USACE Galveston Celebrates 131 Years of Building Strong with Boat Christening and Ribbon-Cutting Ceremony


The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Galveston District, celebrated its 131st birthday with the christening of the Tanner II survey boat, followed by a Galveston Chamber of Commerce ribbon-cutting ceremony to welcome the district as its newest member, Feb. 15, 2011, at its headquarters building on the east end of Galveston Island.

Members of the chamber and Twila Lindblade, a representative of U.S. Congressman Ron Paul’s office, joined the late Sydney Tanner’s family (for whom the boat was named after) and district employees in recognizing Tanner’s professional contributions during his 33-year tenure.

“This is a great opportunity to bring the community together to celebrate the legacy Sydney Tanner built in our community, the professional contributions he made to the Corps as an engineer, mentor and teacher as well as the impact he made in furthering the strong partnerships USACE Galveston District has developed and maintained within this community to which we have belonged for the last 131 years,” said Col. Christopher Sallese, commander of the USACE Galveston District.

The late Tanner began his career with the Corps at the Galveston District in 1964 in the Design Branch and served in numerous supervisory civil engineer positions. In addition to his final position as chief, Coastal Planning Branch, he also served as special assistant to the chief of the Planning Division from 1994 until his retirement in December 1997.

“The Corps’ navigation mission has contributed immensely to the Galveston community and nation, providing navigable waterways to allow for the continued movement of commerce to the various ports,” said Joe Hrametz, chief of the district’s Operations Division. “The Tanner II survey boat will be an essential tool in carrying out our navigation mission, ensuring commercial traffic will continue through the vital channels that contribute to the economic success of the nation.”

The Tanner II is a single and multi-beam frequency survey boat that will be used to survey navigable waterways to pinpoint shoaling areas that may need dredging. Additionally, it will monitor dredges currently performing work on channels and it can be used to detect debris in waterways after storms.

“The Galveston Chamber of Commerce is pleased to welcome the Galveston District of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to our membership,” said Gina M. Spagnola, president of the Galveston Chamber of Commerce. “This relationship will be a great way for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to create positive synergy with our local business community. The Galveston Chamber looks forward to the potential for collaborations between our organizations.”

The Galveston District was established in 1880 to facilitate navigation along the Texas coastline. In addition to its deepening projects and jetty construction, the iconic Galveston Seawall, which has protected the City of Galveston for more than 100 years, was also completed in partnership with Galveston County after the 1900 hurricane.

USACE Galveston District obligated more than $200 million toward dredging efforts in fiscal year 2010 (from Oct. 1, 2009, through Sept. 30, 2010), including both new work and maintenance as well as needed work to placement areas and work on the Colorado River Locks and Brazos River floodgates. This figure includes supplemental money and regular federal dollars.


Source: usace, February 28, 2011