Cathy (Kuchta) Leslie

Cathy Leslie
  • BS Civil Engineering 1983
Catherine Leslie '83 has an open hand and an open heart these days. Leslie, whose degree is in civil engineering, is president and executive director of EWB-USA, a job that wears her out, but she wouldn't trade it for the world. The volunteer work takes about twenty hours per week on top of her regular employment. "I get tired," she says, "but I'm not sorry I'm doing it in the least. I love it."

EWB-USA began modestly enough in 2000 when a group of Colorado college students in a practical applications class traveled to Belize and built a small rain pump for a village. A wellspring followed: today, roughly four thousand students in two hundred chapters nationwide traverse the world to help people.

Leslie, a Peace Corps veteran from the 1980s, first became involved in EWB in 2002, when she was the mentor for a student group that traveled to Mali to undertake a program for harvesting rainwater. The project proved gratifying, Leslie was hooked, and now she leads the organization, overseeing the day-to-day operations, fund-raising, and lining up new projects.

Leslie, a native of northern Minnesota, is a manager at Tetra Tech, Inc., a large engineering consulting firm in Longmont, Colorado, where EWB-USA is headquartered. read more at

Excerpted from Michigan Tech Magazine, Fall 2006

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