Wayne Skaggs

Wayne Skaggs, Ph.D., P.E., is a William Neal Reynolds and Distinguished University Professor of drainage and agricultural water management in Biological and Agricultural Engineering at North Carolina State University. He teaches and conducts research in drainage and subsurface water management engineering.

Dr. R. Wayne Skaggs was born and reared on a farm in eastern Kentucky. He attended the University of Kentucky where he received the BS degree in Agricultural Engineering in 1964 and the M.S. in 1966. He was then employed as a graduate instructor in Agricultural Engineering at Purdue University, where he received the Ph.D in 1970. Dr. Skaggs joined the faculty of the Biological and Agricultural Engineering Department at North Carolina State University in 1970. He was promoted through the ranks to full professor, before being named William Neal Reynolds Professor of Biological and Agricultural Engineering in 1984 and Distinguished University Professor in 1991.

Dr. Skaggs has taught and conducted research in drainage and subsurface water management engineering for the past 37 years. He has served as major professor and directed the thesis work of 24 M.S. and 38 Ph.D graduate students. His work includes the development of the water management model, DRAINMOD, which is widely used by consulting engineers, researchers and government agencies. The model was extended by Skaggs and his students to predict the movement and fate of nitrates, salts and other solutes in the soil profile and is being applied internationally to design and manage drainage and related water management systems. It has also found wide application in modeling the hydrology of wetlands.

Dr. Skaggs received the Hancor Soil and Water Engineering Award in 1986 from ASAE. He is a member of the Overholt Drainage Hall of Fame, a Fellow of the ASAE, and in 1993 was presented The John Deere Gold Medal. He was elected to the National Academy of Engineering in 1991. Dr. Skaggs was presented North Carolina State’s highest Faculty recognition, the Alexander Quarles Holladay Award in 1994 and the University of North Carolina’s highest award, the O. Max Gardner Award, in 1997. In 1997 he was presented the Alexander von Humboldt award for contributions to U.S. agriculture. Dr. Skaggs is a member of the Engineering Hall of Distinction at the University of Kentucky (1994) and a Distinguished Engineering Alumnus at Purdue University (1997). He was presented the Gamma Sigma Delta International Distinguished Achievement in Agriculture Award for 1999. Dr. Skaggs served as President of the ASAE for 2001/2002.

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