Roberto Leon, who will join the Via Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering in the College of Engineering at Virginia Tech as a tenured professor in December 2011, has been named the David H. Burrows Professor in Construction Engineering by the Virginia Tech Board of Visitors.

The David H. Burrows Professorship was established in 1986 through a gift to the Virginia Tech Foundation from Burrows, a 1942 graduate of Virginia Tech. The professorship is awarded to an outstanding professor in construction engineering within the College of Engineering. The professorship is for a five-year period.

Leon is a nationally and internationally recognized faculty member for his research, teaching, and service. He is acknowledged to be one of the leading researchers in the field of steel-concrete composite structures and earthquake engineering. His work has affected numerous national and international design codes.

He has published more than 150 peer-reviewed papers, books, and book chapters, and he has directed or co-directed nearly $7 million of external research funding at Georgia Tech and the University of Minnesota. In addition, he has been part of large, multidisciplinary teams that have collectively conducted over $120 million in research.

Leon is currently president of the Board of Governors for the American Society of Civil Engineer’s Structural Engineering Institute and serves on the American Institute of Steel Construction Committee on Specifications. He is currently serving on the editorial boards of four journals in the field of structural engineering and has chaired or co-chaired the organization and delivery of six international conferences.

The quality of his research has been recognized several times, including his selection by the American Society of Civil Engineers for the Norman Medal and the State-of-the-Art of Civil Engineering Award on two occasions, and his selection to be the 1993 T. R. Higgins Lecturer by the American Institute of Steel Construction.

A dedicated instructor and research advisor, Leon is well respected and sought out as a graduate advisor as reflected by the number of students that he has advised or co-advised. He has advised or co-advised to completion 20 doctoral students, 35 master’s students, and more than 20 undergraduate research students.

Leon received his bachelor’s degree in civil engineering from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst, a master’s degree in structural engineering from Stanford University, and a Ph.D. from the University of Texas at Austin.

Dedicated to its motto, Ut Prosim (That I May Serve), Virginia Tech takes a hands-on, engaging approach to education, preparing scholars to be leaders in their fields and communities. As the commonwealth’s most comprehensive university and its leading research institution, Virginia Tech offers 240 undergraduate and graduate degree programs to more than 31,000 students and manages a research portfolio of $513 million. The university fulfills its land-grant mission of transforming knowledge to practice through technological leadership and by fueling economic growth and job creation locally, regionally, and across Virginia.