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Recipients of the Professional Award in Engineering

The Professional Award in Engineering is the Mechanical Engineering Department's highest alumni award. It recognizes significant technical achievement over the course of a career and/or extraordinary service contributions to the engineering profession.

Gregg Wozniak - 2012

Gulfstream Aerospace Corporation's new G650: the world's fastest business jet.

Gregg Wozniak is a Lead Authorized Representative (AR) at Gulfstream Aerospace Corporation ensuring compliance of aircraft powerplants, APUs, fuel systems, and fire protection systems with Federal Aviation Administration requirements under Gulfstream's Organization Designation Authorization (ODA). Mr. Wozniak attended Speed School from 1984 to 1989, earning his B.Sc. degree in 1988 and his M.Eng. degree in 1989. The advisor for his thesis, "Steam Turbine Performance Estimation Using a Correlation Loss Model and Analytical Steam Table Formulation," was Dr. Geoffrey Cobourn. He did his cooperative education internships with the Electrical and Electronics Division of Ford Motor Company in Dearborn, Michigan.

Upon graduation Mr. Wozniak was employed by McDonnell Douglas Aircraft Corporation in St. Louis, Missouri, where he worked on the design, integration, and testing of new higher thrust engines in the Advanced F-15 Propulsion Engineering department. In 1990 he joined Boeing Commercial Aircraft Corporation in Seattle, Washington. Here his responsibilities included the design, integration, test and certification of the 777-200 and 777-300 aircraft models as an FAA-DER (Designated Engineering Representative) in the Powerplant Engineering department. He was named “Employee of the Quarter” after obtaining FAA approval for a new engine fire extinguishing test methodology for aircraft certification credit. He performed thermodynamic analyses of the engine nacelle including the inlet, the cowling and the thrust reverser, and supported the flight test programs as subject matter expert for topics such as in-flight engine restarts, under-cowl cooling and oil and fuel system heat management. He also co-authored the documentation necessary for the 777 programs to achieve 180-minutes ETOPS operating approval at the time of type certification; a new industry benchmark for aircraft certification criteria at entry into service, and a milestone that revolutionized international air travel by permitting extended overwater operation of modern twin-engine aircraft.

In 2002 Mr. Wozniak joined Gulfstream Aerospace Corporation in Savannah, Georgia. Here he supports the design, integration, test, and certification of multiple Gulfstream aircraft models as a Lead ODA-AR in the Powerplant Engineering department. His area of authority as an AR includes powerplant, APU, fuel system, and fire protection, predominantly in the New Products Division responsible for new type-design certification programs including industry leading products such as the G650. As a Lead AR, Mr. Wozniak oversees the regulatory activity of the Powerplant ARs across all Gulfstream aircraft models. By title he is a Principal Engineer within Powerplant Engineering, which is one of the highest technical positions within GAC Engineering. In addition to technical and programmatic tasks, Principal Engineers serve as mentors to younger engineering staff members. Finally, Mr. Wozniak serves as the Gulfstream representative for the SAE AE-2 Aircraft Lightning Strike Committee. As a member of this committee he is co-authoring industry recommendations for new certification criteria for the protection of aircraft fuel tanks from the effects of lightning strikes.

Among Mr. Wozniak’s many significant professional achievements are the patents he received for a novel approach to alleviate the bending moment at the wing root by a fuel pumping system within the wing (US0139727 and US6997415 Method and Arrangement for Aircraft Fuel Dispersion). This design has been implemented on numerous Gulfstream aircraft used for both civil and military derivative applications.

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Rodney A. Ewing - 2011

Rodney Ewing graduated from the University of Louisville with a Bachelor of Science degree in Mechanical Engineering in 1995 and a Master of Engineering degree in 1996. He did his cooperative education internships at Cummins Inc. He joined the company full time after completing his M.Eng. and remains employed there. In October 2006 he received his Masters of Business Administration from Indiana Wesleyan University.

