Academy of Distinguished Alumni

Awtar Singh

Awtar Singh Ph.D., P.E., G.E.

Inducted to the Academy of Distinguished Alumni on

Awtar Singh received his Ph.D. (1966) degree in Civil (Geotechnical) Engineering from the University of California, Berkeley.  He also received his M.S. (1963) in Civil Engineering from the University of Colorado, Boulder, and his B.S. from Punjab Engineering College in India (1949).  After receiving his B.S. degree, Dr. Singh worked on Bhakra Dam, a 700-foot high concrete dam that was one of the highest in the world at that time. This project represented the first application in India of mechanized construction of a large earthwork project. He quickly rose to the position of Executive Engineer and was put in charge of the construction of the hydropower plant for the dam.

After graduating from Berkeley, Dr. Singh served for several years on the Civil Engineering faculty of the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA).  During this period, he authored a number of papers on various geotechnical engineering topics, and he was co-recipient of the 1970 American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) Thomas A. Middlebrooks Award.  In 1972, Dr. Singh co-founded the consulting firm Lockwood-Singh and Associates. Over the years, the firm performed more than 5,000 geotechnical and geological engineering projects, specializing in the investigation, stabilization, and repair of landslides and earthwork construction defects. During his career, he served as an expert witness and testified in several large landslide litigation cases in southern California.

Later in his career, Dr. Singh became involved with philanthropic activities, mostly related to education. He connected his alma mater Punjab Engineering College (PEC) and U.C. Berkeley.  He endowed the Awtar and Teji Singh Fellowship endowment in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering (CEE) at Berkeley.  To date, 14 top students from PEC have attended U.C. Berkeley supported by this endowment. More recently, Dr. Singh has committed to a Graduate Fellowship matching program at Berkeley.  He has also endowed a similar fellowship at the University of Colorado, Boulder in memory of his wife, Teji.  He has also made donations to the Kinnaird College for Women in Lahore, Pakistan for a building fund for graduate school.  Dr. Singh is a member of the Benjamin Ide Wheeler Society at U. C. Berkeley.