Dr. Emmett A Sumner III is Recipient of 2009 Robert J. Dexter Memorial Lecture

WASHINGTON, D.C., Sept. 22, 2009 – The AISI Steel Market Development Institute (SMDI) Steel Bridge Task Force and the AASHTO (American Association of State and Highway Transportation Officials) Technical Committee for Structural Steel Design have named Emmett A. Sumner III, Ph.D. as the recipient of the 2009 Robert J. Dexter Memorial Lecture. The program was instituted in 2005 in memory of Robert J. Dexter, an associate professor of civil engineering at the University of Minnesota, who was an internationally recognized expert on steel fracture and fatigue problems.

The Robert J. Dexter Memorial Lecture program provides an opportunity for an individual early in his/her career in structural engineering to present a lecture on his/her steel bridge activities to the  Steel Bridge Task Force and to participate in its semiannual three-day meeting. The Steel Bridge Task Force is made up of the United States’ leading steel bridge experts.

Dr. Sumner is an assistant professor of civil engineering and the technical director of the Constructed Facilities Laboratory at North Carolina State University in Raleigh. His presentation, which was recently delivered to the Steel Bridge Task Force in Baltimore, Maryland, was on “Lateral Flange Bending Research of Skewed Steel Bridge Girders.” Sumner’s research concentrates on the analysis, design, construction and performance of steel bridge and building structures. He has particular interest in the analysis and design of steel connections, the behavior and design of cold-formed steel structures, the strengthening and repair of steel structures with fiber-reinforced polymer materials, the behavior and design of steel bridge structures, and the analysis and design of temporary falsework systems for bridge construction.  

Dr. Sumner earned his Bachelor of Science degree in civil engineering from the University of North Carolina at Charlotte in 1993; his Master of Science degree in Civil Engineering from Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University (Virginia Tech) in 1995; and his doctorate in civil engineering from Virginia Tech in 2003. He is a member of the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) and the American Institute of Steel Construction (AISC). He is a licensed Professional Engineer in Virginia.

Alex Wilson, manager, customer technical services at ArcelorMittal USA and chairman of the Steel Bridge Task Force, said: “Like Robert Dexter, Dr. Sumner is committed to finding practical solutions to complicated steel bridge design problems. He has already made a significant contribution to steel bridge design research, and we look forward to working with him in the years ahead.”
“The Robert J. Dexter Memorial Lecture program has been very successful in identifying and acknowledging young bridge design talent. It provides a platform for these young engineers to build on their research and develop long-term steel bridge design solutions that can be transferred to the marketplace,” Robert J. Wills, P.E., vice president of construction market development for AISI’s Steel Market Development, said.

Honorees of the Robert J. Dexter Memorial Lecture are selected on an annual basis and chosen based on recommendations from the members of the Steel Bridge Task Force. The award was not presented in 2008. Previous recipients include:

  • Jennifer Righman McConnell, Ph.D, assistant professor in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at the University of Delaware (2007),
  • Reagan Herman, Ph.D., assistant professor in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at the University of Houston (2006); and
  • Robert J. Connor, assistant professor of civil engineering at Purdue University (2005).
AISI’s Steel Market Development Institute Steel Bridge Task Force was formed more than 40 years ago to coordinate research that establishes safe, cost-effective steel bridges and to implement these developments into steel bridge design codes, specifically the AASHTO design codes. Its members include steel producers, steel fabricators, the AASHTO Technical Committee for Structural Steel Design, university faculty, consultants and representatives from the Federal Highway Administration and National Steel Bridge Alliance.

The work of the Steel Bridge Task Force is conducted under the Construction Market Council of AISI’s Steel Market Development Institute. The SMDI oversees the industry’s investment in advancing the case for steel in the marketplace as the preferred material of choice. Investor companies of the Construction Market Council include:

  • ArcelorMittal USA
  • ArcelorMittal Dofasco
  • Nucor Corporation
  • Severstal North America, Inc.
  • SSAB North American Division
  • Steelscape, Inc.
  • United States Steel Corporation
  • USS-POSCO Industries

AISI serves as the voice of the North American steel industry in the public policy arena and plays a lead role in the development and application of new steels and steelmaking technology. AISI is comprised of 24 member companies, including integrated and electric furnace steelmakers, and 138 associate and affiliate members who are suppliers to or customers of the steel industry. AISI’s member companies represent over 75 percent of both U.S. and North American steel capacity. For more news about steel and its applications, visit www.smdisteel.org

Contact:
Debbie Bennett
Manager, Communications
Construction Market
Steel Market Development Institute
Tel: 202.452.7179