Cummins' next generation 4-cylinder QSB4.5 engine.

Known worldwide for their reliable, efficient diesel engines, Cummins Inc. is a industry leader in the design, manufacture, distribution and service of engines and related technologies, including fuel systems, controls, air handling, filtration, emission solutions and electrical power generation systems. At Cummins Mr. Ewing has worked in various roles in customer assistance, engine mechanical development, six sigma project management, and fuel system performance. He is a certified black belt and six sigma sponsor. From 2004-2010 he was a manager leading the injector development and the pump development engineering teams at Cummins Fuel Systems. In 2011 he was promoted to his current position, Chief Engineer of the pump development team.

Mr. Ewing is a member of the University of Louisville recruiting team at Cummins, and served many years on the Mechanical Engineering Department External Board of Advisors. He holds a part-time faculty appointment as an Adjunct Assistant Professor of Mechanical Engineering, and teaches ME 647 Advanced Design Methods as a distance learning course. He and his wife Lori have two children, Ashley and Adam, and reside in Columbus, Indiana.

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J. Dean Terrell - 2010

US patent 6491154, unstacker for unstacking items conveyed in a bulk stream.

Dean Terrell is Vice President of Engineering for Santa Rosa Systems, Inc., in Louisville, Kentucky. Mr. Terrell received his Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering (1992) and Masters of Engineering in Mechanical Engineering (1993) from the University of Louisville. Upon graduation, he was hired by an international technology company with a division specializing in automated material handling systems and sortation. During his employment with this company, he worked as a R&D engineer, developing new designs for high-speed sortation equipment and systems.

In 2000, Mr. Terrell went to work for defense and aerospace giant Northrop Grumman Corporation. While there he worked on special assignment in the United Kingdom to deploy the cutting-edge, automated ‘T.O.P. 2000’ sortation system for the Royal Mail Service in Birmingham, England. The system was successfully implemented at ‘Royal Mail’. This technology was subsequently deployed in U.S. Postal facilities around the country as the platform for their automated Flats Sortation Systems (FSS).

Dean left Northrop Grumman in 2003 and joined a start-up company, Material Handling Systems, Inc. which was founded by UofL graduates from the J.B. Speed School of Engineering and the College of Business and Professional Administration. Material Handling Systems specializes in package handling systems design and integration within the courier industry. Dean has served as Vice President of Engineering for both Santa Rosa Systems and Material Handling Systems since 2006. In 2009 the companies generated over $100 million in combined revenue.

During Dean’s tenure as VP of Engineering, the company has organized and hosted several visits from U of L classes. He has also mentored and acted as final project advisor for a number of students. Over the years MHS and SRS have hosted a number of co-op students as well as part time engineers, working around their schedules as they completed their education at UofL.

Mr. Terrell is the primary inventor or co-inventor for many US and foreign patents, including:

  • US5950800 Conveying methods and apparatus, September 14, 1999
  • US5918724 Low inertia article-diverter blade, July 6, 1999
  • US1167246 Double helix spiral chute. Northrop Grumman January 2, 2002
  • US6491154 Unstacker for unstacking items conveyed in a bulk stream, March 17, 2004
  • US0152694 Diverter swing arm, June 21, 2012.

His design for automated package singulation machines are deployed in U.S. Postal Distribution Centers across the United States.

