Two Key Hires Strengthen HDR’s Transportation Equity and Environmental Justice Team

HDR has added two new regional leaders to its transportation equity and environmental justice team: Lee Caragiale in Canada and Mike Washington in the U.S. Central region.

“With the recent U.S. federal executive orders on Equity and Environmental Justice, the objectives set forth in the USDOT Equity Action Plan, and the focus on Environmental Justice in Canada, HDR is well poised to continue to lead the industry in North America in this critical area,” said HDR Transportation Equity Director Cathy LaFata.

Mike Washington
Mike Washington

Washington is an equity and government affairs expert who brings a wealth of knowledge in equity public policy, government relations, environmental justice, public engagement and communication strategies. Working in HDR’s Denver office, he will help clients develop actionable equity policies that provide real-world benefits to their communities.

“I’m excited to work with a broad range of clients in bringing their equity policies to life,” Washington said. “I enjoy helping people know where they can be the most effective in promoting equity and achieving their transportation vision for their community.”

Washington comes to HDR from the office of U.S. Sen. Michael Bennet of Colorado, where he was the deputy state director and director of diversity, equity and inclusion. Washington developed a framework to incorporate equity into all of the senator’s policies — a first for the U.S. Senate.

Lee Caragiale
Lee Caragiale

Caragiale will be a transportation equity lead based in the Toronto office, where she will expand HDR’s transportation equity practice in Canada. With expertise in transportation planning and project evaluation, she will help clients incorporate equity in all stages of a project, including community consultation and navigating funding requirements.

“Our clients across Canada are advancing equity through their transportation projects,” Caragiale said. “I’m excited to shift the focus of transportation planning and delivery to prioritize lowering barriers to economic and society participation for historically marginalized communities.”

She comes to HDR from Metrolinx, where she was, most recently, manager of project planning. Caragiale played an integral role in advancing equity in the organization’s projects, spearheading the expansion of project evaluation and public outreach.