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Ballarini honored with ASCE Distinguished Member status
May 19, 2021
By
Stephen Greenwell
Roberto Ballarini, Ph.D., Thomas and Laura Hsu Professor and Department Chairman of Civil and Environmental Engineering, has been elected as a Distinguished Member of the American Society of Civil Engineers.
Roberto Ballarini, Ph.D., Thomas and Laura Hsu Professor and Department Chairman of Civil and Environmental Engineering, has been elected as a Distinguished Member of the American Society of Civil Engineers.

Roberto Ballarini, Thomas and Laura Hsu Professor and Department Chairman of Civil and Environmental Engineering, has been elected as a Distinguished Member of the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE).

Distinguished Membership is the highest honor the organization can bestow, with one class of recipients formally inducted annually. According to ASCE, “A Distinguished Member is a person who has attained eminence in some branch of engineering or in the arts and sciences related thereto, including the fields of engineering education and construction.” Since 1853, only about 700 people have been elected to this elite membership grade.

This year’s class will be inducted in a virtual ceremony on Oct. 6 as part of the ASCE 2021 Convention.

Ballarini joined the Department as Chairman in the Fall of 2014. He previously served as James L. Record Professor and Head of the Department of Civil Engineering at University of Minnesota, Leonard Case Professor of Engineering at Case Western Reserve University, and F.W. Olin Professor of Mechanical Engineering at the Franklin W. Olin College of Engineering. He has made seminal contributions to theoretical, computational and experimental mechanics of materials and structures associated with civil, mechanical, aeronautical, biomedical, chemical and materials engineering.

Ballarini is Past-President of the ASCE Engineering Mechanics Institute (EMI) and currently serves as Editor of the ASCE Journal of Engineering Mechanics. He is recognized as an effective and respected teacher and mentor, as evidenced by being selected by the Case Western Reserve University Graduate Student Senate for the John S. Diekhoff Award for Distinguished Graduate Teaching.

In 2019, EMI awarded him the Raymond D. Mindlin Medal, “For the application of elasticity and fracture mechanics to problems in numerous disciplines and at multiple length scales, and for seminal contributions to experiments for measuring the mechanical properties of materials and structures at the micro- and nano-scales.” The medal is named for the Columbia University professor, who is considered a giant of 20th Century mechanics (and coincidentally was Ballarini’s “academic great-grandfather”).

When asked about this prestigious recognition, Ballarini said, “Whatever I have achieved during my academic career is really a reflection of the talents of my students and collaborators from across the globe. They are a constant and never-ending source of inspiration.”

Ballarini earned his B.E. in Civil Engineering from City College of New York, and his M.S. and Ph.D. from Northwestern University.

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