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John K. Besore - 2009

John K. Besore received his M.Eng. degree in 1988 and his B.Sc. degree in 1987. When chosen to receive the Mechanical Engineering Department’s 2009 Professional Award in Engineering, he was serving as GE Appliances’ systems manager for developing “Smart Appliances” that are capable of respond to smart grid signals to shed load based upon demand conditions. In more than 25 years at GE, he managed several multi-million dollar projects, including programs to meet DOE energy standards in refrigeration. He led an advanced development group in manufacturing, specifically devoted to developing and implementing new equipment technologies in appliance manufacturing plants. He managed numerous groups within critical GE in technology focus areas involving design, quality, and manufacturing. His many notable career accomplishments include:

  • Holder of eight U.S. patents in the appliance field (mostly refrigeration-related)
  • Licensed professional engineer in mechanical engineering
  • GE Corporate Six Sigma quality certification
  • General class FCC license

In addition to his GE Appliances career, Mr. Besore has worked as a gas design engineer for Texaco’s Onshore Natural Gas Division, and as a plant engineer for a major distillery with a specific focus on Industrial HVAC, cooling towers, chilled water systems and distillery controls. He also served as director of product development for Bosch Power Tools Division.  Back to top.

Patrick A. Tobbe - 2008

Dr. Patrick Tobbe graduated from the University of Louisville with a Master’s degree in Mechanical Engineering in 1983. He is co-founder and (in 2008) vice president of Dynamic Concepts in Huntsville, Ares I-X rocket on the pad prior to its 10/28/09 test launch. Alabama. A company of over sixty employees, Dynamic Concepts provides analytical and test support to both NASA and DOD. Previously he was the manager of the Space Systems Division of the Control Dynamics Company. He earned his PhD in mechanical engineering (from another institution) in 1995 with emphasis in classical and structural dynamics and control system design and analysis.

Dr. Tobbe has over twenty-five years of experience in the analysis and testing of aerospace vehicles, robotic systems, and rendezvous and capture systems through digital and hardware-in-the-loop simulations. He has developed new techniques for the formulation of the equations of motion of multibody systems with flexible structural components and efficient algorithms for the solution of these systems in real time through parallel programming and distributed simulation. He also constructed integrated real time simulations of the International Space Station, Space Shuttle, and Remote Manipulator Systems to evaluate and validate the design and performance of the Common Berthing Mechanism and resulting interface loads. The simulation was also used to formulate assembly procedures and crew training.

At the time he received the ME PAE, Dr. Tobbe was the simulation and modeling lead at the Marshall Space Flight Center for the Ares 1 launch vehicle in the System Integration Lab (SIL). The SIL utilized a real time, distributed hardware-in-the-loop simulation to verify and validate vehicle performance utilizing flight software and avionics components.  Back to top.

Karen Edberg - 2007

The J.B. Speed School of Engineering strives to develop engineers who with both exceptional technical abilities, and a commitment to leadership and service within their profession and community. Karen Edberg epitomizes these traits. She graduated from the University of Louisville with a B.Sc. in Mechanical Engineering, and in 1992 with an M.Eng. in Mechanical Engineering. In her exceptional engineering career she has established herself as a technical leader in two major Louisville companies. At American Air Filter (1994-1998) she led design teams developing intake and exhaust systems for filtration equipment. As a lead design engineer at GE Appliances (1998-present) she helps optimize the component design and cooking algorithms for convection, microwave, and speedcooking ovens. She provides company-wide leadership in using FRACAS (failure reporting and corrective action system) for product evaluation and improvement.

Ms. Edberg’s leadership abilities extend to the development of intellectual property; she is inventor for four U.S. patents (6867399, 6815644, 20040178192, and 20070095822). She is also a leader in advancing the mechanical engineering profession both within General Electric and throughout the Louisville region. She is a member of the GE Women in Technology planning committee. She has served two terms on the University of Louisville Mechanical Engineering Department’s External Board of Advisors, where her vast industrial experience and methodical approach to assessment helped the faculty enhance the curriculum, and prepare for its 2006 external review. She is a longstanding, almost iconic member of the leadership team of Louisville Chapter of the American Society of mechanical Engineers, serving since 1996 as section secretary, section treasurer, and finally, section chair.  Back to top.

Dino Kasdagly - 2006

Dino received mechanical engineering B.Sc. and M.Sc. degree from UofL in 1976 and 1977, respectively.  He also earned an MBA from the Carlson School of Management in 1997 from the University of Minnesota.

