Outstanding Achievement Award
Presented to graduates or former students who have attained unusual distinction in their chosen fields or professions or in public service, and who have demonstrated outstanding achievement and leadership on a community, state, national, or international level.
Zsolt Rumy (Chemical Engineering, B.S. ’66)
Founder, Zoltek Companies Inc.
Visionary business leader and courageous entrepreneur whose innovations revolutionized the carbon fiber composite industry.
Julie Stein (Ancient Studies M.A. '76, Ph.D. ’80—now part of Earth and Environmental Sciences))
Professor of Anthropology, University of Washington, and Executive Director, Burke Museum of Natural History and Culture
Extraordinary scientist, visionary leader, and dedicated mentor who has made significant contributions to geoarcheology and public education and outreach.
John P. Guider (Electrical Engineering, B.S. ’69)
Retired chief operating officer, Compellent Technologies
Entrepreneur and pioneer of the technologies that led to the initial PC superserver architecture and paved the way for cloud storage.
Kaushik Bhattacharya (Mechanics, Ph.D. ’91)
Professor, mechanics and materials science, and vice provost for research, California Institute of Technology
Visionary researcher who revolutionized the study of phase transformations, the shape-memory effect, and the behavior of functional materials.
Robert Brown (ChemE, Ph.D. ’79; Mathematics Ph.D. ’79)
President, Boston University
Renowned chemical engineer, whose seminal scholarship and insight have significantly advanced our understanding of the growth of semiconductor crystals and the flow of viscoelastic fluids.
Ronald Adrian (ME ’67, M.S. ’69)
Professor, School for Engineering of Matter, Transport and Energy
Arizona State University
A pioneer in the fluid mechanics field who made contributions in the areas of wall turbulence, thermal convection, coherent structures in turbulence and laser instrumentation.
John Bowers (Physics ’76)
Professor, Department of Materials and Electrical and Computer Engineering
University of California-Santa Barbara
Expert in the fields of electronic devices, device physics, and materials who made strides in integrating photonics with silicon semiconductor technology to add functionality to today’s computer chips.
Gary Brudvig (Chem ’76)
Chair, Department of Chemistry, Yale University
Pioneering researcher who has made significant contributions toward understanding the molecular details of photosynthesis and the development of new oxygen-evolving catalysts.
Bruce KenKnight (BME Ph.D. ’97)
President and CEO, Valtech Cardio Ltd.
Prominent innovator, with nearly 150 patents, of pioneering devices and therapies for cardiac rhythm management and heart failure assessment leading to improved clinical outcomes.
Bradley Peterson (Physics ’74)
Professor Emeritus, Department of Astronomy
The Ohio State University
A research leader who developed and used the technique of "reverberation mapping" to determine the structure of the inner regions of quasars and their supermassive black holes.
Tu Chen (MetallurgicalE M.S. ’64, Ph.D. ’67, ChemE. Ph.D. ’67)
Co-founder and retired board chair of Komag, Inc.
Materials scientist and engineer, known as the father of the modern disk drive, who developed a revolutionary sputtering process to produce vastly improved magnetic thin films and disks.
E. Dianne Rekow (ME ’70, M.S. ’82, BME Ph.D. ’88)
Dean, Dental Institute of King’s College, London
Known for her pioneering work with computer-assisted design and manufacturing (CAD/CAM) technology, which allows for high-quality and specialized-design dental materials such as crowns, dentures, implants or orthodontic appliances.
(Nominated by the University of Minnesota School of Dentistry)
Thomas Rusch (EE ’68, M.S. ’70, Ph.D. ’73, M.S. MOT ’93)
Co-founder and Chief Technical Officer, Xoft, Inc.
Engineer who developed electron and ion spectroscopies for surface chemical characterization, and led the development of a microtube X-ray system to treat patients with early-stage breast cancer.
Mark P. Board (GeoE ’75, M.S. ’77, Ph.D. ’94)
Corporate Director for Geotechnical Engineering, Hecla Mining Company
His innovative measures to reduce the risk of mine collapse due to rock bursts have set industry standards and saved countless lives.
Misha R. Burich (EE M.S. ’75, Ph.D. ’78)
Retired Chief Technology Officer of Altera Corporation
His contributions to the development of electronic design automation software (EDA) and logic chips known as FPGAs laid the foundation for ultra-high-performance systems for the military, wired and wireless communications, cloud computing, and other applications.
