Company announces support of sustainable infrastructure research and development during acceptance of the Ad Astra Award from the Kansas Chamber of Commerce
Black & Veatch Chairman, President and CEO Len Rodman pledged $1 million of the company’s future earnings to support research and development across the university system in Kansas over the course of the next decade.
The announcement was made as Black & Veatch accepted the Ad Astra award during the Kansas Chamber of Commerce’s Annual Dinner on Tuesday night.
“Because we believe deeply in the need for innovation to address the long-term needs for sustainable infrastructure and the strong role that education must play to support new solutions, the Black & Veatch Building a World of Difference® Foundation will invest over the next decade $1 million from our future earnings with the university system in Kansas to fund research and development of technologies for clean energy, safe water and advanced communications infrastructure,” Rodman said.
Rodman stressed the need for continued global infrastructure investment during his acceptance remarks. He cited the American Society of Civil Engineers’ (ASCE) 2009 Report Card of America’s Infrastructure that states $2.2 trillion is needed to upgrade vital water, wastewater, energy and transportation infrastructure across the country. In Kansas, the ASCE estimates more than $4 billion is needed over the next 20 years for upgrades to water, wastewater and energy infrastructure alone.
Rodman also cited the positive economic impacts infrastructure investment provides to communities, the state and region. For example, the Economic Impact Model from the County Economic Research Institute, affiliated with Johnson County Community College, shows the direct-effects employment multiplier for engineering and technical services is approximately three. This means, for every job within the engineering and technical services industry group, an additional two jobs are supported across all sectors of the regional economy.
In addition, the U.S. Conference of Mayors has reported that every dollar invested in infrastructure spending yields $1.60 in long-term Gross Domestic Product through direct and in-direct job creation, consumer spending and greater efficiencies.
“It is imperative that the state advance its role in the global race for competitive, innovative technology and best-of-class students,” said Rodman. “We hope that in some small way our pledge encourages further understanding of the importance and vital role that critical infrastructure plays in assuring the economic vitality of the country and the state of Kansas. Our economic well being and social fabric depend heavily on abundant, cost-effective clean energy, adequate supplies of safe water and reliable communications networks to provide a foundation for creating 21st century jobs.”
- Black & Veatch will work with representatives across the university system in Kansas to develop a structure to determine how pledged funds will be allocated over the course of the next 10 years.
- The Kansas Chamber of Commerce presents the Ad Astra Award to one business each year that exemplifies both business and civic excellence within the state. The award is presented at the Kansas Chamber’s Annual Dinner, the largest statewide gathering of business and political leaders in Kansas.
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About Black & Veatch
Black & Veatch is an employee-owned, global leader in building critical human infrastructure in Energy, Water, Telecommunications and Government Services. Since 1915, we have helped our clients improve the lives of people in over 100 countries through consulting, engineering, construction, operations and program management. Our revenues in 2018 were US$3.5 billion. Follow us on www.bv.com and in social media.