David E. Daniel

David Daniel

B.S. C.E., 1972;  M.S. C.E., 1974;  Ph.D. C.E., 1980
Gutsgell Professor of Civil Engineering and Dean of the College of Engineering, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Before moving to Illinois six years ago, Dr. David E. Daniel enjoyed a long, productive career at UT as both a student and a faculty member.  A geotechnical engineer specializing in waste disposal containment systems and the cleanup of contaminated sites, Dr. Daniel received his entire engineering education at UT Austin – with only a three-year break between the M.S. and Ph.D. degree spent working for Woodward-Clyde Consultants in California.

In 1981, following attainment of his doctorate, he joined the UT College of Engineering faculty.  Over the next 15 years, he rose from assistant professor to the position of professor and associate chairman for academic affairs in the Civil Engineering Department.   He accepted a new challenge in 1996, when he relocated to the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign to take the position of professor and head of the Department of Civil Engineering.  He became Dean of the College of Engineering there in 2001.

Dr. Daniels’ professional achievements have garnered him many honors over the years.  He has earned the Norman Medal – the American Society of Civil Engineers’ highest award for research papers published in its journals – and is a two-time winner of the society’s second-highest award, the J. James Croes Medal.  Additionally, he has received the Middlebrooks Award – the society’s highest award for a geotechnical paper.  He was elected to the National Academy of Engineering in 2000.

For three years, he served as editor-in-chief of the Journal of Geotechnical and Geoenvironmental Engineering, and he has served as a member of the National Research Council’s Board on Energy and Environment and on its Geotechnical Board.  His books include Geotechnical Practice for Waste Disposal (editor), Waste Containment Facilities (co-author) and Engineered Covers for Solid Waste Landfills and Abandoned Dumps (co-author).  A staunch advocate of continuing education, he has taught more than 125 courses on waste containment to some 15,000 engineers and scientists 

As Dean of Engineering at Illinois, he counts establishing a bioengineering department and attracting more women and minorities among his top priorities.

OYEG Honorees

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