Academy of Distinguished Alumni

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John A. Wooley

M.S., University of Texas at Austin, 1974 
B.S., University of Texas at Austin, 1972

An outstanding geotechnical engineer, manager, and business developer, John Wooley has over 40 years of technical experience encompassing significant capital investment projects worldwide, both onshore and offshore. He has extensive expertise in the behavior of foundations in rock, expansive clay soils, and Gulf Coast soils, and has a vast project scope – from healthcare facilities to major high rise buildings to pipelines, tunnels, water and wastewater facilities, and industrial plant additions.

Wooley attributes much of his success to his teachers at UT like Roy Olson and fellow alumni with whom he has worked alongside for many years. After receiving his master’s degree from UT, Wooley served in the Air Force as a research officer at the Air Force Weapons Laboratory in Albuquerque, New Mexico for several years modeling group motion response to explosive blast loadings.

Upon exiting the USAF, he began working for McClelland Engineers in Houston in 1976. His assignments included directing offshore vessel, crew and drilling operations in the U.S., Dubai and the United Arab Emirates.

He later worked for Fugro Consultants, Inc., where he rose through the ranks. He eventually served as Executive Vice President and was responsible for the firm’s transportation and infrastructure practice. He has completed major site investigations in the major geologic units spanning Texas, Arkansas, New Mexico and beyond. 

In 2013, Wooley started his own company, Balcones Geotechnical, which is focused on solving complex geotechnical puzzles in Texas. Throughout his career, he has been active in professional organizations that advance engineering practice.

Wooley has dedicated himself to teaching and guiding early career engineers and feels that one of the most fulfilling and fun parts of his job over the second half of his career has been to work with young engineers in a mentorship role. He has also served in advisory roles for the City of Austin, the St. Teresa’s School Board, and the CAEE Department.