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EPA presents medal to Tech engineer for Chesapeake Bay research

By Liz Crumbley

Spectrum Volume 19 Issue 09 - October 24, 1996

Clifford W. Randall, an endowed professor of civil engineering, received the Mathias Medal from U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Carol Browner last week in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania.

The medal, named in honor of former U.S. Sen. Charles "Mac" Mathias of Maryland, recognizes scientists who have made singular contributions to the public good with respect to the Chesapeake Bay and its watershed.

Since the early 1970s, Randall has conducted much of the leading research on the pollution of the bay by nutrients--phosphorus and nitrogen--from wastewater treatment plants and other sources. Randall's work in the area of biological nutrient reduction has been instrumental in reducing phosphorus loading from treatment plants to the bay by 40 percent.

Randall also serves as chair of the Chesapeake Bay Program's Scientific and Technical Advisory Committee, a body of experts that advises the multi-state program on scientific issues.

Randall, the Charles P. Lunsford professor of civil engineering at Tech, has been director of the university's Occoquan Watershed Monitoring Program since 1972 and division leader of the university's Environmental Engineering Program since 1979.

In 1994, Randall received the Governor's Salute to Excellence from the State of Maryland for his efforts to protect and improve the bay.

The Mathias Medal is awarded by the Sea Grant programs of Maryland and Virginia and the Chesapeake Research Consortium. Mathias was instrumental in helping to launch the bay-restoration effort.

The medal was presented to Randall during the annual meeting of the Chesapeake Executive Council, comprised of the governors of Pennsylvania, Maryland and Virginia; the mayor of the District of Columbia; the chair of the Chesapeake Bay Commission; and the EPA administrator.