Marc Edwards, professor of the civil and environmental engineering in the College of Engineering at Virginia Tech, has been reappointed the Charles P. Lunsford Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering by Virginia Tech President Timothy D. Sands and Executive Vice President and Provost Thanassis Rikakis.

The Charles P. Lunsford Professorship was established in 1976 by Charles P. Lunsford II of C.L. Lunsford Sons & Izard Inc., of Roanoke, to recognize and reward an outstanding faculty member in the College of Engineering's Charles Edward Via Jr. Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering.

Edwards has held the Lunsford Professorship since 2004.

When he was first appointed as the Charles P. Lunsford Professor, Edwards was described by Charles O'Melia of the National Academy of Engineering as being "clearly among the best academic researchers nationally and internationally who addresses current and emerging issues in potable water treatment . . . and is among the world's leading experts in the causes and control of copper and lead erosion."

It goes without saying that Edwards has lived up to those expectations.

Among his many honors, Edwards received the H.P. Eddy Award from the Water Pollution Control Federation, a National Science Foundation Presidential Faculty Fellowship from the White House, and a Walter L. Huber Civil Engineering Research Prize from the American Society of Civil Engineers.

He was also awarded the State of Virginia Outstanding Faculty Award in 2006, a MacArthur Fellowship in 2008, and the Praxis Award in Professional Ethics from Villanova University in 2010.

His paper on lead poisoning of children in Washington, D.C., due to elevated lead in drinking water, was judged the outstanding science paper in Environmental Science and Technology in 2010.

In 2013, Edwards was just the ninth recipient in a quarter century of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers Carl Barus Award for Outstanding Service in the Public Interest for "courageously defending the public interest at great personal risk."

In 2016, Edwards was named among the most influential people in the world by both Fortune and Time magazine.

In the classroom, Edwards excels. More than two dozen of his students have won prestigious awards, including the Wolman and Lars Fellowships, which are given annually to only one student in the United States; and American Water Works Association Awards for the outstanding master's degree and Ph.D. dissertations in the nation.

A graduate level class that he co-developed on Engineering Ethics has received an XCaliber certificate and was recognized as an outstanding ethics education exemplar by the National Academy of Engineering.

Edwards has received approximately $10 million in external research grants, has written 185 peer-reviewed publications, and is currently serving on the Flint Water Crisis Disaster Recovery task force.

His work in Flint, Michigan has been well documented. The Edwards-led Flint Water Study Team received Virginia Tech's Alumni Award for Outreach Excellence 2016.

He received his bachelor's degree from the State University of New York at Buffalo and a master's degree and Ph.D. from the University of Washington.

Share this story