March 26: Reception, lecture by emeritus award winner

Whittlesey-80PULLMAN, Wash. – The free, public Legacy of Excellence Reception – including a lecture by 2014 WSU Emeritus Society Legacy of Excellence Award winner Norman K. Whittlesey – will be at 4 p.m. Wednesday, March 26, in Todd Hall 276.

Whittlesey will share many entertaining and interesting stories in his talk, “Recalling Past Experiences Of Water Policy Research.” Light refreshments will follow. The event is hosted by the Washington State University Emeritus Society.

WSU Professor Emeritus Whittlesey will be presented with the award during WSU’s annual Showcase Celebrating Excellence Recognition Banquet on March 28. Reservations are being accepted at the Showcase website,, through Wednesday, March 19.

The emeritus award is given for sustained contributions to academia, continued service to the university, community and mankind, and personal accomplishments in retirement that serve as a role model for other retirees.

A water resource economist in the WSU School of Economic Sciences, Whittlesey is known for a career of groundbreaking research in water policy and irrigation management. In 1998 he was elected a fellow of the American Agricultural Economics Association. In 1987 he won the Award for Professional Excellence from the association for work in water policy related to irrigation development in the West.

He has consulted on three U.S. Supreme Court cases involving disputes between states over allocation of cross-border rivers. He has served on regional and national committees and task forces engaged in policy development for solving problems of natural resource management and the environment.

As an emeritus faculty member, he said, “I still engage in reviews and critiques of proposed water development projects in Washington and the Pacific Northwest, trying to bring economic reality to political and bureaucratic plans for spending the public’s money.”

At WSU since 1964, Whittlesey has authored more than 200 publications about water value, allocation and conservation. His research and teaching have encompassed production agriculture, irrigation development, water policy and environmental economics throughout the West.

He earned a bachelor of science degree from Colorado A&M, later Colorado State University. After serving in the Army 101st Airborne Division, he received his master’s degree at CSU and his Ph.D. in 1963 from Iowa State University.