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Stephen Gambrell

Stephen Gambrell

Senior Advisor
office: 901.523.1123
fax: 901.523.7472

Stephen has been solving water challenges across the U.S. for more than 33 years.

On the ground and in the political arena, he listens, observes, evaluates and engages in discussions on all aspects of water management and solutions. Stephen was directly involved with implementing strategies and executing plans during and after the 2012-13 drought and the record 2011 flood on the Mississippi River, as well as the devastating 2005 hurricanes (Katrina and Rita). His keen interest in water has taken him to more than 24 countries to speak and participate in water dialogues, from large-scale conferences to public and private venues.

Currently, Stephen also serves as executive vice president of the Mississippi Valley Flood Control Association. Previously, he was director of the Mississippi River Commission (MRC) for 16 years, acting as principal advisor to the commission on administrative, technical and legislative matters and managing commission meetings, hearings and river inspection trips. Stephen advised on policy, regulations and management principles relating to the strategy and functions of the commission and Corps of Engineers teams across the Mississippi River watershed (41% of the contiguous United States).

Prior to the MRC, Stephen was the executive assistant/project manager and engineer for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Vicksburg District. As a high-ranking civilian within the division, he handled executive and managerial leadership and business development duties, as well as policy and direction for a multibillion-dollar construction program.

His career includes construction project management of locks, dams and related water resources on the J. Bennett Johnston Waterway, Louisiana, for the Vicksburg District and construction engineering with the Corps of Engineers at Fort Bragg, North Carolina; Elberton, Hartwell and Savannah, Georgia; and Anderson, South Carolina.




  • Arkansas Traveler Commission by Gov Hutchinson of Arkansas 2015 and Gov Huckabee 2002
  • Corps of Engineers Achievement Medals for Civilian Service, 1999, 1998
  • Corps of Engineers Commanders Award for Civilian Service, 2000
  • Corps of Engineers Superior Civilian Service Award, 2008 by BG Robert Crear
  • Kentucky Colonel Commission by Gov Beshear, 2011
  • Corps of Engineers Meritorious Civilian Service Awards, 2010 by LTG Van Antwerp and 2015 by LTG Bostick
  • Chairman’s Award, Bayou Meto Water Management District of Arkansas, 2014
  • Army Engineer Association, The Silver Order of de Fleury Medal for Inspirational Leadership, 2015   


  • Senior Executive Fellow, Harvard
  • B.S.C.E., Clemson University

Professional Associations and Memberships

  • American Society of Civil Engineers, key congressional contact and member, 1983-present 
  • Society of American Military Engineers, Regional Vice President for regions of Memphis, Tennessee; New Orleans/Shreveport/Bossier City, Louisiana; Gulf Coast, Mississippi