Rafael Luis Bras, Sc.D., P.E., Hon.D.WRE, Dist.M.ASCE, an expert in the field of hydrology, has been honored by ASCE for his contributions as an outstanding leader in the engineering profession by being named to the 2015 Class of Distinguished Members.
Bras’ major areas of work include land-atmosphere interactions and geomorphology. He is considered one of the world’s leading experts in issues of deforestation, global warming, hydrologic and atmospheric modeling, and ecohydrology. Bras has served as a consultant in multiple projects around the world. He is known for combining hydrology with probability and statistics to improve forecasting and risk estimation in civil engineering projects.
In addition to ASCE, Bras has been very active in several professional organizations. He is past president of the Hydrology section of the American Geophysical Union, was a member of its Board of Directors, and is an elected Fellow. Bras is also a Fellow of American Meteorological Society and the American Academy for the Advancement of Science. He was elected to the National Academy of Engineering in 2001, and is a member of the Academy of Arts and Sciences of Puerto Rico, the Mexican National Academies of Engineering and Science. A native of Puerto Rico, Bras is in the Hispanic Engineer National Achievement Award Hall of Fame. His other honors include the ASCE Huber and Freese Awards, NASA’s Public Service Medal, AGU’s Horton and Macelwane Medals, the Clarke Prize, the Drexel Exceptional Achievement Award, and the Guggenheim Fellowship.
Bras is the provost and executive vice-president for Academic Affairs at the Georgia Institute of Technology (GT). He is also a professor in GT’s School of Civil and Environmental Engineering and School of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences. He has published 2 textbooks, more than 210 refereed journal publications, and several hundred other publications and presentations.