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Thom Edgar Receives the ASCE Region 7 2013 Lifetime Achievement Award

July 29, 2013

Congratulations on behalf of the College of Engineering and Applied Science to Dr. Thom Edgar for receiving the ASCE Region 7 2013 Lifetime Achievement Award.  He continues a distinguished career at the University of Wyoming that began in 1981. 

Dr. Edgar’s career is and continues to be characterized by three commitments: a commitment to student welfare, a commitment to education, and a commitment to engineering in the state of Wyoming.  Each of these commitments have been constant over nearly three decades and recognized over the years.  His ASCE Outstanding Faculty Advisor award reflects his commitment to student welfare, his Ellbogen Teaching Award reflects his commitment to education, and his WES Outstanding Engineer award reflects his commitment to Wyoming Engineers.  This focus on students, education, and the engineering community is a legacy that will continue to have impact in the decades to come. 

Dr. Edgar has served as the University of Wyoming ASCE advisor for 29 years, including the last 26 years continuously.  During this tenure he has won many awards, including:

  • ASCE Region 7 Faculty Advisor of the Year (2013 and 2009)
  • ASCE Zone III Faculty Advisor Certificate of Commendation (2002, 2003, 2005) 

Under his supervision, the UW ASCE Student Chapter has also won many awards, including:

  • Certificate of Commendation in 2012, 2011, 2002, and 2001
  • Letter of Honorable Mention in 2013 and 2004
  • Qualifying for the national steel bridge competition in 2010, 2008, 2007, 2002, and 2001

He has hosted four ASCE Student Conferences.

While never a State Section officer, Dr. Edgar has worked closely with and advised the section officers for 25 years.  When continuing education became required for Professional Registration in Wyoming, he helped initiate and coordinated the ASCE/Wyoming Engineering Society (WES) Short Courses for many years starting in 1995.  Proceeds from these workshops have become Scholarships for the Student Chapter Officers and provide ASCE student chapter support.  Dr. Edgar has also served as WES President.

Dr. Edgar has been part of over 20 research projects, has 10 refereed publications and dozens of other publications.  Some highlights from Dr. Edgar's career include:

  • Winning the John P. Ellbogen Meritorious Classroom Teaching Award, the highest teaching award at the University of Wyoming
  • In 2010, he received the Wyoming Engineering Society (WES) President's Outstanding Engineer Award
  • His service to Engineers Without Borders led to a Primary School in Mbita, Kenya being named after himself
  • Honorary member of WES
  • Mortar Board Top Prof four times
  • ASCE Student Chapter Outstanding Faculty Member four times
  • UW Freshman Outstanding Professor

Dr. Edgar has additionally served the nation and state on several committees:

National Committee:

  • Member, ASCE Professor Professional Registration Task Force 2004 (appointed by President Patricia Galloway)

State of Wyoming Committees:

  • President, Wyoming Engineering Society (WES), 2011
  • Vice President, WES, 2010
  • Resolutions Committee, WES, 2000-2009, 2012-Present
  • Scholarship Selection Committee, WES, 1999-Present
  • Scholarship Committee, ACEC Wyoming, 2004-2010

University Committees:

  • University Studies Program Review Task Force, 2011
  • Non-Credit Course and Professional Development Task Force, 2010
  • Moving Forward - #103 Committee on Centralized A/V, 2004-2005
  • Wyoming Student Union Re-Union Committee, 2002 (including permanent 10 poster display in the Student Union)
  • Advisory Board for Center of Teaching Excellence, 2001-2007
  • Excellence in Advising Selection Committee, 2001
  • Dean of Students Search Committee, 2000
  • Associate Provost Search Committee, 1998

College of Engineering and Applied Sciences Committees:

  • ES 1000 Coordinator, 2003-2010
  • ASEE Spring Meeting Committee, 2003-2004
  • Associate Dean Review Committee, 2000-2001
  • College of Engineering and Applied Sciences ABET Committee, 2000-2006

Department of Civil and Architectural Engineering Committees:

  • Faculty Search Committees (2011, 2004, 2004)
  • ABET Committee, 2000-2003
  • Curriculum Committee, 1981-1996, 1999-Present, Chairman, 2002
  • Scholarship Committee, 1990-1996, 1998-Present

In addition to this committee work, some of Dr. Edgar's other professional activities include:

  • Engineers Without Borders (EWB) Technical Mentor, 2009-Present
  • Member, Technical Review Committee, Aquifer Delineation, Laramie/Albany County Environment Assessment Committee
  • State of Wyoming Abandoned Coal Mine Lands Technical Review Committee, 1992-1996
  • Member, Organizing Committee for ASCE Specialty Conference on Hydraulic Fill Structures, 1998
  • Reviewer, ASCE Journal of Geotechnical Engineering, ASAE Transactions, Water Resources Research, ASTM Geotechnical Testing Journal
  • Qualified Through Level II - Myers-Briggs Type Indicator, he has administered and lectured on the MBTI to a significant number of professional, educational and student groups around the state. 

Dr. Edgar has also helped the Civil Engineering Profession by offering several short courses for ASCE and WES.  A list of the courses he has taught over the years includes:

  • 1995  Soil Formation, Index Properties and Classification, Cheyenne, WY
  • 1996  Normal Stresses, Induced Stresses and Water Pressure, Casper, WY
  • 1997  Shear Strength and Design in Soils, Rock Springs, WY
  • 1998  Slope Stability, Sheridan, WY
  • 1999  Retaining Wall Systems, Gillette, WY
  • 2000  Flow in Porous Media, Cheyenne, WY
  • 2002  Swelling Soils, Sheridan, WY
  • 2003  How to Read a Soils Report
  • 2004  Cold and Frozen Soil
  • 2006  Shallow Foundations
  • 2009  Construction Dewatering
  • 2010  Construction Dewatering, Part II

In addition to these, Dr. Edgar has taught the "Aggregate Certification Workshop for Highway Technicians" for the Wyoming DOT three times a year since 1999.

Dr. Edgar’s commitments to student welfare, education, and engineering in the state of Wyoming speak for themselves.  He has established himself a legacy that will continue to have impact in the decades to come.  Congratulations to Dr. Edgar for receiving the ASCE Region 7 2013 Lifetime Achievment Award.   



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