Association of Environmental Engineering and Science Professors Names Bill Cooper a Fellow

Professor Bill CooperUC Irvine civil and environmental engineering professor Bill Cooper has been selected by his peers as a Fellow of the Association of Environmental Engineering and Science Professors (AEESP). Cooper served as director of the UCI Urban Water Research Center before taking leave to become director of the National Science Foundation’s Environmental Engineering Program.

“Having been in the field of environmental engineering science since my ‘stint’ in the U.S. Army in the early ‘70s, I am indeed honored by this designation,” says Cooper. “The impact of AEESP is increasing and with sustainability at the heart of many discussions in science and engineering, I see this organization playing a pivotal role in the future.”

AEESP Fellows are chosen based on their accomplishments in environmental engineering research, teaching and professional service. 

With research expertise in water and the environment, Cooper has made many significant contributions to the science and practice of water quality and environmental engineering. During the Vietnam War, he was a captain in the U.S. Army’s Medical Environmental Engineering Research Unit where he was responsible for various research projects addressing air and water pollution. As a civilian, he continued to work in the same unit on research involved with chemical degradation of pesticides, characterization of trace organics in waters and waste waters, and identification of impurities in chemicals for toxicological testing. He also ran the Army’s water reuse program and helped pioneer the first annual Water Reuse Symposium in 1979.

His contributions to the teaching of aquatic chemistry and water treatment through the production of edited and authored books include Chemistry in Water Reuse, Photochemistry of Environmental Aquatic Systems, and Environmental Applications of Ionizing Radiation. Cooper has served on the AEESP Board of Directors, the AEESP Foundation Board of Directors and many advisory boards. He was elected as an AAAS Fellow in 2011 and has organized over 25 international symposia.

His nomination stated: “Over the course of his career, Cooper has reached far beyond chemistry. He has been a steadfast steward of our field through his service. He has had many leadership roles in outreach efforts, but has also been a scientific and technical leader.”

AEESP is made up of professors in academic programs throughout the world who provide education in the sciences and technologies of environmental protection. Founded in 1963, the association currently has 700 members.