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Dr. Susan E. Burns nominated to fill Georgia Power Company Distinguished Professorship

Dr. Susan E. BurnsDr. Susan Burns has been nominated to fill the Georgia Power Company Distinguished Professorship, CEE Chair Dr. Reginald DesRoches announced the nomination on October 24, a week before it was formally approved by the USG Board of Regents.


“Dr. Burns is an internationally recognized leader in the field of geoenvironmental engineering, known for her research in several areas,” said DesRoches. “She has garnered the respect of both her Georgia Tech colleagues and her peers across the globe.”

The Georgia Power Professorship is awarded to a CEE faculty member whose research and teaching impacts the power industry. It was last held by Dr. Jaehong Kim.

Currently serving as the CEE associate chair for undergraduate programs as well as the leader of the Geosystems Engineering Group, Burns is known as a productive mentor and researcher. Of particular note is her work on engineered materials to treat highway run-off, the productive reuse of waste materials including dredged sediments and biomass fly ash, the interfacial behavior of organic- and inorganic-coated soils, the transport and behavior of microbubbles in otherwise saturated porous media, and the hydraulic conductivity and consolidation properties of fine-grained soils using seismic piezocone penetration testing (SPCPT).

Burns is also the recipient of numerous recognitions, including the National Science Foundation CAREER award, ASCE’s Arthur CasagrandDr. Susan BUrns with one of her graduate studentse Professional Development Award and its Edmund Friedman Young Engineer Award. In 2013, she was elected as an ASCE Fellow. At the University of Virginia, Dr. Burns received the Alumni Board of Trustees Teaching Award, the David Harrison III Award for Undergraduate Advising, and a University Teaching Fellowship.

Burns has served as the president of the United States Universities Council on Geotechnical Education and Research (USUCGER), an organization of approximately 400 geotechnical engineering professors in the US and abroad (www.usucger.org). She is a past member of the National Research Council's (NRC) Standing Committee on Geological and Geotechnical Engineering, and a past member of the NRC's Committee on Assessment of the Performance of Engineered Waste Containment Barriers.