Joan M. Miller, PE

Senior Vice President, Energy and Chemicals
BSCE ’79

In recognition of her accomplishments in environmental preservation and sustainability, and her leadership in promoting inclusivity for women in engineering

Joan Miller likes to get things done — particularly engineering projects. “The part of engineering I liked best was seeing the final built environment — not just drawings or calculations,” she says. “That brought me to focus on construction and project management within civil engineering.”

Miller has held many roles during her 30 years with CH2M HILL, a global provider of engineering, construction, and operations services for private industry, as well as federal, state, and local governments.

In her current role as senior vice president for the Energy and Chemicals Group, Miller focuses on client relationship development, strategic account program management, strategic planning, and marketing. She works with account teams all over the world.

“I enjoy bringing people skills and management solutions together, and working with clients to determine the best project-delivery approach,” she says. Her past roles have included leading the Department of Energy (DOE) account, environmental projects, and the design and construction of CH2M HILL’s 90,000-square-foot office in Corvallis, Oregon, using sustainable building practices.

“My focus on environmental preservation and sustainability began during the 1980s when I worked on the first hazardous waste cleanup contracts in the industry under the EPA Superfund program,” Miller says. “That interest continued as I became involved in nuclear cleanup projects and now has emerged through my focus on energy. Today, one of the most interesting areas of my work involves CO2 management, from carbon strategy development through CO2 capture and treatment. This is a growing area globally, and will impact many of our future client projects.”

In 2003, Miller founded the CH2M HILL Women’s Network, designed to create a more inclusive culture supporting the attraction, development, and retention of women. In 2009, CH2M HILL was the first company in the male-dominated engineering and construction industry to receive the Catalyst Award in recognition of its efforts to develop and advance women in the company. Catalyst works globally with businesses and professions to build inclusive workplaces and expand opportunities for women in business.

“We need to continue to develop role models and reach out to high school and university students to help women understand that engineering is a desirable career,” Miller says. “And we need more flexibility in the work environment to allow women’s careers to ebb and flow — with periods of intense activity and upward mobility and periods where they may want to focus on other aspects of personal or professional development.”

Miller is a member of the Civil Engineering Advisory Council and is also very involved in women’s leadership activities in her community. “I can honestly say that I get as much, if not more, out of these activities as I give,” she says. “It is critically important that we serve as role models to the next generation of engineers.”

Career Highlights

Current Senior Vice President, Energy and Chemical Business Group, CH2M HILL
2006–2009 Member, CH2M HILL Board of Directors
2002–2008 Senior Vice President, Client Development and Marketing, Industrial Client Group, CH2M HILL
2000–2002 Vice President, Telecommunications Business Group, CH2M HILL
1994–2000 Vice President, Energy, Environment and Systems Business Group, CH2M HILL
1992–1994 Vice President, Environmental Business Group, CH2M HILL
1989–1992 Program Manager, Hazardous Waste Cleanup Projects, CH2M HILL
1985–1989 Manager for Environmental Hazardous Waste Projects, CH2M HILL
1983–1985 Subcontracts Manager, National EPA Superfund Contract, CH2M HILL
1980–1983 Construction Manager, CH2M HILL
1979 BSCE, Purdue University