The Hawaii Council of Engineering Societies has named Lara Karamatsu its 2013 Young Engineer of the Year. A Civil Engineer in the Honolulu office of Parsons Brinckerhoff, Karamatsu is one of the firm’s designers for the Honolulu Rail Transit Project.
A licensed professional engineer, Karamatsu is highly involved with local engineering organizations, including the Hawaii Section of the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE). She serves as ASCE Hawaii Section’s Oahu Metropolitan Planning Organization Chair and is the past president of the Younger Member Forum (YMF). Previous ASCE positions include YMF president, YMF treasurer and YMF community service chair.
In addition to her professional work, Karamatsu was recognized for her civic and community activities. She is active with the city and county of Honolulu’s storm water quality branch, through its storm drain marking program, and has worked on behalf of the Special Olympics, MATHCOUNTS program, and the Hawaii Foodbank. She participated in outreach activities by mentoring at the Moanalua & Gus Webling Elementary Schools’ Junior Engineering Nights and has given presentations on engineering at Sacred Hearts Academy, University of Hawaii High School Student Internship Program, and Waipahu High School.
Karamatsu is also involved with the Honolulu Japanese Junior Chamber of Commerce as part of the Young Business Roundtable Committee and volunteers with Iolani School’s Community Action Network and Parsons Brinckerhoff’s Green Team.
In presenting the award, the Hawaii Council of Engineering Societies stated “Ms. Karamatsu’s commitment to the profession, selfless dedication to the community and others, and tremendous work ethic make her a well-deserving recipient of this year’s award.”