Jeff Russell (PhD, PE, F NSPE, Dist. M.ASCE., National Academy of Construction) is the Vice Provost for Lifelong Learning and Dean of the Division of Continuing Studies at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. In his role as Vice Provost, he is striving to make UW-Madison a global leader in the service of lifelong learners. When he came to Continuing Studies in 2011, he brought 25 years’ experience as an educator and department chair to the division.
Jeff first joined UW-Madison’s faculty in 1989 as an assistant professor in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, where he co-founded the Construction Engineering and Management Program and developed the construction curriculum. In addition, he has authored and co-authored a myriad of papers on the subject of educating civil engineers. His body of work demonstrates his commitment to using emerging technology in the classroom to prepare the next generation of engineers and other students for the challenges of the future.
Jeff was recently honored for his career in education as 1 of 5 Outstanding Projects and Leaders (OPAL) Lifetime Achievement Award winners for 2014 by the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE).
The award, which recognizes Jeff’s extraordinary contributions to civil engineering throughout his 25-year career, was presented during ASCE’s annual OPAL Gala in Arlington, Virginia.
“Jeffrey is an articulate and innovative leader, who inspires students and demonstrates the importance of embracing technology and higher standards in civil engineering education,” said Randall S. Over, president of ASCE.
Jeff is no stranger to Lifetime Achievement Awards, as he was also honored by University colleagues at the 15th Annual Construction Club Banquet. The presenter, who was taught, advised, and mentored by Dr Russell, had this to say: "I’m honored to introduce our next recipient, who is receiving this award tonight not only for his achievements within the construction industry, but under special consideration from the members of the Construction Club for his personal influence on our education."
Jeff holds a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering from University of Cincinnati, master’s and doctoral degrees from Purdue University, and is a registered professional engineer in Wisconsin.
Jeff grew up in a construction family where his father ran the field operations for a small regional contractor in northeast Ohio. He spent his youth working in construction where he learned the value of hard work, integrity, organization, and leadership. He has always respected the important role labor plays in achieving project success. Strongly influenced by his sister, who has Down syndrome, Jeff values the importance of family, the joys of life, and the appreciation of differences and diversity.