James Clise (EOH ’63) was awarded the Pitt Public Health Alumni Award for Practice on May 17, 2014, at the annual Alumni Awards dinner.
The Alumni Award for Practice is presented to an alumnus/na who has made significant contribution to public health practice.
In 2014, he celebrated his sixty-fourth year in the workforce, holding varied roles in the private and public sectors. His career began in 1950 in the position of sanitarian of the Carroll County Health Department in Maryland where he supervised the inspection of restaurants, canneries, swimming pools, dairy farms, development of subdivisions, issuance of septic tank installation permits, and sampling of public and private water supplies. He later held positions in the Maryland Food Processing Section, the Prince Georges County Health Department, and the Maryland State Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, where he held the positions of chief, Division of General Sanitation and director, Bureau of Sanitary Engineering. In 1978, he left the east coast for Utah, where he served as director, Utah Division of Environmental Health. He next worked on contracts for the United States Environmental Protection Agency reviewing sewer facility construction for the states of Utah, Colorado, North Dakota, South Dakota, Wyoming, and Montana. He next served as executive director of the Conference of State Sanitary Engineers until he founded his own company, Sanitary/Environmental Engineering, Inc., in 1982. Clise continues his work with his company today in his late eighties. He holds certifications with Maryland as a professional sanitarian and with Maryland, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, and Utah as a professional engineer. He is also registered with the American Academy of Sanitarians. He has published papers and presented at conferences, and is responsible for the designs of 20 waste water treatment plants, sanitation systems, and sewage facilities, as well as more than 400 individual home sanitation systems. Clise holds a BS from WV Wesleyan and an MPH from Pitt Public Health.