Patrick M. Foley (CivE ’71)
Retired Section Chief of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers
Hydraulics engineering and technical expert who influenced infrastructure projects through the United States.
Sun Kwok (Physics M.S. ’72, Ph.D. ’74)
Dean of Science and Chair Professor in Physics, The University of Hong Kong
Astrophysicist who demonstrated that the dying stars in the immense structures called planetary nebulae form dust and also forge organic compounds that may play a role in the origin of life.
Jeffrey A. Dean (CSci ’90)
Google Fellow, Systems Infrastructure Group, Google Inc.
Inventor of highly influential systems, including MapReduce, a framework for expressing and executing massively parallel programs; the Google file System, a very-large-scale distributed file system; and BigTable, a very-large-scale indexed data storage service.
Mark S. Lundstrom (EE ’73, M.S. ’74)
Don and Carol Scifres Distinguished Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering, Purdue University
Pioneering researcher, known for his seminal studies of carrier transport in nanoscale transistors, his work on scaling limits of transistors, and his scattering matrix approach to semiclassical carrier transport.
Darrel F. Untereker (Chem ’67)
Vice President, Corporate Research and Technology, and Senior Technical Fellow, Medtronic, Inc.
Scientist, who has applied his knowledge of chemistry and related sciences to developing medical devices that have improved the lives of millions of people.
Arthur Coury (Chem Ph.D. '65)
Biomaterials Executive, Coury Consulting Services
Renowned biomaterials/tissue engineering expert whose pioneering technical leadership has impacted innumerable lives.
Mark Kroll (Math ’76, EE M.S. ’83, Ph.D. ’87)
Principal, Mark Kroll & Associates
Electrophysiologist and a key developer of the biphasic, implantable cardioverter defibrillator (ICD), defibrillator device data-monitoring technology, and electrical CPR for treatment of cardiac arrest.
Mahendra Nath (ISyE M.S. ’65)
Founder, president, and CEO, Nath Companies
Dedicated civil leader who built one of Minnesota's top-ranked and family-owned businesses.
Yannis P. Tsividis (EE ’72)
Batchelor Professor of electrical engineering, Columbia University
Recognized contributor to the field of silicon chips who designed and built the first fully integrated MOS operational amplifier and demonstrated its use in a coder-decoder for digital telephony.
Bruce Bergman (EE ’64)
Principal, Bergman & Associates
Developed avionic controls and specialized computer systems for aerospace applications and computer storage.
W. Gary Ernst (Geology M.S. ’55)
Professor Emeritus, Department of Geological and Environmental Sciences, Stanford University
Honored as a legendary figure in the fields of mineralogy and petrology
Patrick Gruber (Chem Ph.D. ’89)
CEO, GEVO Incorporated
Recognized as a leader in developing and commercializing of renewable resource based products
Robert F. Hartmann (EE ’65)
Founder, Altera Corporation
Allan Martini (Geology ’51)
Retired Director and Worldwide Vice President of Exploration and Production
Gary H. Glover (EE ’64, M.S. ’66, Ph.D. ’69)
Professor, Stanford University School of Medicine
World-leading inventor for magnetic resonance imaging
Thomas Madison (Aero ’59)
Former President and CEO of Northwestern Bell (US West Communications)
Founder of MLM Partners
David Malah (EE Ph.D. ’71)
Professor, Technion, Israel Institute of Technology Leading researcher in image/video and speech/audio processing research
John M. Reid (EE ’50, M.S. ’57)
Professor Emeritus, Drexel University
Douglas Barr (CivE ’48, M.S. ’49)
Founder, Barr Engineering
Designed water supply and tailing disposal facilities for the taconite mining industry, and developed alternative methods for mitigating the effects of mines on surrounding lakes and streams.
Jack S. Braun (CivE. ’56, M.S. ’57)
Founder, Braun Intertec
Outstanding leader in the field of civil engineering.
Stanley Bruckenstein (Chem Ph.D. ’54)
Professor, University of Buffalo
Distinguished teacher, mentor, and researcher in the fields of analytical chemistry.
