Joe DeVries (1936 – 2013)

DeVriesJohannes (Joe) Joost DeVries (1936 – 2013)

Joe DeVries a longtime lecturer in the Departments of Civil and Environmental Engineering and Land, Air and Water Science died December 8, 2013 after a long battle with prostate cancer. A civil engineering graduate of the University of Michigan, Joe received his Ph. D. from UC Davis in 1978. Joe began his professional career in 1961 as a member of the design team for the California Aqueduct. The work brought him in contact with Professor Jaime Amorocho and led to Joe coming to UC Davis in 1972 as a research engineer and chief of the Hydraulics Laboratory where much of the physical modeling of aqueduct structures was conducted. While at UC Davis, Joe served as northern regional coordinator and associate director of the University Water Resources Center. He was widely recognized for his contributions to hydraulics and hydrology and was a sought after consultant by both domestic and international agencies and firms. Joe’s international contributions included work and teaching in Japan, Taiwan, India, Morocco, and Argentina.


Joe was an excellent teacher who developed close relationships with students. Joe’s wide professional experience enabled him to combine theory and practice in ways that gave students confidence as well as knowledge. He was an important contributor to the development of the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, a genial colleague who always greeted others with a warm smile and always said yes when asked to contribute to teaching and research programs. Joe is survived by his wife Donna, son Jeffrey and daughter Doney, and grandchildren Ellora and Carson Biggs.