Gwaltney receives top American Society of Civil Engineers award

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Lipscomb University professor Chris Gwaltney has been selected by the American Society of Civil Engineers to receive its 2017 Edmund Friedman Professional Recognition Award.

gwaltney_mugGwaltney, professor and chair of the civil engineering department in Lipscomb’s Raymond B. Jones College of Engineering, was selected to receive the award “for exemplary contributions to the status of the engineering profession, outstanding civil engineering accomplishments and dedication to ethical practice,” said Thomas W. Smith, ASCE executive director. Smith said the selection committee particularly noted Gwaltney’s leadership role in developing Lipscomb’s civil engineering curriculum and preparing it for ABET accreditation.

“This is significant recognition for Professor Gwaltney and is a reflection of his passion for the field of civil engineering and for his dedication to inspiring and training future generations of engineers through this work at Lipscomb University,” said Justin Myrick, dean of Lipscomb’s Raymond B. Jones College of Engineering. “We are very proud of him and proud to have him as a part of our faculty.”

According to the ASCE, the Edmund Friedman Professional Recognition Award is awarded annually to a member of the society who is known for their professional service, has lasting achievement in improving the conditions under which professional engineers serve in public and private practice, have made significant contributions toward the improvement of employment conditions among civil engineers, significant contributions toward improving the professional aspects of civil engineering education, providing professional guidance to students who seek civil engineering as a career and providing professional development of young civil engineers in the formative stages of their careers.

“I am blessed to stroll through this life doing the things I love to do, and honored that someone noticed what I’m doing,” said Gwaltney. “I am so proud when I visit student interns and graduates who are respected, doing well in practice and appreciated by their employers; not only for their technical skills but also their character.”

Gwaltney holds a professional engineering license in Tennessee, Kentucky and Indiana and has over 10 years’ work experience in the geotechnical engineering design and construction industry. His specific areas of interest include earthen dam analyses and design. Gwaltney taught at the University of Evansville prior to coming to Lipscomb and brings more than 25 years of teaching experience to the classroom. He is the 2013 recipient of the ASCE TN Section Peter G. Hoadley Award for Outstanding Engineering Educator and an emeritus member of the Indiana State Board of Registration for Professional Engineers. He holds undergraduate degrees in communication and engineering from the University of Evansville and a Master of Science degree in civil engineering with a focus in geotechnical engineering from the University of Illinois.

ASCE established the award in 1960 to recognize the importance of professional attainment in the advancement of the science and profession of engineering. Gwaltney will be recognized during the ASCE annual convention in New Orleans in October.

Founded in 2000, Lipscomb University’s Raymond B. Jones College of Engineering was recently named one of the best Christian-based engineering programs in Tennessee as well as No. 6 in the nation in a survey by Christian Universities Online. The college provides students the opportunity to prepare for an engineering career in an educational environment that also encourages Christian character and service.  The college offers ABET-accredited undergraduate degrees in civil engineering, electrical and computer engineering, and mechanical engineering.

As an outgrowth of over 40 volunteer mission projects in Central America since 2004, the Peugeot Center for Engineering Service was created by the college in 2014.  Through the Peugeot Center, Lipscomb’s engineering program is challenging its students and alumni to use their engineering education to help others for the betterment of society.   Nearly 300 spots have been made available for students to carry out ministry support, disaster relief and community development in Honduras, Guatemala and the Dominican Republic.  Engineering faculty, alumni and students recently completed a 104-foot-long pedestrian bridge in San Esteban, Honduras, to connect two schools separated by a very busy highway that elementary and middle school students must cross daily.

Want to know more about Lipscomb University’s Raymond B. Jones College of Engineering? Visit 

Send Dr. Gwaltney a note of congratulations!