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Lifetime Achievement Award honors economics emeritus Ken Casavant

Posted by struscott | November 2, 2018
Group photo showing the four presenting and receiving an award certificate.
Ken Casavant, emeritus professor of economic sciences, receives his Lifetime Achievement Award from PacTrans director Yinhai Wang and assistant director Cole Kopca, Oct. 12. Casavant is joined by Eric Jessup, director of the WSU Freight Policy Transportation Institute, left.


Honored for five decades of work helping address regional, national and international transportation challenges, Kenneth Casavant, Emeritus Professor in the School of Economic Sciences, has received the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Pacific Northwest Transportation Consortium, or PacTrans.

A Washington State University alumnus and 2015 recipient of the WSU President’s Distinguished Lifetime Service Award, Casavant received the PacTrans honor Oct. 12 at the Region 10 Transportation Conference at the University of Alaska Fairbanks.

“Washington is the most trade dependent state in the United States, and when you can’t reach your customer, there is no trade,” Casavant said. “Transportation is the lifeline of our economy. Improving it is critical to people and products, and I have relished seeing our work at WSU providing those benefits.”

Receiving his doctorate in agricultural economics here in 1971, Casavant has studied and worked at WSU for 50 years. An agricultural economist and longtime Faculty Athletics representative, Casavant was co-developer and director of the WSU Freight Policy Transportation Institute with Associate Professor Eric Jessup, and a member of the Northwest Power Planning Council. He retired in 2018.

Mentoring many students and faculty members, Casavant’s research explores how policy affects people and the movement of goods that power our economy. His work has helped develop more intelligent, effective transportation systems of roads, rail and ports for producers and customers.

“Being recognized for what I have always enjoyed doing is a pleasure,” Casavant said. “All young people should want to work in an area that is so essential, rewarding and fun.”

Supporting research to solve transportation challenges in the Pacific Northwest, PacTrans is a consortium of transportation professionals and educators at Oregon State University, Washington State University, University of Alaska Fairbanks, University of Idaho, University of Washington, Boise State and Gonzaga University.

  • Learn more about PacTrans here.
  • Learn more about the WSU Freight Policy Transportation Institute here.