Dr. Jeffrey R. Keaton Receives Prestigious Ivan B. Rahn Education Award
The Society for Mining, Metallurgy & Exploration (SME) Rahn Award Committee has selected long-time SME member Dr. Jeffrey R. Keaton as the 2021 recipient of the prestigious Ivan B. Rahn Education Award. He was acknowledged on SME’s virtual awards video during the Society’s March 1-5, 2021 MINEXCHANGE Annual Conference & Expo.
The Rahn Award is administered by SME’s Council of Education & Accreditation under the direction of the SME Board of Directors. The award recognizes members (not necessarily an educator) who have shown long-term interest in and have significantly contributed to SME activities relating to the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET), student affairs, continuing education, professional registration, and/or the Council of Education.
Keaton is recognized for his outstanding contributions to university education, and service to ABET as Program Evaluator, Commissioner and Engineering Accreditation Commission Chair 2018-2019.
When Keaton was asked what his first thought was when he learned he was the recipient of the Ivan B. Rahn Education Award, he replied, “Wow! Me? I thought this award was for SME members who were educators. I’m from industry, so this is an unexpected honor. Thank you very much. Over the past dozen years, my ABET activities have felt like they were for all accredited engineering programs, not just my ‘home’ geological engineering program. I am very pleased to have my contributions recognized. Thank you to SME for this award.”
Keaton is Principal Engineering Geologist for Wood in Los Angeles, CA. During his career he has contributed to mining projects on five continents in the areas of site characterization and earthquake ground motion for design of tailing storage facilities, as well as rock mechanics for feasibility-level design of open-pit slopes and crusher foundations. Keaton holds degrees in geological engineering, civil engineering (geotechnical), and geology from Arizona, UCLA, and Texas A&M. He became involved in accreditation of geological engineering programs in the mid-1990s, representing SME-AIME on ABET’s Engineering Accreditation Commission (EAC) from 2007 to 2012. He was invited to join EAC’s Executive Committee, where he served on and chaired its Criteria Committee. Elected as EAC’s Vice Chair of Operations in 2016, he became Chair in 2018. He led EAC teams to Mexico, Peru, Philippines, Russia, and Saudi Arabia, and EAC’s first large-scale virtual review in 2017 (25 programs in Turkey reviewed from the United States). He worked to strengthen consistency in the treatment of laboratory and field safety in accreditation reviews.
The Society for Mining, Metallurgy & Exploration (SME) brings together the mining and mineral industry’s brightest and most dedicated professionals. Over 13,000 global members advance their careers with the world-class technical resources, educational programs, networking opportunities and professional development tools from SME. Our members are focused on sharing best practices for safety, environmental stewardship and moving mining forward.