Published: Jan. 12, 2023 By

Karl LInden

The Department of Civil, Environmental and Architectural Engineering welcomes Karl Linden as the incoming department chair. 

Linden, a CEAE professor and an associate director of the Mortenson Center in Global Engineering, took the reins January 1 from Professor Rich Regueiro, who served as the interim chair since July.  

“I am really excited to have this opportunity to work with and help elevate our department as a whole,” Linden said. “We have incredible faculty doing important work for society and the planet, and a top-quality staff that is engaged and supportive.”

Linden spent the fall 2022 semester as a Fulbright Canada Research Chair Scholar at St. Mary’s University in Halifax, Nova Scotia, learning about water quality and treatment practices in Atlantic Canada as well as the challenges facing First Nations communities and small systems due to climate and infrastructure resilience. 

Water quality and treatment efforts have been a key focus of Linden’s career. He has made major contributions to the advancement of ultraviolet light systems for disinfection, which are now used by many municipal water systems. He is the author of more than 200 technical papers and was the 2014 Water Reuse Foundation Person of the Year. 

Typically Linden teaches undergraduate courses in Water and Wastewater Treatment, Water and Sanitation in Developing Countries and graduate courses in Water Reuse and Advanced Treatment, but will reduce his teaching load due to taking on his new duties as department chair. 

Linden has been the Mortenson Professor in Sustainable Development since 2015. He served previously as president of the International UV Association from 2013-15 and then president of the Association of Environmental Engineering and Science Professors from 2018-19. He currently serves on the WHO Water Quality Technical Advisory Group and has received numerous awards including the 2013 Pioneer Award in Disinfection and Public Health from the Water Environment Federation; the 2019 AEESP Walter J Weber Jr. Frontier in Research Award;  the 2019 Water Research Foundation Dr. Pankaj Parekh Research Innovation Award; and the 2020 Borchardt-Glysson Water Treatment Innovation Prize.  He was the 2020 National Water Research Institute Clarke Prize Laureate.

Linden received MS and PhD degrees in Civil and Environmental Engineering at the University of California Davis. 

“In my role as chair I am here to support our faculty, staff and students to enable them to achieve their professional goals – their success is our department’s success,” Linden said.  “Equally important is creating a culture where everyone feels valued and part of the CEAE team – faculty, staff and students – and my top goal as chair is to help enable this type of climate. Our continued success will follow from there.”