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Member News — Matrix New World Engineering Trail-Blazer Selected as Commissioner of the McDowell Sonoran Preserve Commission
May 24th, 2018

Laurie LaPat-Polasko, PhD, QEP, Vice-President, National Director of Remediation, Matrix New World Engineering, Inc. (Matrix), was selected by the Scottsdale City Council members to be one of their Commissioners. This position is for a three year term.

The McDowell Sonoran Preserve Commission consists of seven (7) citizen members. The Commission, with the assistance of city staff, makes recommendations to the City Council on such items as: preservation strategy, funding, land acquisition, educational/promotional programs, master planning and other Preserve-related issues. The Commission reports to the City Council on a quarterly basis regarding progress and any specific requests from the council relating to the McDowell Sonoran Preserve.

According to Jayne Warne, PE, President, “Matrix is fortunate to have such an outstanding business woman on our team. We cannot be more proud of Laurie’s accomplishments and her hard work. Matrix looks forward to many more of Laurie’s achievements and wish her continued success.”

Dr. LaPat-Polasko stated, “I am honored to serve the city of Scottsdale. The protection of the McDowell Sonoran Preserve is extremely important for the future generations of Arizona.”

Dr. Laurie LaPat-Polasko has more than 25 years of experience as a technical consultant, project manager and chief science officer for efforts involving groundwater and soil remediation and wastewater treatment. She combines her knowledge of microbiology with a background in civil engineering to develop cost effective remediation solutions for groundwater, surface water, soil and sediments impacted by organic and inorganic compounds. She has managed and performed numerous remedial investigation/feasibility study (RI/FS) efforts for complex problems associated with surface waters, groundwater and discharges from sewer systems. She has dealt with contaminants ranging from fluoride and arsenic to chlorinated organics, 1,4-dioxane, explosives and fuel compounds. She has also performed chemical fingerprinting analyses to establish the source and fate and transport of various contaminants in groundwater. Laurie has been actively involved in numerous Superfund (CERCLA) sites. She has developed, designed and implemented remediation plans for water and soil systems. She has field-and laboratory-tested aerobic and anaerobic methods for treating contaminated groundwater and soil and has studied the treatment role of various microbial communities. She has taught several graduate courses in water and soil remediation at Arizona State University. She also has extensive experience interacting with USEPA and various state, county and city regulatory agencies in the USA and overseas.

A true trailblazer, in the early 1980s, Laurie was one of 10 people selected into the Mass Media Science & Engineering Fellows program sponsored by the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) which led to her affiliation with KTEH Public Television in San Jose, CA. It was there she spent time producing documentaries on the science of communication by interviewing scientists that studied dolphins at Marine World Africa USA and sea lions at California State University Hayward. From this vantage point, she was to able to observe and understand why communication skills are so critical to how we interconnect with each other.

Formed in 1990, Matrix is a leading woman-owned full-service engineering and environmental services firm. Matrix is working on a wide range of infrastructure, building and environmental projects for public and private-sector clients throughout the United States. The Florham Park, NJ-based company has offices in the Northeast as well as Arizona, Louisiana and Texas.

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