Canadian Consulting Engineer

CCE’s Top 10 Under 40: Courtney Hough

August 19, 2022
By Peter Saunders

She is a group leader for linear capital projects.

Courtney Hough

Photo courtesy Courtney Hough.

This year, for the first time, Canadian Consulting Engineer launched an initiative to recognize up-and-coming consulting engineers across the country. We are now showcasing them on our website, in alphabetical order by surname.

Courtney Hough, 39, is the group leader for linear capital projects at Ainley Group, based at its branch office in Barrie, Ont.

“I was originally drawn to engineering because I enjoy problem solving,” she says. “When I studied environmental engineering at the University of Guelph, I found the field interesting, relevant and dynamic. You’re never working on the same thing every day.”

Her choice of focus was further validated by a summer job involving on-site compaction and material testing for Soil Engineers, a geotechnical firm in Collingwood, Ont.

“I liked working on-site,” she says. “I started at Ainley Group as an engineer-in-training (EIT) right after graduating. I was given the opportunity to see projects through from initiation to completion.”

Many of these projects involved design-build-maintain contracts for road reconstruction, ranging from small sidewalk installations to large-scale road widening and infrastructure improvement programs.

“I like to keep busy both in and out of the office.”

“Over the past five years alone, she has led approximately $75 million worth of road reconstruction projects, including watermains, sanitary and storm sewers and traffic/pedestrian signalization,” says vice-president (VP) and branch manager Tammy Kalimootoo, Hough’s supervisor. “Each project delivered by Courtney is completed with a high level of accuracy and attention to detail. Her design solutions are the result of effective collaborative engagement with key stakeholders, innovative technical workshops with multidisciplinary expertise and extensive knowledge and understanding of local conditions and community needs.”

Along the way, Hough has mentored the firm’s junior staff and risen to her current leadership role. She also lends a hand in the community, volunteering as a certified hockey trainer for a youth program that assists in risk management, both on and off the ice. She participates in the Respect in Sport Activity Leader Program to better understand and respond to issues of bullying, abuse, harassment and discrimination.

“I like to keep busy both in and out of the office,” she says. “My husband and I are very social and active, from networking at corporate golf tournaments to playing hockey and travelling with our two girls. Balance is key.”


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