Video Honors SAME XD Dr. Wolff


After 12 years as SAME Executive Director, Dr. Robert D. “Bob” Wolff, P.E., F.SAME, has announced his plan to retire in 2014. And while Bob hasn’t left the building just yet, SAME HQ and the national leadership team did not want to miss the best opportunity of the year to recognize him for all he has done to move the society forward this past decade-plus.At the opening session of the 2014 JETC in Orlando last week, then-SAME President Rear Adm. Gary Engle, P.E., F.SAME, USN (Ret.) surprised Dr. Wolff and the audience with a video tribute to recognize his dedication to SAME.

The video features a photo montage of Dr. Wolff’s SAME adventures the past 12 years, as well as personal remembrances from a number of recent SAME leaders—among them Past Presidents Maj. Gen. Del Eulberg, F.SAME, USAF (Ret.) and Maj. Gen. Tim Byers, F.SAME, USAF (Ret.), Bill Brown, P.E., HAIA, F.SAME, Chair of the Academy of Fellows, 40-year SAME member Lt. Col. Buddy Barnes, P.E., F.SAME, USA (Ret.), Julie Fisher, F.SAME, former Chair of the SAME Wounded Warrior Task Force, and new SAME President Col. John Mogge, Ph.D., RA, F.SAME, USAF (Ret.). While each SAME leader had different stories of Bob, all shared the same sentiment: Dr. Wolff brought SAME into the 21st century as no else could.

Dr. Wolff became SAME Executive Director in September 2002. Prior to becoming Executive Director, he served in a variety of increasingly demanding engineering and leadership positions in the U.S. Army, U.S. Air Force and the private sector for 37 years. He was an active duty Army engineer officer for nine years after graduating from West Point in 1965, serving in Germany, Fort Lewis, Wash., Fort Belvoir, Va., Washington, D.C., Vietnam, and Cambodia. He then served another 17 years in the Army Reserves, retiring in 1992 as a Lieutenant Colonel.

Dr. Wolff obtained a doctorate in Civil Engineering from Stanford University while on active duty, after which he spent 20 years as a civilian with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers in Washington, D.C. as the Deputy Chief of Policy and Planning Divisions, HQ USACE; Fort Belvoir, Va., as the Director of Facilities Engineer, U.S. Army Engineering and Housing Support Center; and Baltimore, Md., as the Chief, Engineering Division, Baltimore District. In 1994, he was selected to be the senior civilian civil engineer for the U.S. Air Force as a member of the Senior Executive Service. Dr. Wolff held that position for three years, after which he was promoted to the Director of Logistics Plans for the Air Force. He retired from federal service in 1998. From 1998 to 2002, he was a Vice President with CH2M HILL,  working in transportation, infrastructure and environmental programs.

Dr. Wolff has been an SAME member since 1983 and a Fellow since 1995. He served on the Board of the Baltimore Post and was President of the Washington DC Post. On the national level, he served on the Board of Direction as Chairman of the Technology Advancement Committee and later as Chairman of the Education Committee. In 1992, he was awarded the Goethals Medal for Engineering Achievement. Dr. Wolff is also a member of the American Society of Civil Engineers, the Army Engineer Association, the Air Force Association, the Reserve Officers Association, the Association of the U.S. Army, and the National Defense Industrial Association. He and his wife Phyllis reside in Potomac, Md. They have two children (Dina and Allen) and two grandchildren (Jocelyn and Bryce).

SAME’s national leadership is currently undertaking a search for the next SAME “XD.” While Dr. Wolff may be leaving the front office at Century House in the near future, we all know he won’t ever be leave SAME! And we wouldn’t want it any other way.

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