of flux. Wet umbrellas can make any floor slippery.
  • A machine that was working yesterday is now broken and employees are performing tasks by hand. For those working outside, California's climate can quickly change from cold to hot and back to cold again regardless of the season. So assess your work environment with fresh eyes everyday, and be on the lookout for changes in conditions.
  • Fix dangerous conditions. When you become aware of a hazard on the jobsite, take appropriate corrective measures. Your failure to do so could result in a "Serious and Willful Misconduct" lawsuit against you. This suit carries severe penalties that you would pay, not your insurance carrier.


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