Briefcase: Applause for NM workers, companies - Albuquerque Journal

Briefcase: Applause for NM workers, companies

Parkhill of Rio Rancho has earned a National Recognition Award For Exemplary Engineering Achievement in the American Council of Engineering Companies’ 54th annual Engineering Excellence Awards for the Northern Delaware Basin Landfill Project in Lea County. The landfill is New Mexico’s first permitted disposal facility designed specifically to safely store fossil fuel exploration and production waste material. The facility can accept, process, and store all drilling fluids and solid wastes while fully safeguarding the environment. Diligent separation of liquids from the drilling fluid solids minimizes the potential for groundwater contamination.

In addition, the project team implemented traffic improvements around the landfill site to ensure safe, controlled access to and from one of the busiest roads in southeast New Mexico. Other features include multiple covered unloading and washout bays to speed waste unloading and vehicle throughput. The landfill and associated processing facilities are now capable of serving fossil fuel development activities in this area of the Permian Basin for decades to come.

Parkhill serves the Southwestern U.S. with comprehensive architectural and engineering design services.

The project is eligible for additional honors as part of 173 entries this year representing engineering excellence from throughout the nation and the world. Judging for the awards program — known industry-wide as the “Academy Awards of the engineering industry” — took place in February and was conducted by a 20-member national panel of built-environment leaders, along with experts from government, media and academia. Award criteria focused on uniqueness and originality, technical innovation, social and economic value, and generating excitement for the engineering profession.

The American Council of Engineering Companies is the business association of America’s engineering industry, representing more than 5,200 independent engineering firms and more than 600,000 professionals throughout the United States engaged in the development of America’s transportation, water and energy infrastructure, along with environmental, industrial and other public and private facilities. Founded in 1906 and headquartered in Washington, D.C., ACEC is a national federation of 52 state and regional organizations.


Sandia National Laboratories again has been recognized by Forbes as one of the 500 Best Large Employers 2021. Sandia also won the distinction in 2017 and again in 2019, shortly after garnering a separate award as one of the magazine’s top workplaces for diversity. Forbes and the market research firm Statista conducted an anonymous survey across all industry sectors to produce the rankings.

About 50,000 employees who work for companies that employ at least 1,000 in their U.S. operations were asked whether they would recommend their employer, based on working conditions, salary and development potential. Surveyors also asked them to nominate organizations other than their own. The final list ranked employers that received the most recommendations. Sandia was the only Department of Energy lab and the only New Mexico-based employer to make the list and joins companies like Honeywell International, Inc., NASA, Intel Corp., Apple, Inc. and Google, Inc.


Las Cruces-based Zia Hatch Chile Company has landed a spot on the Forbes Next 1,000 list — just seven years after being founded by Nate Cotanch. Cotanch started the business after moving to the East Coast and found himself missing the flavors and culture of New Mexico. In addition to supplying restaurants around the nation, Zia Hatch Chile Company offers jarred roasted Hatch chile in both medium and hot, as well as red chile.

Items for consideration for Applause should be typed and sent to Business Outlook, P.O. Drawer J, Albuquerque, N.M. 87103. They can also be e-mailed to

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