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Russell, Jeffrey

Jeffrey S. Russell, Ph.D., P.E. 

Jeffrey S. Russell is Vice Provost for Lifelong Learning and Dean of Continuing Studies at the University of Wisconsin-Madison (UW). In this role, Dr. Russell is responsible for leading the university’s programs and services for lifelong learners and nontraditional students. Prior to assuming his current position, Dr. Russell served as Professor and Chair in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering (CEE) at the UW. In addition to his position as Vice Provost, Dr. Russell serves as a Professor in the CEE Department, focusing on construction management, innovative project delivery systems, and construction automation and robotics. He received a BS degree in Civil Engineering from the University of Cincinnati and MS and PhD degrees from Purdue University, and is a registered professional engineer in Wisconsin.

Dr. Russell began his academic career in 1989 as an Assistant Professor in the CEE Department.

Over the past 22 years, he has earned a reputation as a leader in education, research, and service to the civil engineering profession through championing diversity, leadership, innovation, and enhanced education for future civil engineers.

He is co-founder of the Construction Engineering and Management program at UW-Madison, one of only 7 programs accredited by ABET, Inc. He has advised over 100 graduate students including 26 Ph.D. students, and served as principal or co-principal investigator for more than $14 million of publicly and privately funded research.

Dr. Russell is a respected researcher, author, and editor. He has published more than 200 technical papers in the areas of contractor failure, prequalification, surety bonds, constructability, automation, maintainability, warranties, and quality control/quality assurance. In addition, he has authored and published two books—Constructor Prequalification (1996) and Surety Bonds for Construction Contracts (2000). Dr. Russell served as editor-in-chief of the ASCE Journal of Management in Engineering (1995-2000) and as founding editor-in-chief of the ASCE publication Leadership and Management in Engineering (2000-2003), during which time he organized special issues on diversity, public policy, career management, globalization, and information technology.

He has been honored with a number of national and regional awards and 9 best paper awards. Dr. Russell’s awards include the National Science Foundation Presidential Young Investigator (1990), American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) Collingwood Prize (1991), ASCE Edmund Friedman Young Engineering Award (1993), ASCE Walter L. Huber Civil Engineering Research Prize (1996), ASCE Thomas Fitch Rowland Prize (1996), Outstanding Researcher of the Construction Industry Institute (2000), ASCE President’s Medal (2003), NSF Presidential Award for Excellence in Science, Mathematics, and Engineering Mentoring (2004), Engineering News Record Newsmaker (1996 and 2005), ASCE William H. Wisely Civil Engineer Award (2005),  National Society of Professional Engineers Engineering Education Excellence Award (2005), Wisconsin Society of Professional Engineers Engineering Educator Award (2007), ASCE Excellence in Civil Engineering Education (ExCEED) Leadership Award in Education (2007), Distinguished Membership of ASCE (2009), Wisconsin Distinguished Service Award ASCE WI section (2009), ASEE George Wadlin Service Award (2010), the Peurifoy Research Award (2010), and the Mentor of the Year Award from the National Society of Professional Engineers. He served on the ASCE Board of Direction (1997-2000), was recently elected to the National Academy of Construction.

Dr. Russell is presently Chair of the ASCE Committee on Academic Prerequisites for Professional Practice. The Committee is charged with defining the future education requirements necessary to practice civil engineering at the professional level. Throughout his career, Dr. Russell has dedicated his efforts to make engineering education more meaningful and more relevant. He has been a consistent advocate for elevating engineering education expectations for tomorrow’s graduates — necessary to better prepare them for the challenges of a complex, interconnected world, and to compete more effectively in the global economy.