Eugene Skok: Leader in Paving

Eugene L. Skok "Gene" (PE, Ph.D. 1968) passed away peacefully on June 29, 2020. Gene Skok was a civil engineer and former faculty member at the University of Minnesota. He was a leader in the pavement engineering profession. He is survived by his wife Betty; they had been married for 59 years.

Skok completed his bachelor, master’s, and Ph.D. degrees in Civil Engineering at UMN. His pioneering research, under the supervision of Professor Miles Kersten, led to the development of an asphalt pavement design procedure for the State of Minnesota, parts of which are still in use today.

Skok was a researcher on the original American Association of State Highway Officials (AASHO) Road Test in early 1960’s, and was instrumental in the planning and construction of MnROAD test facility in early 1990’s. Last August, he attended MnROAD’s 25th anniversary celebration. Skok worked with several companies and organizations including the Minnesota Highway Department, the Asphalt Institute, Midwest Pavement Technologies, Braun Intertec, and the Minnesota Asphalt Paving Association. Skok served as Secretary-Treasurer for the Association of Asphalt Paving Technologists (AAPT) from 1969-2013, setting a standard of excellence and providing AAPT with continuity and quality.

Skok’s approachability and his willingness to invest time with others made him a great mentor to young pavement engineers and a model for established professionals. Skok influenced many in the field through his years of teaching at the University and in the two-year program for technicians in civil engineering at the St. Paul Technical College. In 2016, the Department of Civil, Environmental, and Geo- Engineering established the Eugene Skok Scholarship, funded through the proceeds of the National Road Research Alliance (NRRA) annual conference, to honor Skok’s contributions to the pavement community. The Eugene Skok Scholarship benefits undergraduate students studying at UMN with an interest in pavement engineering.