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2018 Engineering Leader Under 40: Robert Shields, PE, 32

Performance Engineer 3, Lakeland Electric, Lakeland, FL, United States

By McKenzie Burns, Production Coordinator September 13, 2018

Robert Shields, Lakeland ElectricRobert Shields, PE, 32
Performance Engineer 3
Lakeland Electric, Lakeland, FL, United States
BS Mechanical Engineering, University of South Florida
MS Mechanical Engineering, University of South Florida

Robert had in interest in STEM activities from a young age. He is out in the plants and is never afraid to get dirty to troubleshoot a problem or find a solution to an issue. His work on McIntosh Unit 3, allowing it to burn lower quality coals, yet maximize efficiency has helped save 100 jobs and saved ratepayers over $10 million. Bobby began his post college career 2011 as an entry level Performance Engineer and has since become a Performance Engineer 3, and earned his Professional Engineering License.  He received a Process Improvement Award Level 1 and Level 2 for his projects that have saved the rate payers $200k+.  Has led the HRSG Inspection team for the last 5 years and holds a lead role in our coal unit’s boiler inspection team.  He is also responsible for tuning and optimizing the combustion of the boiler post outage.  Bobby has received a Commitment to Excellence VIP Award for his work during the outage work in 2016 and has also received a Leadership VIP Award for work on the Combined Cycle Unit.  In addition, Bobby has attended many User Groups and training seminars to continually help improve processes at work.  Bobby’s work in tuning McIntosh Unit 3 has been key to allowing it to burn lower quality coals. This has resulted in a documented savings exceeding $12 million in fuel costs.

Fun Fact: Bobby enjoys mountain biking and often rides with his 3-year-old son.