William R. Knocke, the W.C. English Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering, has joined the administrative team in the Office of the Vice President for Research at Virginia Tech as associate vice president for research programs.
The position will provide academic leadership, administrative support, and facilitation to the scholarly activities of the faculty, students, and staff as well as the organized research programs, centers, and institutes of the university at all levels and locations. Knocke will be a repository for information on the university research strengths, partner with institutes and centers on governance matters, represent the Office for Research in intellectual property matters, and serve as policy advocate of the office and information provider to the university community.
“This is an important position on the team that supports the faculty as it furthers the university's discovery and scholarly missions,” said Vice President for Research Robert Walters. “Bill's leadership and research experience will be valuable to this office’s emphasis on helping faculty members, centers, and institutes compete for and manage large, interdisciplinary projects.”
"I was delighted to receive the call from Bob Walters offering the opportunity to join the Office of the Vice President for Research," said Knocke. "I look forward to working with the leadership team that Bob has in place, and to finding ways in which I can contribute to the research mission of our faculty and students within the university."
Knocke, who joined Virginia Tech in 1979, was head of the Charles E. Via, Jr. Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering from 1995 to 2009, during which time U.S. News and World Report ranked it among the top 10 civil engineering programs at both the graduate and undergraduate levels. External research funding quadrupled under Knocke’s leadership.
His recent honors include being elected a fellow of the America Society of Civil Engineers, named the 2008 Engineer of the Year of the Virginia Section of the America Society of Civil Engineers, and receiving the 2009 Excellence in Civil Engineering Education Leadership Award from the society. His recent service includes organizing the Virginia Tech Department Heads Council and Council Executive Committee, and serving as chair in 2007-08. He was a member of the internal advisory board of the Myers-Lawson School of Construction, 2007-09; is an external member of the geosciences review team; a member of the Dean of Engineering five-year review team; and a member of the University Threat Assessment Team.
A professional engineer, licensed by the Commonwealth of Virginia, Knocke's research focus has been on the physical and chemical treatment of water and wastewater, chemistry of aquatic systems, sludge treatment and disposal, and hazardous waste assessment and treatment.
Knocke's Bachelor of Science, Master of Science and Ph.D. are in civil engineering from the University of Missouri, with a concentration in environmental engineering.