Wednesday, July 13, 2011
Reston, Va. — John Breen, Ph.D., P.E., Dist.M.ASCE, NAE, professor emeritus at the University of Texas at Austin and international structural engineer, was recently named a Distinguished Member of the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE). The Society’s highest accolade, active distinguished membership is comprised of approximately only 200 of its 140,000 members worldwide. Breen will be presented the award, in honor of his contributions in reinforced and post-tensioned concrete bridge and building design, for leadership in development of code provisions for loads and structural concrete, and his deep commitment to civil engineering education, on October 20-22, 2011, at ASCE’s Annual Civil Engineering Conference in Memphis, Tenn.
Breen has demonstrated a lifelong commitment to the field of engineering. Deemed the father of segmental bridge technology, he is a world leader in the development of design guides for segmental bridges, slender reinforced concrete columns, and anchorage of reinforcement. Breen is widely known for the addition of structural integrity reinforcement as a requirement in the American Concrete Institute (ACI) Building Code. Serving for 18 years as director of the Ferguson Structural Engineering Laboratory at the University of Texas at Austin, Breen helped to build a renowned staff and developed a worldwide reputation of excellence. His involvement in world class projects includes the Great Belt West Bridge in Denmark, the Second Severn Crossing in England-Wales and the Sunshine Skyway Bridge in the United States.
A distinguished professor at the University of Texas at Austin for more than 50 years, Breen’s commitment to excellence is unsurpassed. Under his guidance, research was conducted that led to improved grouting and the use of robust plastic ducts to ensure long-term durability of post-tensioning tendons in aggressive environments. His research has served as the basis for the development of many chapters of the AAHSTO Guide Specifications for Design and Construction of Segmental Concrete Bridges, for which he was a principal author.
Breen’s accomplishments have been recognized by many organizations. He was elected to the National Academy of Engineering for leadership in the field of reinforced and prestressed concrete research. He is also a member of the Swiss Academy of Engineering and Sciences and was elected to honorary membership in ACI and the American Segmental Bridge Institute. In addition, Breen was awarded six outstanding teaching awards, 12 research and design paper awards and the prestigious Freyssinet Medal. Breen’s distinguished career is supported by his dedication to the field—he has demonstrated an innate ability to lead other engineers as a teacher and mentor to hundreds of students now serving in leadership positions all over the world.
Breen received a bachelor’s degree from Marquette University, a master’s degree from the University of Missouri and his doctoral degree from the University of Texas at Austin. He is a current resident of Austin, Texas.
Founded in 1852, the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) represents more than 140,000 civil engineers worldwide and is America’s oldest national engineering society.