Department of

Civil and Environmental Engineering



Kavanagh Lecture - Biographical Sketch

The Seventeenth Thomas C. Kavanagh Memorial Structural Engineering Lecture

April 1, 2010

7:30 pm

122 Alumni Hall, HUB-Robeson Center

Toward Crack-Free Bridge Decks


David Darwin
Deane E. Ackers Distinguished Professor of Civil, Environmental and Architectural Engineering and
Director of Structural Engineering and Materials Laboratory,
University of Kansas


Dr. David Darwin is the Deane E. Ackers Distinguished Professor of Civil, Environmental, and Architectural Engineering and Director of the Structural Engineering and Materials Laboratory at the University of Kansas, Lawrence, KS. He received a BS in civil engineering and an MS in structural engineering from Cornell University in 1967 and 1968, respectively. Beginning in 1968, he served as an operations officer and unit commander in the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, including one year in Vietnam, and as the Senior Concrete Instructor at the U. S. Army Engineer School. In 1972, he left the service to pursue the PhD degree in civil engineering at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Completing his studies in 1974, Dr. Darwin joined the faculty at the University of Kansas, where he rose in rank from assistant to associate professor in 1977 and to full professor in 1982. He was appointed Ackers Professor in 1990. He is a licensed professional engineer and international consultant.

Dr. Darwin has a wide range of research interests. A pioneer in finite element analysis of reinforced concrete, he has made important contributions in the fields of steel-concrete composite structures, bond between reinforcing steel and concrete, concrete materials, corrosion, and bridge construction. In addition to bond studies, the major thrust of his current work involves methods of improving the durability of bridges, with special emphasis on reducing corrosion of reinforcing steel and cracking in reinforced concrete bridge decks.

Dr. Darwin is a Past President and a Fellow of the American Concrete Institute (ACI) and a Fellow of the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE). He is a past member of the Board of Governors of the Structural Engineering Institute of ASCE and served for 6 years as the Editor of the ASCE Journal of Structural Engineering. He is the co-author of two widely-used textbooks, Concrete and Design of Concrete Structures.

Dr. Darwin’s research, teaching, and professional service have been recognized by over 10 national prizes and medals. He received the Distinguished Alumnus Award from the University of Illinois Civil and Environmental Engineering Alumni Association in 2003 and has been honored for both undergraduate and graduate teaching by students at the University of Kansas. Most recently, Dr. Darwin was recognized in the January 2010 issue of Concrete Construction magazine as one of the five most influential individuals in the concrete industry for 2009.