Morris E. Fine (MetallurgicalE ’40, M.S. ’42, Ph.D. ’43)
Professor Emeritus of Materials Science and Engineering at Northwestern University
Bruce A. Richard (EE ’54, Econ ’63)
Former president of Xcel Energy and managing director and partner at Spell Capital Partners
Parviz Moin (ME ’74)
Professor of Mechanical Engineering at Stanford University
Brett Shockley (ME ’82, MBA ’05)
CEO and President, Spanlink Communications
Omer W. Blodgett (MetallurgicalE ’41, ME ’74)
Acclaimed senior design consultant, Lincoln Electric Company
Otto G. Bonestroo (CivE ’49, M.S. ’50)
Founding partner of Bonestroo Engineering
Eugene E. Covert (AeroEng ’46, M.S. ’48)
T. Wilson Professor Emeritus of Aeronautics and Astronautics, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Robert W. Rosene (CivE ’45, M.S. ’48)
Founding partner of Bonestroo Engineering
Russell H. Susag (CivE ’56 and Ph.D. ’65)
President of Susag Environmental Consulting, Inc., and former director of environmental regulatory affairs, 3M
Jeannette E. Brown (OrganicChem ’58)
Research chemist and educational consultant 2004 Society Fellow of the Chemical Heritage Foundation
Ronald L. Christenson (ME ’72)
Vice president of corporate plant operations and CTO, Cargill Incorporated
Richard V. DeLeo (AeroE ’46, M.S. ’48)
Former vice president for aeronautical research, Rosemount Aerospace Division, Rosemount Inc.
D. S. Dhamotharan (CivE Ph.D. ’79)
Executive vice president, URS Corporation
Richard A. Hackborn (EE ’60)
Former executive vice president, Computer Products Organization, and chair of the board, Hewlett-Packard
John M. Jordan (AeroEng ’73, M.S. Mechanics ’75)
Aerospace engineer, U.S. Army Research, Development, and Engineering Command; Aviation and Missile Research, Development, and Engineering Center, Redstone Arsenal
Richard M. Kruger (ME ’81)
Vice president of Asia Pacific/Middle East ExxonMobil Production Company
Robert F. Naka (EE M.S. ’47)
President and CEO, CERA, Inc.
Darrell D. Rinerson (Physics ’69, EE M.S. ’77)
Founder and CEO, Unity Semiconductor Corporation
Leo J. Thomas (ChemE ’58)
Former president of the Imaging Group and executive vice president, Eastman Kodak
Hans K. Fauske (ChemE M.S. ’59)
Researcher and educator, medicinal and organic chemistry
Daniel H. Rich (Chem ’64)
Ralph F. Hirschmann Professor of Medicinal and Organic Chemistry Department of Chemistry, School of Pharmacy University of Wisconsin at Madison
Theofanis G. Theofanous (ChemE Ph.D. ’69)
Director, Center for Risk Studies and Safety Professor, Department of Chemical Engineering and Department of Mechanical and Environmental Engineering, University of California at Santa Barbara
Larry Wangberg (ME ’64, IndustrialEng M.S. ’66)
Chair, CEO, and board member, Tech TV (formerly ZDTV)
Carl A. Kuhrmeyer (ME ’49)
Senior vice president, 3M
John K. Moorhead (ME ’42)
Founder, Moorhead Machine and Boiler Company
Thomas C. Winter (Geology ’58, M.S. ’61, Hydrology Ph.D. ’71)
Scientist, U.S. Geological Survey
Krzysztof K. Burhardt (EE Ph.D. ’71)
Vice president, Honeywell
Donald A. Freeberg (EE ’48, Business ’49)
President and CEO, Sierra Land Group
Johnson Y.S. Luh (EE Ph.D. ’63)
Professor of electrical engineering, Clemson University
John J. Talley (Chem Ph.D. ’79)
Inventor of pharmaceuticals
Gerald W. Timm (EE ’63, M.S. ’65, Ph.D. ’67)
Founder, Mentor Corporation, American Medical Systems, Dacomed
Richard P. Braun, P.E. (CivE ’48, M.S. ’55)
Founding Director, Center for Transportation Studies, University of Minnesota Former commissioner, Minnesota Department of Transportation
James E. Cabak (ME ’60)
Founder, Bulk Molding Compounds, Inc.
Dean B. Chenoweth (ME ’43, B.B.A. ’48)
Founder and vice president, Advantek Neil M. Clark (ME ’48) President, Techpower, Inc.
