Cahill Professor of Civil Engineering, Emeritus, University of California, Berkeley
University Distinguished Professor Emeritus, Department of Civil & Environmental Engineering, Virginia Tech
Donald H. Gray Testimonial
Donald H. Gray
Recollections of a Former PhD Student
The following question was asked of me during a GeoLegends interview to be published in the January/February 2016 issue of GeoStrata.
Q: Is there anyone that has had a significant influence on your career?
My PhD adviser, James Mitchell– a previous GeoLegend interviewee was a significant influence. He was my instructor in some key courses as well as my research supervisor. Professor Mitchell is very open to new ideas and engineering concepts; he explained them clearly as an instructor and applied them successfully in practice. He was definitely an influential mentor.
Jim Mitchell became my PhD research supervisor and agreed to participate in a somewhat unconventional and recondite research topic, namely, Coupled Flow Phenomena in Porous Media. I remember being impressed by his grasp of new concepts/ideas and his ability to incorporate them into mainstream, geotechnical engineering instruction.
We subsequently participated jointly in various research initiatives and symposia. Professor Mitchell has been recognized widely for his teaching skills, engineering accomplishments, and administrative ability. Further-more, he has always been gracious to and supportive of his former PhD students.