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Kennedy Earns Recognition For Distinguished Service
Chad Kennedy pix

The San Joaquin Engineers Council has selected Chad Kennedy to receive the 2018 Distinguished Service Award. Presentation of the award will be at the Council’s 51st annual dinner meeting in February.

The engineering profession is made up of individuals who apply science to the common purpose of life, and is defined as the “profession in which knowledge of mathematical and natural sciences, gained by study, experience, and practice, is applied with judgment to develop ways to utilize, economically, the materials and forces of nature for the benefit of humankind.”

Each year SJEC accepts nominations for the Engineering Profession Distinguished Service Award; these nominees are individuals who have given freely of their time and services for the benefit of the engineering profession and the community. This award is intended to recognize someone who has shown an exceptional dedication and passion through the engineering and allied professions without the expectation of financial reward.

Chad Kennedy is a licensed Landscape Architect, and Director of Landscape Architecture at O’Dell Engineering in Modesto. He is a certified playground safety inspector and an advocate for equal play opportunity. He has designed many socially inclusive playgrounds in the California region, and speaks nationally on the subject. His most recent community project is “The Awesome Spot Playground.” Since 2015, Kennedy has been an integral part of the team of community advocates that are working tirelessly to make this socially inclusive playground a reality. The project is a socially inclusive and sensory integrated play space designed to eliminate social, physical, sensory, and cognitive barriers from play. These barriers, unfortunately, have been a long standing problem for some populations in society including persons with disabilities, individuals on the autism spectrum and those with moderate to severe sensory processing disorders. The Awesome Spot Playground will break down these barriers that traditionally keep children and adults from participating in play with each other.

Kennedy’s fundamental strong work ethic, contributions and passion for using his education to help the community are paramount and define this award. His community work to date is meaningful and respected. SJEC hopes more professionals can strive to do such meaningful and often overlooked types of service projects. This type of work not only benefits humankind, but it benefits communities that share family members with all types of disabilities. Kennedy’s interest in advocacy for persons with disabilities originated from employment at the Center for Persons with Disabilities and from a year-long interdisciplinary disability course he participated in at the Center.

The award will be presented to Kennedy at the San Joaquin Engineers Council Annual Engineer’s Banquet, starting at 5.30 pm on Thursday, Feb. 22 at the University Center on the University of the Pacific Campus in Stockton. The banquet is held during Engineer’s Week, a nationwide event recognizing the works and contributions of the engineering profession.

Go to or contact Larry Test, 209-948-2081, for event information and reservations.


SJEC represents the engineering community in San Joaquin and eight other neighboring counties and has awarded over $100,000 in scholarships to needy graduating high school seniors, promoting the engineering profession.