2020 40 Under 40: Dana Al-Qadi, D.Eng, 30
Senior Engineering Consultant, AECOM, Chicago; Doctorate, The George Washington University
Al-Qadi’s career in engineering began with an undergraduate research opportunity at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in an environmental engineering laboratory. Already a declared biology major, she was so impacted by her research on safe drinking water supply, she changed her path of study to engineering. In her continuing effort to help people, Al-Qadi’s work now focuses on advancing communities and infrastructure to achieve their priorities through innovation and technology. She is a civil and environmental engineer with experience in electrification, carbon reduction, smart cities, energy and drinking water treatment and design. Her current projects include electrification planning, smart city technologies, artificial intelligence, asset management, energy efficiency, urban and rural resilience, performance metrics and stakeholder engagement. Some of her notable projects include smart street lighting, smart sensors and networks, microgrids, net zero buildings/communities, coordinated infrastructure investment, energy-water nexus, community solar installations and electric mobility. Most recently, she has played a key role in AECOM’s work with communities to address the recent COVID-19 pandemic. Al-Qadi’s career is rooted in community, mentorship and youth education. She firmly believes that advancing the engineering profession requires developing the next generation workforce by cultivating their skills and interest in STEM. An avid runner, she is currently training for her second marathon. Several of her runs have been for Team Palestine, a team that provides support for the Palestine Children’s Relief Fund, a nonprofit organization that provides free medical care to children in the Middle East. Further celebrating her cultural identity, Al-Qadi’s serves on the film procurement committee of the Chicago Palestinian Film Festival, the world’s longest running Palestinian film festival. She also can be found with her nose buried in a book.