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2012 News Releases



Professor Emeritus Charles Ladd will receive ASCE lifetime achievement award

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The American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) announced that Charles C. Ladd III, the Edmund K. Turner Professor Emeritus of CEE, will receive a 2013 Outstanding Projects and Leaders (OPAL) lifetime achievement award for his contributions to civil engineering education at a black-tie gala in Arlington, Va., next spring.

Ladd, who taught at MIT from 1957 to 2001, was feted this fall by friends, former students and faculty colleagues with a party in October honoring his 80th birthday. CEE geotechnical alumni attending the event at the Concord Country Club included senior lecturer and senior researcher John Germaine S.M. ’80, Sc.D. ’82, Professor Eduardo Kausel S.M. ’72, Sc.D. ’74, lecturer Lucy Jen S.M. ’92, Ph.D. ’98 and Professor Andrew Whittle Sc.D. ’87, now CEE department head. Other current CEE faculty members at the event were Professors Herbert Einstein and Ole Madsen Sc.D. ’70.

After receiving his bachelor’s degree from Bowdoin College, Ladd earned the S.B. in building engineering and construction (1955), the S.M. in civil engineering (1957) and the Sc.D. in soil engineering (1961) from MIT.

He is internationally known for his contributions to the teaching, research and practice of geotechnical engineering. Over the years, he has worked on in situ and laboratory testing, soil stabilization, soft-ground construction, foundation stabilization, risk analysis and offshore engineering. A major focus of his research has been on understanding the behavior of soft cohesive soils and describing that behavior in terms useful to practicing engineers.

He has been active in ASCE committees, was President of the Boston section of the organization, and in addition to the OPAL award, is recipient of numerous ASCE honors, including the Croes Medal, Norman Medal, Terzaghi Lecturer, and Distinguished Member designation. He is a member of the National Academy of Engineering.

During his 80th birthday party, Professor Emeritus Charles Ladd (seated) wears a lei made by Kathy Ayan Alsegaf S.M. ’85, associate director of sustainability at Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu, using circular pieces of paper covered with copies of handwritten lecture notes she took during Ladd’s course.