Distinguished Alumni Awards

William Gene Corley

William Gene Corley
To William Gene Corley for outstanding contributions to the art and science of design of reinforced and prestressed concrete structures and for his extraordinary service to the advacement of the standards of structural engineering practice.

Vice President, Construction Technology Laboratories, Inc., Skokie, Illinois

  • BS, 1958, Civil Engineering, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
  • MS, 1960, Civil Engineering, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
  • PhD, 1961, Civil Engineering, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

W. Gene Corley is recognized as one of the leading experts in structural concrete. As author or coauthor of more than 130 publications, Corley has contributed significantly to the understanding of behavior of reinforced and prestressed concrete structures subjected to dynamic and static loads. His research and work have changed the profession, improved standards, and defined a more rational approach to design for safer and more economical structures.

He began his career designing and developing military bridging with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. In 1964, he took a position with Portland Cement Association, where he directed research projects on prestressed and reinforced concrete and was involved in research leading to the development of design procedures for concrete structures subjected to various load conditions. In 1987, he became vice president of Construction Technology Laboratories. Responsible for resolving challenging problems, he directed investigations of structural failures to determine the causes and to develop procedures for retrofitting concrete structures with design deficiencies or damage. He was principal investigator and leader of the team charged with evaluating truck bomb damage to the Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City in 1995.

Corley's remarkable service record includes a six-year appointment as chairman of Committee 318 of the American Concrete Institute. He is a Fellow of the American Society of Civil Engineers and American Concrete Institute and is active in numerous professional organizations. He became a member of the National Academy of Engineering in 2000. He has received many honors and awards over the years, including the Distinguished Service Award and Best Structural Publication Award from the National Council of Structural Engineers Association in 1999. In addition, Corley has a notable record of public service, including stints as president of the Board of Directors of Association House, Chicago, and chairman for the District School Board Caucus. He also sang for 10 years in the Chicago Symphony Orchestra Chorus, served on the Mid-America Chapter Board of Directors for the American Red Cross, and is a member or the Columbian Society and the Chicago Museum of Science and Industry.

Committed to the University of Illinois, he is a member of the Presidents' Council and served on the Civil Engineering Alumni Association board of directors from 1988 to 1994, taking on responsibilties of president in 1993. He received the Civil Engineering Distinguished Alumnus Award in 1995.

Current as of 2001.