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Alumni Bios

Edward Tolen

2016 Water Leaders Class

Tolen PicwebEdward Tolen was born in Denver, Colorado in March of 1959 to Delbert and Alice Tolen. The fourth of five sons he grew up the son of a gypsy oil refining engineer that insisted on relocating every three to five years and made the circuit of the western United States including Colorado, Kansas, California, Oklahoma, and eventually back to Colorado.

He graduated from Golden High School and tried a semester at the Colorado School of Mines before deciding that he wasn’t quite ready for college. He worked in construction for the next six years before he decided that he would rather use his brain instead of his brawn to make a living. Prior to going back to college he married and he and his wife were blessed with a son and daughter.

He entered the University of Colorado in fall of 1983 in pursuit of a degree in Civil Engineering. He graduated in spring of 1988, being blessed with one more daughter before graduating. His first job took him to Dallas, Texas working for Camp Dresser & McKee (CDM) as a consulting engineer. He spent seven years working for CDM before returning to Colorado to go to work for Ute Water Conservancy District.

He spent 16 years working for Ute Water Conservancy District as a project engineer and the District Engineer. As a project engineer he was responsible for the design of distribution improvements, raw water collection improvements and construction inspection. As the District Engineer he was responsible for a staff of nine, which design engineers, drafters, GIS personnel, and construction inspectors. While at Ute Water, Mr. Tolen returned to college and earned a Masters of Business Administration degree from Mesa State College.

In 2011 he was offered the position as General Manager for the newly formed La Plata Archuleta Water District (LAPLAWD). LAPLAWD was formed to build, operate and maintain a rural domestic water system in southeast La Plata County and eventually a portion of southwest Archuleta County. As Manager Mr. Tolen is responsible for the day-today operation of the organization, coordinating the efforts of consultants, overseeing the bidding of construction projects, and negotiating with other entities to build the system and provide treated water to the District’s customers.

When not working, Mr. Tolen enjoys spending time with his grandchildren, working on his farm, riding his mules, and woodworking.

1750 Humboldt Street, Suite 200
Denver, CO 80218