Donor spotlight: civil engineering alumnus Lawrence Sivak

Thank you to Lawrence E. Sivak (’71 BS Civil Engineering) for his generous support of UWM’s College of Engineering & Applied Science and the UWM Foundation. His donation was part of the college’s New Frontiers in Research campaign, which seeks to raise $5 million so students can learn from the best and brightest faculty and engage in world-changing research.   

The newly established Lawrence E. Sivak ’71 Professorship in Engineering Fund will support two professorships within the college, at least one of which will be awarded to a civil engineering researcher.

The Lawrence E. Sivak ’71 Research Development Award, also new, will provide financial support to the college’s faculty members for research and/or teaching.

“My UWM faculty gave me the tools to impact infrastructure critical to people’s lives, and for over 40 years I made a lot of waves around water,” Larry said. “By supporting an engineering professorship, I’m able to make an even bigger splash, as I double the impact of my gift, funding important next-generation research while also supporting the people who are training and inspiring tomorrow’s engineers.”

About Sivak

Larry held many key positions in civil engineering during his 40-year career, retiring in 2014 as vice president of Arcadis.

With the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, he addressed harbor maintenance and flood control.

He worked for CH2M Hill on the Milwaukee Water Pollution Abatement Program, where he was a senior project manager responsible for upgrades to the Jones Island and South Shore Wastewater Treatment plants. 

Working for Arcadis, he was a construction manager of the Virginia Initiative Plant Nutrient Reduction Improvements (a national leader in wastewater treatment), played a key role in constructing a new water treatment plant and distribution system for Henrico County (Virginia), and worked on the construction or a $28 million groundwater treatment plant in western Virginia.

Larry lives in Florida with his wife, Vivienne.