Rick Van Klaveren, a graduate of Cheyenne Central High School, began his career with the USDA Soil Conservation Service, now the National Resource Conservation Service (NRCS), following completion of the MS degree. In 1987, as NRCS Research liaison at Washington State University, he completed a PhD in Engineering Science. During his career with NRCS, Rick has provided engineering expertise and leadership in responsible positions in water quality and management, erosion control, total resource management, and management of technical staff.
He served as Wyoming State Irrigation Engineer, Montana State Conservation Engineer, National Irrigation Engineer, Head of Western States Engineering Staff, Western Regional Conservation Engineer, and Director of NRCS Conservation Engineering Division. Rick has been recognized, both nationally and internationally, for expertise in irrigation and conservation projects. He provided leadership in the formulation of national conservation and environmental policy as well as developing the NRCS National Engineering Design Center. He has received numerous awards including the National Society of Professional Engineers SCS Engineer of the Year Award, Senior Executive Service Superior Performance Award, and the USDA Certificate of Merit.