12:10 PM - 01:00 PM
15 September 2020

Building Hoover Dam

Hoover Dam is rightly regarded as one of the greatest civil engineering achievements in history. While Hoover Dam is mired in some controversy for safety and labor practices, built during the great depression, it must be regarded as not only a triumph of engineering, but also a triumph of the human spirit. Large concrete dam construction was in its infancy in the early twentieth century. Hoover Dam’s successful construction and enduring ability to harness the Colorado River are the result of the convergence of extraordinary men, machines, and methods. This presentation highlights how the right people, the right, machines, and the right methods all came together in the spring of 1931 to build a dam of unprecedented scope and challenges.

Paul Giroux received his BS in Construction Engineering from Iowa State University in 1979. For the past four decades, he has been with Kiewit Corporation, working on a wide variety of heavy civil engineering mega projects throughout the United States. Paul played a key role in notable projects such as the Fort McHenry Tunnel in Baltimore, several hydroelectric projects, several projects on the Big Dig in Boston including the new Zakim/Bunker Hill Bridge, the new San Francisco Oakland Bay Bridge East Span, and Folsom Spillway Project. Paul serves on the Iowa State University Civil Engineering Advisory Board, the Transportation Research Board, and several American Society of Civil Engineering (ASCE) committees.


  • Lawrence M. Magura P.E., D.WRE, LLC, Consulting Water Resources Engineer, EWRI History & Heritage Committee


  • Raymond “Paul” Giroux, Dist.M.ASCE