Saturday, June 23, 2012

MDDF Command Staff Colonel Receives Meritorious Service Award

By CPT (MDDF) Stephen Rice
May 20, 2012

On June 14, 2012 Maryland Defense Force (MDDF) Col. David S. Thaler will receive the Meritorious Service Award from the American Society of Civil Engineers. Col. (MDDF) Thaler is a member of the 121st Engineer Regiment of the Maryland Defense Force and President of D.S. Thaler & Associates, Inc. D.S. Thaler & Associates is a civil and environmental engineering, surveying, landscape architecture and land planning firm that was founded by Col. (MDDF) Thaler over 35 years ago.

As a practitioner, he has designed hundreds of residential, commercial and industrial land development projects throughout the Mid-Atlantic. His firm has created many innovative designs and he invented the “Super Silt Fence” technique which has become an international standard. Col. (MDDF) Thaler’s specialty is managing large, difficult and environmentally complex projects.

Thaler has been an advocate and educator for the land use industry for several years. He has published more than 200 articles and four books on engineering and development topics. In addition, Col. (MDDF) Thaler previously taught storm water engineering at Lehigh University. Most recently he taught at the University of Maryland School of Architecture and at the Johns Hopkins University Carey School of Business. Currently, he presents a program entitled “Thaler on Land Use” at the University of Baltimore School of Law where he serves as a Visiting Scholar.

Col. (MDDF) Thaler has also been very involved in civic affairs. He is a past president of the Maryland Society of Professional Engineers and was the founding president of the Land Development Council of Maryland. Thaler is a fellow of both the National Society of Professional Engineers and the American Society of Professional Engineers. He is also the recipient of many other honors and lifetime achievement awards.

As an engineer within the MDDF, Col. Thaler formed a partnership between the MDDF and the Maryland Society of Professional Engineers. This initiative is called the Maryland Engineering Emergency Response Team. It provides volunteer professional engineering services to support the Maryland National Guard in times of emergency.

Brig. Gen. (MDDF) Brian R. Kelm, the commanding general of the MDDF commented that “Col. Thaler is special in that he is both very technically proficient and he knows how to lead. He is a wonderful asset to the MDDF.“

The Maryland Defense Force (MDDF) is the State’s uniformed volunteer military unit providing professional and technical assistance to the Maryland Military Department. Established in 1917, the MDDF consists of nearly 450 personnel who perform legal, engineering, finance, medical, chaplain, field support and ceremonial services for the State of Maryland. For more information: