Lily Tomkovic

Summary

While Lily came to her career in civil engineering somewhat by happenstance, the skills she brings to her projects are a perfect fit. Honed through her experiences in culinary school and later studying art and design, Lily’s knowledge of movement, patterns, and her appreciation of precision all help her develop innovative solutions. Always adept at science and mathematics, Lily also wanted to incorporate some creativity into her career.  From her home in Healdsburg, Lily cultivated her creative skills – particularly her knife skills to make the perfect dice  – and eventually came to UC Davis after working as a Field Engineer's Assistant at NRCS. At UC Davis, Lily has found an environment where diverse backgrounds come together to develop innovative solutions to some of the largest water resources problems in California. Her current research on the Yolo Bypass is a perfect example of how she uses engineering to translate broad policies into functional solutions. Lily is currently developing a hydrodynamic model of the Yolo Bypass to explore inundation patterns for water management alternatives. These scenarios are, in part, serving Conservation Measure 2 of the Bay Delta Conservation Plan, a comprehensive and complex water management plan to address critical issues in one of the largest estuaries in the country. Lily’s interest in this work goes beyond the technical aspects of how water moves – she knows that solutions are only effective when those affected understand them. Communicating her work not just to other scientists, but to the general public is something Lily keeps in mind as she explores how fundamentals like hydraulics play a role in broader water resources planning.

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