Seattle City (spot)Light: Bob Fuchs, Senior Mechanical Engineer

The Basics

How long have you been at City Light?  23 years  

Division:  Engineering and Technology Operations 

Tell us about your role. What does your job entail?  I support any mechanical-oriented work at our facilities, especially at the hydroelectric plants. While I have done work at the Skagit Hydroelectric Project, I primarily support Boundary Dam and Powerhouse. This includes work on the dam spillway gates, powerhouse generating units, etc. Right now, I am a project mechanical engineer for the series of generator/turbine overhauls on units 51-54 at Boundary. We are rebuilding the generators and overhauling seals etc., on the turbines.

Background

Hometown:  Yakima, Wash., although I have lived in University Place longer now! 

Alma Mater:  Washington State University (WSU), Saint Martins University (SMU) 

Area of study:  Bachelor of science in economics at WSU, bachelor of science in mechanical engineering at SMU 

Tell us about your family: My wife retired from Nordstrom and now watches our grandchildren several days a week. Our daughter, who has a doctorate in physical therapy, works at Swedish Health Services. Her husband works for Seattle Department of Transportation (SDOT). They have a boy (4) and a girl (2).

Just for Fun

What obstacles have you overcome in your career? At the beginning, finding a job with little specific experience was a challenge, followed by working within an organization’s parameters. Essentially, working at Seattle City Light has been great. Still the best job I’ve ever had! 

What has been your favorite project you’ve worked on/have been working on at City Light? Why? I have really enjoyed working on the generating unit overhauls. It involves working with field personnel and several engineering disciplines. The people are all top-notch, and every day is a learning experience! 

What is your favorite local activity? I love road cycling, hiking, outdoor activities, visiting breweries and wineries, and finding great “hole-in-the-wall” places to eat! 

Are you an early bird or a night owl? I’m pretty much more of an early bird. Work starts at Boundary by 6 a.m.! 

If you could live anywhere in the world, where would it be and why? Where we live now. I’ve been several places in the world, lots of nice places to visit. I haven’t found any place as nice as the Pacific Northwest.