James Fisher, PHD, PE, SE
Emeritus Vice President

James M. Fisher has been associated with CSD Structural Engineers since 1968, and he became a Principal of the firm in 1974. Dr. Fisher received a Bachelor of Science degree in Civil Engineering from the University of Wisconsin in 1962. After serving two years as a Lieutenant in the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Dr. Fisher continued his formal education. He received his Master of Science and Ph.D. degrees in Structural Engineering from the University of Illinois in 1965 and 1968 respectively. Prior to joining the firm Dr. Fisher was an assistant professor of Structural Engineering at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. He is a registered Structural Engineer in several states.

Dr. Fisher specialized in structural steel research and development. He has spent a large part of his career investigating building systems and the study of economical structural framing systems. In recent years, he has become recognized as an authority in the performance of structures and the design of light gage steel structures

Dr. Fisher is a member of the American Iron and Steel Institute (AISI) Committee on Specifications and a member of the American Institute of Steel Construction’s (AISC) Specification committee for the Design, Fabrication and Erection of Structural Steel for Buildings, and a member of the Association for Iron and Steel Technology (AIST) Subcommittee No. 13 on Design and Construction of Mill Buildings.

His work has also resulted in his co-authorship of twelve books. In addition, he is the author of many technical publications in the field of Structural Engineering.

Dr. Fisher is a member of the American Society of Civil Engineers, The National Society of Professional Engineers and honorary fraternities Tau Beta Pi, Sigma Xi, Chi Epsilon and Phi Kappa Phi.

Dr. Fisher received the 1984 T.R. Higgins Lectureship Award presented by the American Institute of Steel Construction, and in 2000 he received AISC’s Life Time Achievement Award. Both awards recognize Dr. Fisher for his exceptional contribution to the steel construction industry through his work and publications on industrial building design.


BS, Civil Engineering, 1962, University of Wisconsin
MS, Civil Engineering, 1965, University of Illinois
PhD, Structural Engineering, 1968, University of Illinois

Professional Registration

New York
South Carolina


1984 AISC T.R. Higgens Award Winner
2000 AISC Lifetime Achievement Award Winner
2006 AISC J. Lloyd Kimbrough Award – AISC’s highest award
2024 Metal Building Manufacturers Association (MBMA) Dr. Duane S. Ellifritt Research Award

Professional Societies

American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) Member ASCE Committee on Design of Steel Building Structures (Chairman ’90-’93) ASCE-SEI Committee on Cold-Formed Steel American Iron and Steel Institute (AISI) “Specification for the Design of Cold-Formed Steel Structural Members” (Former Vice Chairman) Former member of the Advisory Board for the Wisconsin State Building Code American Institute of Steel Construction (AISC) “Specification Committee”, Chairman Association For Iron and Steel Technology (AIST) “Committee on the Design of Mill Buildings”
Organization Involvement