Minutes of the USUCGER Board Meeting
August 6, 2000, Denver Marriott Tech Center

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Sunday Aug. 6, 2000; evening from 7 to 11 p.m. in the Bluebell Room.
Denver Marriott Tech Center, 4900 South Syracuse St.

MEETING WAS OPENED AT 7 p.m. by President Paul W. Mayne

1. Treasurer's Report - Kyle Rollins

        1.1  At the time of the meeting, we had a Bank Account Balance of $24,739 and NSF Grant Balance of $23,500, giving a total of $48,239.  The expenditures for GeoCouncil dues, Atlanta meeting expenses, Charlotte meeting expenses, Amherst travel, website, award plaques, totalled $6,619. 

        1.2.  New member universities include:  Villanova University (Prof. Andrea Weiker) and New Mexico State (Dr. Khaled Sobhan).   Later in the year, Molly Gribb of Boise State joined up too.

2. USUCGER Activities: Paul

        2.1. USUCGER Awards Given; USUCGER Awards were presented during the plenary opening ASCE luncheon event on August 4th to S. Scot Litke for Research Investment and to Prof. Roman D. Hyrciw for Service to USUCGER.  Possible new candidates for USUCGER awards were discussed and Dr. Cliff Astill of NSF was selected to receive an upcoming 2001 award.   We also discussed the possibility of naming the awards in honor of past leaders in our field, although a consensus on this was not reached.
        2.2. Bulletin and mailing (Status).  Paul & Chuck were designing a USUCGER postcard that directed the recipient to our new website address.  Details on the website are given below.
        2.3  Need to have short articles in ASCE GeoStrata and Geotechnical News, particular mention of the USUCGER awards.  Paul composed these summaries that were sent to Molly Gribb, co-editor, and B. Muhunthan, news correspondent, respectively.
        2.4   OPAL Awards.  We discussed the opportunity for resubmission of Bob Holtz for nomination to ASCE in Fall of 2000.

3.    PLANS FOR GEOTECH PhD Workshop at TRB.  Deborah Goodings described the agenda for presentations by graduating doctoral students in geotechnical engineering at several sessions during upcoming TRB meeting in January 2001.  Travel costs would be incurred by participants and advisors would confirm the participation. A hospitality event was planned following the technical sessions.

4.0 REPORT ON NEW WEBSITE: www.usucger.org - Boris Jeremic/Webmaster. 

        Operation & Updating & Upgrading.  The combining of the UMICH site + the Bulletin Board from LSU entailed quite a bit of work, but now successful.  Boris purchased the name so that an official website address was secured for the organization.

        4.1 Recommendation: An archive of USUCGER email list postings might be useful. See example at:


        4.2  Discussion on wanting to open emailing for any geotech job was shelved as being a high-maintenance task that is beyond our capabilities or interest at this time.

5.0.    Future & Direction of NGES under the GeoCouncil - Meeting held at GeoAmherst (April 2000) - Paul discussed that Peter Smeallie had secured approx. $40k from NSF to have a workshop on this topic.  (In spring of 2001, the NGES meeting was held in Colorado Springs and attended by USUCGER Board Members Kyle Rollins & Chuck Shackleford).

6.0   Membership Drive. Since we would have more power/respect in larger numbers, the postcard would be used in a low-key marketing campaign to attract non-member geotechs to join USUCGER.

7.0   NSF Business - Reported & Overview by Rick Fragaszy:
        7.1    At NSF, two geotech programs run by R. Fragaszy and Cliff Astill, both with approx. $4M budget each.
        7.2     Annual awards average about $69,191 for 2.7-year durations.
        7.3     The Small Grants for Exploratory Research are up to $100k/year
        7.4     NSF Workshops are averaging about $40k to $50k each
        7.5     CAREER Awards are well-received and provide $75k/year for 5 years.  An overview article being prepared by Prof. Youseff Hashash of UIUC and Dr. Fragaszy on the CAREER Award Program for publication.
        7.6     NSF encouraging supplementary REU awards to undergrads to Research Programs already funded by NSF.

8.0     Future Business:
        8.1     We need discussion on the Vision & Mission of USUCGER and where we can make an impact for the future of geotechnical research. This might be best handled in open forum at upcoming general USUCGER meeting.  Possiblility to hold general meeting at next G-I specialty conference in Blacksburg in June of 2001.
        8.2     Plans to hold next USUCGER Workshop.  Theme again to focus on young untenured faculty (YUF) and provide direction & mentoring to get them through the academic system.

Meeting was adjoined at approx. 9:45 p.m.

Reported by P.W. Mayne

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