Leslie E. Robertson

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Leslie E. Robertson
Leslie Earl Robertson

(1928-02-12) February 12, 1928 (age 92)
NationalityUnited States
EducationBS, University of California, Berkeley (1952)
Engineering career
Discipline Structural engineer
Institutions National Academy of Engineering
Institution of Structural Engineers
Practice nameLeslie E. Robertson Associates (LERA)
Projects World Trade Center
Shanghai World Financial Center
Bank of China Tower, Hong Kong
Awards John Fritz Medal (2012)
IStructE Gold Medal

Leslie Earl Robertson (born February 12, 1928) is an American engineer. He was the lead structural engineer of the Twin Towers of the original World Trade Center in New York City. [1] He has since been structural engineer on numerous other projects, including the Shanghai World Financial Center and the Bank of China Tower in Hong Kong.


Early life and education

Robertson studied civil engineering at University of California, Berkeley, and received a BSc degree in 1952.


Robertson's engineering career began in 1952, when he joined Kaiser Engineering. In 1958 he joined the Seattle structural and civil engineering firm Worthington and Skilling. As an "up-and-coming engineer",[ citation needed ] Robertson was selected by Worthington, Skilling, Helle, and Jackson (WSHJ) to participate in the design of the World Trade Center Twin Towers (1966–1971), his first high rise construction. [2] In 1967 Robertson was made a partner and WSHJ was renamed Skilling, Helle, Christiansen, Robertson. The firm split its operations in 1982, with Robertson renaming the East Coast office Leslie E. Robertson Associates RLLP [3]

Since the collapse of the World Trade Center in 2001, debates about the safety of rent-space-maximized designs have engaged the profession, but most would agree that the design of the World Trade Center actually withstood the impact of the plane with enough time to allow many thousands of occupants to evacuate safely. [4] Robertson's firm later participated in the development of a database of basic structural information for the towers of the World Trade Center (WTC1 and 2) for NIST and FEMA, [5] and to record the undocumented structural changes that had been made to the buildings after construction began.

Personal life

Robertson has been married for several decades to SawTeen See, an engineer who also has served as business manager of their architectural engineering practice, Leslie E. Robertson Associates (LERA). [6]


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  1. http://www.nj.com/news/index.ssf/2011/09/the_world_trade_center_work_of.html
  2. Koch, Karl (2002). Men of Steel: The Story of the Family That Built the World Trade Center. New York: Crown Publishers. ISBN   1-4000-4601-7.
  3. Leadership and Management in Engineering magazine. Volume 9, Issue 1, Engineering Legends pp. 46-50 (January 2009)
  4. http://www.fema.gov/pdf/library/fema403_execsum.pdf
  5. Leslie E. Robertson Associates support to NIST/FEMA Archived 2009-08-15 at the Wayback Machine
  6. "The Edward and Mary Allen Lecture in Structural Design". architecture.mit.edu. MIT Architecture Department. Retrieved 2019-03-06.
  7. "NAE Members - Mr. Leslie E. Robertson". NAE.edu. National Academy of Engineering . Retrieved November 25, 2015.
  8. Lewis, Scott (April 20, 2015), "ENR Marks 50 Years of Excellence", Engineering News-Record , New York: Dodge Data & Analytics, vol. 274 no. 11, pp. 42–56, ISSN   0891-9526
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  10. "IStructE Gold Medal Winners 1922-2008" . Retrieved 3 September 2015.[ permanent dead link ]
  11. "2004 Fazlur Khan Medal Winner". Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat. Retrieved 18 May 2012.
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  13. "International Award of Merit in Structural Engineering". IABSE. Archived from the original on 23 January 2019. Retrieved 12 February 2020.
  14. "Award Guide and Past Recipients". American Association of Engineering Societies. Archived from the original on 2013-05-11. Retrieved 2013-04-01.
  15. "La Fundación José Entrecanales Ibarra premia al ingeniero estadounidense Leslie E. Robertson". Acciona. Retrieved 2016-06-20.