J. Brian Evans (Geophysics M.S. ’75 )
Professor, Department of Earth, Atmospheric, and Planetary Science, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Barbara C.S. Hansen (Botany M.S. ’64)
Research fellow, Limnological Research Center, Department of Geology and Geophysics, University of Minnesota
Eric J. Heller (Chem ’68)
Professor of chemistry and professor of physics Harvard University
Heinrich M. Jaeger (Physics M.S. ’82, Ph.D. ’87)
Professor of physics, University of Chicago
Orville D. Johnson (ME ’60)
Chairman of the board, UFE Inc.
John Kraft (Geology Ph.D. ’55)
H. Fletcher Brown Professor of Geology, University of Delaware
Carl Krespan (Chem Ph.D. ’52)
Research associate and research fellow, Central Research and Development, E.I. du Pont de Nemours (retired)
Russell J. McNaughton (EE ’57)
Vice president, 3M (retired)
Phillip L. Merritt* (Geology ’28)
Assistant director, Raw Materials Division, Atomic Energy Commission; Senior geologist, E.J. Longyear Company
Reuben D. Rieke (Chem ’61)
Regents Professor of Chemistry, University of Nebraska
Richard J. Sundberg (Chem Ph.D. ’62)
Professor of chemistry, University of Virginia
Malcolm P. Weiss* (B.B.A. ’48, Geology Ph.D. ’53)
Professor emeritus, University of Northern Illinois
Leo D. Yau (EE M.S. ’65)
Director of Innovative Module Technology and Intel Fellow, Intel Corporation (retired)
Newman M. Bortnick (Chem ’41, Ph.D. ’44)
Rohm and Haas Company
John J. Baldwin (Chem Ph.D. ’60)
Chief science and technology officer, Pharmacopeia
Allison R. Palmer (Geology Ph.D. ’50)
President, Institute for Cambrian Studies, Boulder
James J. Papike (Geology Ph.D. ’64)
Regents Professor, University of New Mexico
Donald F. Wright (ME ’57)
Vice president, Times Mirror and CEO, Los Angeles Times
David M. Golden (Chem ’61)
Senior vice president, Science and Technology Group, Stanford Research Institute
Lee W. Johnson (ME ’57)
Founder, Reell Precision
Richard W. Clarke (ME ’53)
Corporate vice president (Retired), MTS Systems Corporation
Patrick F. Flynn (Ag ’59, M.S. ’65)
Vice president of research, Cummins Engine Company Inc.
Fred A. Donath (Geology ’54)
Founding executive director, Institute for Environmental Education, Geological Society of America
Bob G. Gower (Chem Ph.D. ’63)
President and CEO, Lyondell Petrochemical Company
Won-Hoon Park (ChemE Ph.D. ’71)
President, Korea Institute of Science and Technology
James A. Peterson (Geology Ph.D. ’52)
Geologist, U.S. Geological Survey, and professor of geology, University of Montana
Oscar A. Schott* (EE ’34)
Founder, Schott Corporation
Paul E. Rubbert (AeroEng ’58, M.S. ’60)
Technical Fellow and unit chief in aerodynamics research, Commercial Airplane Group, Boeing Corporation
Vernon L. Eriksen (ME ’65, M.S. ’68, Ph.D. ’71)
Robert H. Rutford (Geography ’54, M.A. ’63, Geology Ph.D. ’69)
President, University of Texas at Dallas, and polar research scientist
Robert K. Anderson (EE ’63)
President of health care ventures, Pfizer; chair, Camino Laboratories; and cofounder and chair, Valleylab, Inc.
Robert R. Berg (Geology Ph.D. ’51)
Professor of geology, Texas A&M University
Robert D. Gunn (Geology ’49)
Petroleum geologist and entrepreneur; former president, American Association of Petroleum Geologists
John J. Kelberer* (EE ’50)
Chair and CEO, Aramco
Joseph C. Kellogg (CivEng ’51)
Founder and senior principal, Kellogg Corporation
Edward P. Ney* (Physics ’42)
Regents Professor Emeritus of Physics and Astronomy, University of Minnesota
Charles A. Amann (Naval Technology ’46, ME M.S. ’48)
Director of Engineering Research Council, General Motors Corporation
Charles M. Britzius* (CivEng ’33, M.S. ’38)
Founder, Twin City Testing and Engineering Laboratory
Leroy M. Fingerson (ME ’54, M.S. ’55, Ph.D. ’61)
George R. Gibson* Consulting petroleum geologist (Geology ’30, Ph.D. ’34)