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2009 Lawson Lecture: Chris Poland, Degenkolb Engineers

Chris D. Poland, SE, FSEAOC


Chris Poland, Chairman and CEO of Degenkolb Engineers, has been a licensed structural engineer for over 30 years. His project portfolio features new design work, seismic analysis and strengthening of existing buildings, structural failure analysis, and historic preservation. As an internationally recognized authority on earthquake engineering, Mr. Poland routinely participates in policy-changing research projects sponsored by the NSF, USGS, NIST and FEMA. His research and leadership have contributed to the development of federal standards for seismic evaluation. He is chair of the ASCE Standards Committee on Seismic Rehabilitation, and led the effort to produce ASCE Standards 31 and 41. Mr. Poland also regularly publishes technical papers, and presents his findings in professional forums.

Photo of Chris Poland.

Mr. Poland plays an active role in advancing the practice of structural engineering. Public advocacy and participation in professional associations are some of the means he uses to encourage progress. He also leads some of the national advisory committees that oversee earthquake engineering programs, currently serving as chair of NEHRP's newly formed Advisory Committee on Earthquake Hazards Reduction (ACEHR). In 2006, Mr. Poland received the Alfred E. Alquist award from the California Earthquake Safety Foundation.

Mr. Poland is a member of the San Francisco Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors and a member of the Board of Directors of SPUR - the San Francisco Planning and Urban Research Association. Additionally he serves in SPUR's Resilient City Initative as chair of the Seismic Hazard Mitigation Taskforce.
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