News: Spotlight on USACE Galveston District’s Bill Krampe
Story by Stephen Sheedy
HOUSTON, Texas — When engineer equipment operator Bill Krampe of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ Houston Project Office arrives to work in the morning, he can never be too sure what he will be doing that day.
In addition to operating heavy engineering equipment at Addicks and Barker dams and reservoirs, Krampe is responsible for a myriad of other duties at the USACE Houston Project Office that keeps his days both occupied and varied.
“I act as a liaison between my supervisor and other offices, agencies, visitors and small contractors,” said Krampe. “I keep up with maintenance at the field office and the dams and I’m responsible for some of the clerical duties as well. I’m also responsible for work that falls under the heading, ‘other duties as assigned.’”
According to Natural Resource Manager Richard Long, USACE Houston Project Office, Krampe was hired precisely because of his ability to juggle so many different tasks.
“I needed a Jack of all trades, and with Bill, I certainly got one,” said Long.
Krampe’s knowledge of engineering equipment is vast enough to keep him busy on any construction site.
“I know how to operate forklifts, farm tractors, overhead cranes, trenchers, dozers, wheeled and tracked loaders, scrappers, trucks and old fabrication equipment,” said Krampe. “I used to build stuff for the oilfield in fabrication ships and I still enjoy building and fixing things.”
Currently, Krampe is working on a rehabilitation project on the Addicks and Barker outlet structures. As part of that project, Krampe is also participating with the renovations of some of the maintenance and access roads on top of the dams.
As part of his versatility, Krampe accepted another Corps responsibility this past year - a job that has nothing to do with operating heavy equipment or working on a construction site. He became the Corps’ best known advocate for water safety.
“Last year I was chosen to play Bobber, the Water Safety Dog, and that role is a lot of fun,” said Krampe. “I remember last year wearing the suit and walking through the Jadwin Building greeting a lot of the fine folks that work with the Galveston District. I still look at those pictures from time to time. What a job!”
A USACE Galveston District employee for 23 years, Krampe says his decision to remain with the district for so long is a testament to the dedication of his co-workers.
“For years, I always took an offer for more money or a position I believed was better because I felt the grass was always greener on the other side,” said Krampe. “Here I’ve been with the same folks for a long time and I feel like they’re family. I’m amazed and thankful for the quality of folks I work with everyday.”
Krampe is a husband, father of three and grandfather of four children. In his spare time he enjoys building shelves and cabinets for family and friends and also dabbles in amateur radio.