USACE Southwestern Division Special - Col. Zetterstrom & Gen. Owen

We take a deep dive into the high command of the SWD

On this special edition of the American Shoreline Podcast we bring two interviews with the senior command of the USACE Southwestern Division. Up first, Colonel Lars Zetterstrom, Commander of the Galveston District discussed the historic slate of coastal projects slated for the Texas and Louisiana coast, including the "coastal spine" project to protect Houston. Then, we bring to you a conversation with Brig. Gen. Paul E. Owen, the Commander and Division Engineer of the Southwestern Division (SWD). The Division, which is headquartered in Dallas, is one of nine Corps of Engineers regional commands. With four District Offices (including the Zetterstrom's Galveston District), it encompasses all or part of seven states, and covers some 2.3 million acres of public land and water. As the SWD Commander and Division Engineer, Owen oversees hundreds of water resources development and military design and construction projects.

Peter Ravella & Tyler Buckingham

Peter and Tyler joined forces in 2015 and from the first meeting began discussing a project that would become Coastal News Today and the American Shoreline Podcast Network. At the time, Peter and Tyler were coastal consultants for Pete’s firm, PAR Consulting, LLC. In that role, they worked with coastal communities in Texas, Florida, and North Carolina, engaged in grant writing, coastal project development, shoreline erosion and land use planning, permitting, and financial planning for communities undertaking big beach restoration projects. Between and among their consulting tasks, they kept talking and kept building the idea of CNT & ASPN. In almost every arena they worked, public engagement played a central role. They spent thousands of hours talking with coastal stakeholders, like business owners, hotel operators, condo managers, watermen, property owners, enviros, surfers, and fishermen. They dived deep into the value, meaning, and responsibility for the American shoreline, segment-by-segment. Common threads emerged, themes were revealed, differences uncovered. There was a big conversation going on along the American shoreline! But, no place to have it. That's where CNT and ASPN were born.