July 27, 2011 – William D. Middleton, 83, died July 10 in Livonia, N.Y. He worked as the chief facilities officer at the University of Virginia from 1979 to 1993, after serving in the Navy.
A memorial service will be held July 30 at 1 p.m. at the University of Virginia Columbarium,
At U.Va., Middleton was responsible for construction and maintenance of buildings and grounds, planning and construction. He was instrumental in offering staff in every trade professional development through comprehensive training plans, licensing and a formal apprenticeship program, the first of its kind at any Virginia public institution. Active for many years with APPA, the international association of higher education facilities officers, he was its vice president for three years and elected as its president in 1990.
Following his retirement from the University, he continued his extensive work in conducting facilities management evaluations for dozens of colleges and universities.
For more than 60 years, Middleton was also active as a reporter, writer and photographer. While his work was largely on the subject of railroad history and operation, he also wrote about engineering, military topics and travel. His published work includes more than 20 books and approximately 700 articles for magazines and newspapers, accompanied by photographs. He was a long-time writer for Railway Age, Railroad Track and Structures, Railway Gazette International and International Railway Journal, as well as general publications such as American Heritage.