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Derek E. Boese, PMP, LEED­AP

People to Watch Class of 2015

Photographed by Jeffery Johnston

Executive Director, East Jefferson Levee District

Derek Boese covers a lot of territory at work. He is responsible for over 30 miles of levees, floodwalls, and floodgates along Lake Pontchartrain and the Mississippi River that help keep over 240,000 in Jefferson Parish safe and dry.

With 56 employees under his direct supervision at work and three children at home, ages 10, 12, and 13, Boese also his hands full every day.

Good thing his job comes with one unique and relaxing built­in perk. “The best thing about what I do is getting to drive along the lakefront levee,” he says. “It’s one of the most relaxing feelings around, and I get to do my job while enjoying the scenery.”

Beyond the relaxing drives, Boese says he has always been drawn to work that serves the greater good. “Everything we do impacts people’s daily lives and livelihood, I look for work where there’s a purpose to what I do every day.”

That drive to make an impact started long ago. As Captain and Commander of A Company 299th Engineer Battalion in the Army, Boese led 84 combat engineers from Kuwait through Baghdad to Tikrit during the ground invasion of Iraq in 2003.

With such an impressive background and with so much on his plate at work, it might not come as a surprise that Boese has taken on another massive project that’s wrapping up this year: earning his law degree.

“Personally, I can’t wait to finish law school so I can spend evenings with my family,” he says.




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