The award, which was instituted by the Board of Direction in 1987, is funded by gifts from the construction industry. The award recognizes and honors an individual who has made an outstanding contribution to the advancement of construction engineering. The recipient of the award will deliver a "Roebling Lecture" at an appropriate meeting of the Society.

The award consists of a certificate and a cash prize determined annually by and subject to the approval of the Society Awards Committee based on the income from the award endowment.