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Engineering Professor Robert Traver, PhD, Named Recipient of Environmental and Water Resources Institute Lifetime Achievement Award

Engineering Professor Robert Traver, PhD, Named Recipient of Environmental and Water Resources Institute Lifetime Achievement Award

VILLANOVA, Pa.—Villanova University professor Robert Traver, PhD, PE, D.WRE, F.EWRI, F.ASCE, the Edward A. Daylor Chair in Civil Engineering and director of the Villanova Center for Resilient Water Systems, has been named the recipient of the 2019 Environmental and Water Resources Institute (EWRI) Lifetime Achievement Award. This award is presented to a member of the American Society of Civil Engineers for demonstrating a life-long level of commitment to environmental or water resources engineering through public service, research or education.

With internationally-recognized expertise in urban stormwater management and widespread engagement in related disciplines, Dr. Traver has distinguished himself as a registered professional engineer, a fellow of the American Society of Civil Engineering (ASCE) and EWRI, and a Diplomate of the American Academy of Water Resource Engineers, for which he served as president. Dr. Traver’s D.WRE board certification is the highest, advanced certification for professional engineers dedicated to the water resource engineering profession.

“I am honored by this recognition from my peers in the water resources professional community,” Traver said. “I am also grateful for the past and future support of Villanova, my faculty colleagues, and, of course, our students. Service to and care for the community are our guiding principles as we work to solve our future water challenges.”

Dr. Traver will officially receive the EWRI award during the World Environmental & Water Resources Congress 2019 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, in May 2019.

A member of the Water Resources and Environmental Engineering Program at Villanova since 1988, Dr. Traver currently serves as Director of the Villanova Center for Resilient Water Systems (VCRWS), which joins with government and industry to advance the field of comprehensive stormwater management. In taking the lead with VCRWS, Dr. Traver and his colleagues have transformed the Villanova campus into a living laboratory with on-site experimental projects such as a green roof, rain garden, stormwater wetland, pervious concrete and porous asphalt.

Dr. Traver played a significant role in the Corps of Engineers' investigation of the failure of the New Orleans Hurricane Protection System during Hurricane Katrina as a member of the American Society of Civil Engineers External Panel (ERP). He has previously testified before Congress and the Pennsylvania House of Representatives.

In addition to the EWRI Lifetime Achievement Award, Dr. Traver has received numerous academic and professional honors, including:  

  • The 2016 Villanova University Outstanding Faculty Research Award, which requires the recipient to have an established national and international scholarly reputation in their field.
  • The ASCE 2014 William H. Wisley American Civil Engineer Award “for his leadership of ASCE’s Task Committee on Flood Safety Policies and Practices.” Dr. Traver also edited the Committee’s report, “Flood Risk Management: Call for a National Strategy.”
  • The Outstanding Civilian Service Medal in 2007, the third highest honor the Department of the Army can award a civilian, from the Commanding General of the Unites States Corps of Engineers, for his work on ASCE’s External Review Panel of the Corps investigation of Hurricane Katrina.
  • Serving as a committee member of the National Research Council Committee that authored “Urban Stormwater Management in the United States” (2009)

Dr. Traver remains active in the field, serving as an associate editor of the Journal of Sustainable Water in the Built Environment, which he helped to create, and leading a number of research projects. He also recently visited China where he delivered a keynote speech at the first International Academic Conference on Sponge City Construction.

Visit Dr. Traver’s media expert profile to learn more about his background and accomplishments.

About Villanova University: Since 1842, Villanova University’s Augustinian Catholic intellectual tradition has been the cornerstone of an academic community in which students learn to think critically, act compassionately and succeed while serving others. There are more than 10,000 undergraduate, graduate and law students in the University's six colleges—the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, the Villanova School of Business, the College of Engineering, the M. Louise Fitzpatrick College of Nursing, the College of Professional Studies and the Villanova University Charles Widger School of Law. Ranked among the nation’s top universities, Villanova supports its students’ intellectual growth and prepares them to become ethical leaders who create positive change everywhere life takes them. For more, visit