“I never thought 20 years could go by so fast,” muses Joe Heaney, founder of Walden Associates. “But it’s been a great 20 years. I’m really proud of Walden–and appreciative of all the people, including our loyal clients, who have contributed along the way to make this possible.”
In 1995, Joe Heaney was an experienced professional environmental engineer at Eder Associates in Locust Valley, NY. He enjoyed working there, and he forged many lasting personal and professional relationships while amassing a great deal of knowledge. But after a few years’ contemplation, Joe recognized what he really wanted was to own and run his own company—where he could bring on young engineers and scientists to mentor while growing a business that provided quality engineering services and was a force for good in the community.
Never comfortable with the status quo, Joe—who is a P.E. and has degrees from both Lafayette and Manhattan Colleges—has greatly expanded Walden’s services over the years. Where it had started as an environmental firm, a full range of additional capabilities, such as Fuel Management, Geographic Information System (GIS), OSHA/Safety Consulting and Stormwater Management have been added. Walden even acquired another company (Shapiro Engineering) this past December to expand into the Solid Waste Management and Air Quality Monitoring arenas. (See a full list of Walden’s services.)
Mr. Heaney is a go-getter away from the office, too. Not one to relax, he has summited the high points of all 50 states, in addition to having scaled many other peaks. Joe is an avid cyclist, scuba diver, horse-back rider and skier.
Committed to teaching and guiding young people, Joe has served as both coach and president of the Oyster Bay/East Norwich Soccer Club. And being a fervent believer in mentoring, he routinely opens Walden’s doors to interns and externs, both on a high school and college level. He is a frequent speaker at local schools, and, for the first time this year, will be sponsoring a scholarship to an outstanding engineering student at Oyster Bay High School.
Joe is also a member of the Hofstra University School of Engineering and Applied Science Advisory Board and has been instrumental in helping Hofstra launch its first-ever six-month co-op program, having hired a civil engineer who will be starting this June.
In that same community-minded vein, when Joe founded Walden, he also established “Walden Day,” a day of service to the community that’s observed each May. Each year, Joe and his employees don their work clothes and volunteer off-site to a group in need. In years past, Walden’s employees have assisted in clean-up efforts in both Breezy Point and the Village of Island Park after Superstorm Sandy. They have cleared and marked trails for the North Shore Land Alliance, and they have performed services for Long Island Cares and Habitat for Humanity. “Walden Day is a day we all look forward to so we can give back to the community,” stated Project Manager Peter Brighton. “It makes me feel good to work for a company that places value on such things.”
This year, Walden will be volunteering at the Waterfront Center, fittingly in the Firm’s hometown of Oyster Bay. The Center is devoted to educating the public on the marine environment while promoting the protection and enjoyment of local waterways. Walden’s staff is gearing up to help prepare the sailboats used in the Center’s youth sailing program, in addition to organizing materials and repainting tables used in their many educational endeavors.
Afterward, everyone will head over to the Sagamore Yacht Club, also in Oyster Bay, to cap off the day in style with a 20th Anniversary dinner. Guests will include many past and present employees who have helped Walden become the successful company that it is today. Here’s to climbing to even greater heights in the next 20 years!