Breean Henderson Zimmerman (BS Geology, 2004)
Hydrogeologist and Mom in Yakima Valley, Washington
After graduating from CWU Geology, I was incredibly fortunate to immediately find employment as an Environmental Scientist at a small consulting firm in Tri-Cities, Wa. This was VERY exciting and rewarding to say the least. I was primarily hired to lead final clean-up actions at a Superfund site located in the lower Yakima Valley. This included soil sampling, groundwater sampling and monitoring, writing my first Engineering Design Report, Construction Plans and Specifications report, Compliance Monitoring and Sampling and Analysis Plans...you know, fun and exciting office/paper work stuff. I oversaw all on-site work such as excavations, building demolition, loading and hauling contaminated soils and debris. I even jumped in a backhoe and dug my first trench, it doesn't sound that rad, but I'm telling you...it was RAD!
In addition to environment cleanup, our office provided project management services for an up and coming museum that will be built in the Tri-Cities area. I played the permitting role in our project management capacity. I was the office SEPA/NEPA contact, preparing SEPA/NEPA documents for projects, assisting in the Section 106 Process (Archeological Historic Preservation Act) involving the consultation with five different Native American Tribes, and was fortunate to travel around the states for different trainings and conferences enjoying America's fine wine, beer, more wine, more beer and food...life was rough!
Next on the employment menu was a position as a Water Rights Specialist for Department of Ecology. I was the primary SEPA reviewer/commenter for the Regional Water Resources Program, was instrumental in the region's exempt well issues while assisting local city, county, and health department staff on exempt well use, I provided technical assistance and was the primary contact for several County Water Conservancy Board's located in our region, I reviewed and provided technical assistance for water system planning, and, and, and other water right related stuff...
Presently I am a Hydrogeologist for Ecology's Toxic Cleanup Program. I primarily serve as a site manager, reviewing the kind of documents I used to write in my earlier days. My present position allows for me to be out in the field more often! I work for a fantastic program and am incredibly appreciative to work with the brilliant folks I work with.
Though I've learned so much over the last handful of years and enjoy what I'm doing, nothing compares to my most precious and rewarding position of all...watching my family grow, experience life, and thrive. I have three boys, ages 17, 6, and 3...well I guess I really have four boys; my oldest boy is pushing 40. We live on two acres and have four goats (in the spring we'll have baby goats!), two horses, and two dogs... I hope to develop my gardening skills and horsemanship knowledge and technique, if time will allow. I've toyed with the idea of having one more child, keeping with tradition it would probably be a boy, but now that we're armpit deep in Kindergartner activities, I've begun to smell the sweet yet pungent smell of an extremely tight schedule and making darn skippy you're on "your game"...Information last updated on Jul 28, 2014