George Filz, professor of civil and environmental engineering in the College of Engineering at Virginia Tech, has been reappointed the Charles E. Via Jr. Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering by Virginia Tech President Timothy D. Sands and Executive Vice President and Provost Thanassis Rikakis.
The Via Professorship is funded through an endowment established in 1987 by Marion Via Bradley in honor of her late husband to recognize excellence in faculty research.
Filz has held the Via Professorship since 2007.
A member of the Virginia Tech faculty since 1992, Filz's research has led to improved methods to analyze, design, and verify the performance of subsurface barriers for dams, levees, and environmental protection systems. His research in soil improvement and soil-structure interaction has led methods that stabilize hurricane protection systems, dams, and other applications.
Filz has published more than 175 papers and reports since 1992, and he has been principal or co-principal investigator on approximately $10 million in external funding.
He has received numerous regional and national awards from the American Society of Civil Engineers, including the Thomas A. Middlebrooks Award in 2003, the J. James R. Croes Medal in 2006, the Florida Project-of-the-Year Award in 2011, the Wallace Hayward Baker Award in 2016, and the 2016-2017 Cross-USA Lecturer.
In addition, the Transportation Research Board of the National Academies has honored Filz with the 2014 Best Paper Award from the Soil Mechanics Section and the 2015 Best Practice-Ready Paper Award from the Design and Construction Group.
At Virginia Tech, his teaching has been recognized by three Certificates of Teaching Excellence, a Civil and Environmental Engineering Alumni Teaching Award, a Dean's Award for Excellence in Teaching, and a W.E. Wine Award for Excellence in Teaching.
Filz also serves as director of the Center for Geotechnical Practice and Research, which has 23 corporate and agency members and provides educational, research, and professional opportunities in geotechnical engineering.
Filz received a bachelor's degree from the University of Oregon, a second bachelor's degree and master's degree from Oregon State University, and a Ph.D. from Virginia Tech.