Geroge D. Clyde


Geroge D. Clyde

Civil Engineer – Agricultural Engineer – Regional Planner – Administrator – Educator

Reclamation – Conservation – Water Power – Management

Twenty-third National Honor Member Nominated by the University of Utah Chapter

Every wearer of the Fraternity’s Transit badge must feel a personal proprietary pride in the career of George Dewey Clyde, which represents, for us, the potential scope of our technological discipline. A member of a pioneer Utah family and a lifetime citizen of Utah, he was born July 21, 1898. He received his bachelor of science degree in 1921 from the Utah State Agricultural College (later the Utah State University) and his master of science degree in 1923 from the University of California.

Upon graduation as a master of science, he accepted appointment as instructor of irrigation and assistant in research at Utah State. He has devoted most of his professional career to the education of youth, working with farmers of the state, seeking the solution of irrigation, drainage, and water supply problems.; he has conducted and administered research in water supply forecasting that is now used throughout the world, and has served on many state and national committees to consider problems in resource development. In rapid succession, he progressed through the grades of associate professor of engineering, associate professor of research, professor of engineering, research professor of irrigation, Dean of Engineering, and Director of the Engineering Experiment Station at Utah State.

Professor Clyde was appointed Chief, Division of Irrigation, Soil Conservation Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture, in 1945, and served until 1953, when he became Director of the Utah State Water and Power Board and Commissioner of Interstate Streams for Utah. In these capacities, he has been adviser to governors and secretaries of agriculture on problems relating to water and its utilization. He directed research programs in this field for departments of agriculture in seventeen western states. He also held many other public service assignments. During the severe drought of 1934, he served as water conservator by special appointment of the government. He was a member of the National Land Grant College Association Committee on Post-War Agriculture Policy, the advisory board of the State Department of Industrial Development and the National Reclamation Association, where he served on many sub-committees to study water supply, usage, and conservation. He was vice-president and director of the Utah Water User’s Association, vice-president of the Colorado River Great Basin Development Association, and vice-chairman of the Upper Colorado River Commission.

In 1957, he won election to the seat of Governor of Utah, where he served two four-year terms with distinction. As governor, he traveled extensively to familiarize himself with irrigation and reclamation projects and their relationship to economic development. He served two terms on the executive committee of the Governor’s Conference, was selected as one of nine governors to visit the Soviet Union and Japan on an agricultural and industrial tour, and was a member of the group of governors who visited Argentina and Brazil on a similar mission.

Governor Clyde was the recipient of honorary doctoral degrees from the Westminster College, the Utah State University, and the University of Utah, and was an honorary member of the American Society of Civil Engineers, the American Society of Agricultural Engineers, the Soil Conservation Society of America, the Utah Society of Professional Engineers, and the American Public Works Association.

After his service as Governor of Utah, he returned to active participation in engineering as an associate in the soils and foundations consulting engineering firm of Woodward, Clyde and Associates, of San Francisco, California, and as president of the firm of Clyde-Criddle-Woodward, Inc., consulting engineers in the area of water resources development and use in Salt Lake City, Utah. During 1965, he completed an assignment for the World Bank as a member of a three-man mission to study the availability and use of water in the Euphrates River Valley in the Middle East.

Governor Clyde was a long-time member of the American Society of Agricultural Engineers (ASAE), the Soil Conservation Society of America, and a life member of the National Reclamation Association. He was also identified with the Kiwanis Club. He joined the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) in 1936, and became a fellow in 1959 and an honorary member in 1963. In October, 1965, at a notable ceremony at Kansas City, Missouri, Governor Clyde received the Civil Government Award from the society. He was an active member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.

He was elected a Chapter Honor Member of the University of Utah chapter of Chi Epsilon, and that chapter’s nomination resulted in his elevation to the grade of twenty-third National Honor Member of the Fraternity, on May 6, 1961. The memorable ceremony and banquet were held at the Ambassador Hotel in Los Angeles, California, concurrently with the initiation of undergraduates into the University of Southern California chapter. A prominent and dynamic speaker, Governor Clyde presented the feature address of the evening, “The Engineer’s Responsibility to Society,” emphasizing the obligation of the engineering profession to take an active part in the civic and governmental affairs of their country.

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