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Engineers of the Moment: Ethan Cotton & Evram Dawd

Evram (L) and Ethan (R) in LERA's NY office.

This month's "Engineers of the Moment" are Ethan Cotton and Evram Dawd! Both outstanding structural engineers in their own right, each exemplify a deep passion and commitment to their profession and community. We're honoring their recent service to Engineers Without Borders, for which they've dedicated countless hours of their free time to help design the structure of a maize storage facility that will provide the local farming community in Rubaya, Rwanda with access to improved infrastructure.

Ethan, an Associate in LERA's NY office, works on a variety of civic, residential and academic projects. Some of his major projects include the Roy and Diana Vagelos Education Center in New York, NY, the M3M Golf View Estate in Gurgaon, India and a mixed-use development in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Ethan is an active member of SEAoNY's Education Committee, and serves as a lecturer for the ARE Exam. He also plays a key role in LERA's team for Canstruction NY, an annual charitable design competition and food drive, for which he has helped to win multiple awards and previously served as Team Captain. In addition, he serves as a mentor for underprivileged youth through NYC's Big Brother program, helping his mentees gain exposure and experience in the AEC industry through summer internships.

Evram joined LERA in 2017 as a Design Engineer, and focuses his work on civic and residential projects. An avid volunteer, he mentors local youth around the New York metro area through the Coptic Orthodox Archdiocese, in addition to lecturing at various local universities and high schools. As LERA's Team Captain for Canstruction NY 2017, he helped the team win Best Original Design for "A Rising Tide," an 8-ft sailboat made from over 4,000 sardine cans, which were donated to City Harvest at the end of the competition. In guiding LERA's team to the top prize, he demonstrated excellent leadership and project management ability.

As members of the Engineers Without Borders USA, New York Professional Chapter, both Ethan (Responsible Engineer In Charge) and Evram (Technical Team Member) have been working together with Goodneighboors, a maize farming cooperative based in northern Rwanda, to design and construct a 30-ton pilot maize storage facility in Rubaya, Rwanda. The 1,600-sf structure will store one season's maize harvest, helping Goodneighbors to sell their raw maize to larger manufacturers more efficiently, and will cost approximately $25,000. The EWB-NY team worked tirelessly to raise awareness and all of the funding for the project, including organizing a local fundraiser in New York City to reach their goals.

Having completed the design, Ethan and Evram will now travel separately in March to help oversee construction in person. Stay tuned for updates on their trip!

Pictured below: a 3D model of the proposed storage facility, a meeting between members of EWB and Goodneighbors and a recent photo of the site.

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