Melissa Ann Lindquist
Lead Engineer, River Forecast Center, Tennessee Valley Authority
Melissa Lindquist is based in Knoxville, Tennessee, and is a Lead Engineer in TVA’s River Forecast Center (RFC). Melissa oversees a shift of engineers and technicians that prepare a multi-day operating plan to balance the competing demands of the Tennessee River. These operating plans include considerations for Flood Control, Navigation, Power Production, Water Supply, Water Quality, and Recreation. The RFC is responsible for developing the hourly schedule for TVA’s 109 conventional hydro-generating units and issuing daily forecasts of reservoir levels and water releases at all TVA river dams. This includes providing special notifications to both internal and external stakeholders during flood control operations, low-flow events, special operations, and other activities impacted by river elevations and flows. Other internal commitments include evaluating cooling water needs for TVA fossil and nuclear plants and working with Dam Safety and Nuclear Power Group on hydrologic and flood-related issues. Melissa has a bachelor’s in civil engineering and a master's in environmental engineering from the University of Tennessee Knoxville. Melissa started her professional career at TVA as a Senior Engineer in the RFC working in a support capacity managing smaller hydrologic routing models and hydropower scheduling. In 2017, Melissa was promoted to Lead Engineer responsible for day-to-day decisions and operations that impact the 41,000 square mile Tennessee River basin. Melissa had been with TVA for over 12 years and her time with the RFC has also included rotational opportunities as the support manager to the RFC and a rotation helping to develop new data and model management software. Melissa has led several stakeholder initiatives including engagements with various local lake user groups, the National Weather Service, and working groups with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.