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Phillip Thompson, PhD, PE

Director of Center for Environmental Justice and Sustainability


Curriculum Vitae

Teaching and Research Interests

Dr. Thompson teaches courses in environmental engineering and economics. His areas of research have included hazardous waste remediation, drinking water and wastewater treatment.  Dr. Thompson’s recent work has examined the performance of water and wastewater treatment systems for the Bullitt Center which is one of the most sustainable buildings in the world. He has also studied the stability of anaerobic digesters during periods of high loading, the effectiveness of alternative drinking water treatment systems for developing countries and the use of plants to restore soil and groundwater contaminated with hazardous wastes.


Phillip Thompson is the Director of the Seattle University Center for Environmental Justice and Sustainability and is a professor in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering. He joined Seattle University in 1997, after receiving his PhD in Environmental Engineering from the University of Iowa. Dr. Thompson is a registered Professional Engineer in the State of Washington and has been a principal engineer for Northwest Engineers, LLC since 2001 where he has consulted on a range of infrastructure projects. Through his work with the Seattle University chapter of Engineers for a Sustainable World, he has completed over 20 international projects in Haiti, Thailand, Nicaragua, Peru and Zambia. He has also served as a reviewer for numerous environmental journals, the National Science Foundation, and as a consultant for the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation’s Reinvent the Toilet Project. Dr. Thompson served as Civil and Environmental Engineering Department Chair from 2006-2013. He received the 2015 Seattle University Alumni Association's Distinguished Faculty Award and the 2011-2012 Father James McGoldrick Fellowship which is Seattle University's highest faculty honor. He was also awarded the 2009-2010 Thomas J. Bannan endowed chair of engineering.