Wonder Women of Water 2018: Karen Budgell

Congratulations to Karen!


Karen Budgell is a Senior Process Engineer and Water Treatment Group Lead at Golder Associates, Inc.  She has a Bachelor’s degree in Chemical Engineering and a Master’s degree in Environmental Engineering from Colorado School of Mines.

Her experience is in a variety of water treatment design, process engineering and process safety related projects for manufacturing, mining and industrial clients. She has particular expertise in the treatment of emerging contaminants (1,4-dioxane, nitrosamines) and low level selenium. This work includes developing bench- and pilot-scale systems, technology screening, life cycle cost comparison and detailed design.

Karen is a certified process hazard leader and has experience in conducting process hazards analyses, process safety management audits and hazard analysis reviews for complex industrial, research, and water treatment facilities. She mentors young engineers formally through established protocols and informally through on-the-job training.

In addition to her many faceted role at Golder, Karen has prepared and presented several technical papers on selenium treatment, utilizing a sustainability evaluation tool (GoldSET) to engage stakeholders during decision-making processes, and modelling trace organic contaminants through reverse osmosis systems for optimization of indirect potable reuse systems.

As her nominator says:

Karen is a driven and strong female engineer. She has worked hard to provide engineering solutions to waste water problems in a male-dominated industry, while balancing family needs. She works diligently to provide excellent water treatment engineering. She is passionate about water reuse and elegant engineering design. She continues to be a top performer in her area, and also networks and publishes within the industry.

Karen is an active and involved mother of three. She and her children trained for several years together in the Korean martial art of Taekwondo and received their black belts together. She has also served several key roles in her sons’ Cub Scout Pack and Boy Scout Troop. Community involvement has also included volunteering as Little League Vice President, assisting in grass-roots political organizations, organizing community food drives and participating in local neighborhood rehabilitation projects.  

Karen is very passionate about giving back to the community, implementing sustainable solutions for water treatment and management systems and encouraging young men and women to pursue STEM degrees.

To learn more about Karen and Golder Associates, Inc., click here.

The Wonder Women of Water is a recognition initiative focused on the contributions made by women to the water and wastewater industry.

Proudly sponsored by Hunter Crown. 

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