ROSEMONT -- Christopher B. Burke has been elected to the National Academy of Engineering, the premier engineering organization in the country and part of The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine. Election to the NAE is highly selective and is commonly regarded as one of the highest professional honors an engineer can achieve.
Over a 38-year career, Burke has established himself as a leader in the engineering profession, academia and community involvement. In electing him to the Class of 2021, the NAE recognized Burke's "leadership in executing complex water resources projects and service to the engineering community."
Burke is the CEO of Rosemont-based Christopher B. Burke Engineering Ltd., a consulting engineering and surveying firm that he founded in 1986 after earning his doctorate from Purdue University. Under his 34 years of leadership, Burke grew the firm from a one-man office to $100 million in annual revenue and created The Burke Group, a consortium of engineering consulting companies with more than 400 employees in offices across Illinois and Indiana.
Christopher B. Burke Engineering has solved complex infrastructure problems for hundreds of municipal and private clients. The company's water resources team, guided by Burke, has completed more than 1,700 water-related projects and have earned the reputation as a leader in water resources engineering.
Outside of his work at the firm, Burke has helped guide and grow the engineering field, chairing all the preeminent professional societies in Illinois, including the Illinois section of the American Society of Civil Engineers, the Illinois chapter of American Council of Engineering Companies and the Western Society of Engineers.
For the last 20 years, Burke has served as a professor of practice at the University of Illinois Chicago, foregoing his salary for UIC to fund scholarships for engineering students. In addition to teaching, Burke serves on UIC's Civil Engineering and Engineering Deans committees.
"Not only has Chris taught at UIC for almost two decades, he has also helped support the next generation of engineers by hiring nearly 100 UIC students as full-time employees and interns at CBBEL," said Dr. Peter Nelson, dean of engineering at University of Illinois Chicago. "We're fortunate and proud to have Chris on the faculty at UIC and congratulate him on this well-deserved honor."
At his alma mater, Purdue University, Burke chaired the President's Council, the Civil Engineer Advisory Council and the recently completed, universitywide Ever True capital campaign.