Roberto Tomas Leon, Ph.D., P.E., F.SEI, Dist.M.ASCE, a professor of structural engineering specializing in seismic design of connections and structural systems, composite floor systems, and steel-concrete composite structures, 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.
Leon’s engineering research centers on dynamic behavior and design of composite and hybrid steel concrete structures, composite action in beam-slab systems, bolted connections, composite columns and partially restrained composite frames. His research uses a combination of testing of full-scale and model structures, field instrumentation of structures and advanced modelling.
Among the recognitions for his work from ASCE are the Norman Medal in 2000, the State-of-the-Art Civil Engineering Award in 1996 and 2000, and the Huber Prize. He also received the AISC T.R. Higgins Lectureship Award from the American Institute of Steel Construction in 1993.
Leon served as president of the Board of Governors of the Structural Engineering Institute (SEI) of ASCE, and he has been an active member of many of the technical committees of ASCE, ACI, EERI, NEES, BSSC, CUREE, and SSRC. He was chair of the Executive Committee of the Technical Activities Division of the Structural Engineering Institute (TAD/SEI), president of the Consortium of Universities for Research in Earthquake Engineering (CUREE), president of the Network for Earthquake Engineering Simulation, and president of the Applied Technology Council (ATC).
Leon currently serves as the David H. Burrows Professor of Construction Engineering at the Charles C. Via Department of Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University (Virginia Tech), in Blacksburg, Virginia.
He earned his bachelor of science degree in civil engineering from the University of Massachusetts Amherst, his master of science in civil engineering from Stanford University, and his Ph.D. from the University of Texas at Austin. He is the coauthor of a book on composite construction and a nontechnical book on bridges and tunnels, and the author or coauthor of more than 100 articles in refereed journals.