Wilbur Milhouse establishes Milhouse Family Classroom
Alumnus Wilbur Milhouse (BS 94, MS 95) and his wife, Dawn, have made a gift to establish the Milhouse Family Classroom. Milhouse is president and CEO of Milhouse Engineering & Construction Inc., the firm he founded in 2001. The name of the classroom has dual meaning.
“Whenever I refer to Milhouse Engineering and the individuals in it, we talk about being the Milhouse family. The name refers to my own personal family and also my family at large here at Milhouse,” he says.
Milhouse is a longtime supporter of the University of Illinois, having served on several university boards, including the College of Engineering Board of Visitors and the CEE Alumni Association Board of Directors. His many awards have included the CEEAA Distinguished Alumnus Award (2018); the Illinois Section of the American Society of Civil Engineers Citizen Engineer of the Year (2016); the University of Illinois at Chicago Institute of Entrepreneurial Studies Chicago Area Entrepreneurship Hall of Fame (2015); and a University of Illinois Black Alumni Network Power Mover (2015). Milhouse’s extensive involvement in civic and charitable groups has included his founding of Milhouse Charities in 2012. He was featured in the Chicago Tribune for his efforts to bring power to Nigeria.
When asked about his motivation for giving to the Modernization Plan, Milhouse said, “I’d like to give back to my university. You go through life, and you get to a level of success, and I like to remember those who helped me get there. The university and the faculty are all part of that.”
Milhouse also sees value in improving CEE’s facilities.
”When I was going to school there, we didn’t have the Yeh addition that is there now,” he said. “It was very bare; we had classes in the basement, and we’d wait in the dark hallway. Having additional classes and lecture spaces is very important. You made do. But if you go to other universities, or even to other departments at Illinois, you think, we need a better building. We’ve been number one for so long, it’s time to give a little TLC.”