Fast 15: Caleb LeBow

by Michael Tilley ([email protected]) 867 views 

Class of 2023 Caleb LeBow Associate Engineer Olsson, Fayetteville

Caleb Lebow is a Hillbilly. He’s from Ozark. It’s the school’s mascot. But he’s far from the cliche underachieving mountaineer. He has a master’s degree in engineering, has his finger in some of the most significant Northwest Arkansas projects and hiked parts of New Zealand.

Lebow’s career has come somewhat full circle from his first job working with a Fort Smith-based landscape company. It’s where he says he began to enjoy seeing land shaped into something nice based on someone’s vision. But those early days were long.

“I’d get up at 5 in the morning, drive to Fort Smith in the dark, work all day in the hot sun and then drive back,” Lebow said.

Lebow is now an associate engineer with Lincoln, Neb.-based Olsson, a design firm with about 2,000 employees and an office in Fayetteville. After graduating with a bachelor’s degree from the University of Arkansas in 2017, Lebow began working with area engineering companies. He also continued his studies and obtained a master’s degree in 2018. Olsson hired Lebow in June 2022 after deciding he wanted to do less structural engineering and more land and project development.

“I like to say that when I came to Olsson, I traded building up for developing out,” he said. “And it’s nice to drive around (Northwest Arkansas) and look at a building or a sports complex and know I had a part in that.”

Lebow is also a member of the Northwest Arkansas chapter of the Urban Land Institute. It’s a network of people involved in real estate development, and Lebow believes long-term regional success requires smart growth.

“I got an engineering degree to apply math and science to make life better,” he said. “I enjoy helping this area grow, but that needs to be sustainable and not have big problems, you know, 20 or 30 years down the road.”

His passion also includes being a parks commissioner for the city of Goshen. The city is working to maintain and improve the 106-acre Mill Branch Park, which includes the planned development of a disc golf course. He also enjoys wide open spaces. He and his wife Vanessa love to hike, with Glacier National Park in Montana and areas of New Zealand as some of their favorite outdoor spots.