Mr. Kasdagly has approximately 30 years’ experience in hardware and software product development, product management, marketing and sales, manufacturing and operations, consulting services engagement and management, mergers and acquisitions, turn-around management and international management in the technology, department of defense and health care industries. At the time he received his ME-PAE, he served as Chief Operating Officer of Mayo Collaborative Services, Inc. (MCSI). In this role he provided world wide operations leadership for Mayo Reference Services and Mayo Clinical Trial Services, and led the development of the future information system management strategy for the division.

His past positions include Vice President, R&D and Integrated Supply Chain at Imation Corporation, a leading manufacturer of removable data storage media located in Oakdale, Minnesota. Executive Director, Supply Chain at Pemstar.  Prior to that he was the Sr. Vice President, Marketing and Development for Digi International responsible for Local and Wide Area Network technology offerings in the technology industry located in Minnetonka, Minnesota.  In addition, he spent over 17 years in a variety of technical and executive positions spanning New Product Development, Operations Management, Marketing and Sales, Professional Services and Corporate Reengineering with IBM in New York, New Jersey and Minnesota.

Mr. Kasdagly is an adjunct professor at Augsburg College, where he teaches leadership in the MBA program.  He also is a guest lecturer for first year MBA students at the Carlson School of Management, University of Minnesota, where he lectures on power and politics in the workplace.  Back to top.

William F. Pearse, Jr. - 2005

A Louisville native, William F. Pearse, Jr. is a 1984 graduate of Speed School, where he earned his masters degree in Mechanical Engineering. Before graduating, Mr. Pearse left his mark by serving as founding captain of Speed School's first Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE) Mini-Baja team. On a severely limited budget, the team designed and built an off-road race car, and then participated in SAE's national competition against many of the nation's highest ranked universities. This effort was the start of what has become a Speed School/Mechanical Engineering Department tradition.

This start-up mentality that began at Speed School has characterized much of Mr. Pearse’s professional career. Since leaving UofL, he has gone on to establish a record of performance at venture-backed and private investor-sponsored technology companies. A serial entrepreneur, he has started or been recruited to lead the re-engineering of five entrepreneurial, high-risk ventures. Immediately after graduation, he was hired into IBM’s engineering division, to assist in the development of the fiber optics connector for IBM’s “Token Ring” Local Area Network. After completing this project, he transferred to IBM’s sales and marketing division in Dallas, Texas, where he achieved membership in IBM’s coveted Hundred Percent Club.

In 1991 Mr. Pearse returned to Louisville, where he was chosen to help lead Advanced Production Systems, Inc., a corporation recognized as one of INC. Magazine’s "Fastest Growing Small Companies." This success was followed by the founding of Indigo Moon Productions, Louisville’s, first entertainment game software company where he secured the largest contract AOL (America On-Line) had ever issued for a game.

Mr. Pearse’s penchant for fostering growth of new industries in Louisville continued in 1997, when he was hired to grow and build the infrastructure for the region’s first medical device company, MedVenture Technology Corp., which during his tenure was also recognized as one of INC. Magazine’s "Fastest Growing Small Companies." He was then brought on board to help establish the infrastructure and set the vision for the start-up software company Advanced Image Concepts. Three years later, Advanced Image Concepts was sold to Allscripts Healthcare Solutions, a public company traded on the NASDAQ exchange.

At the time he received the Professional Award in Engineering, Mr. Pearse’s was involved the start-up of one of the first biotechnology companies in Louisville, ApoImmune, Inc. ApoImmune’s technology, licensed from the University of Louisville, used a patient’s own immune system to cure their disease. Under his leadership, the company partnered with Nobel Laureates from the country’s top research universities and received several research grants.  Back to top.

Timothy J. Dinwiddie - 2004

Timothy J. Dinwiddie, P.E., earned Bachelor of Science (19**) and Master of Engineering (19**) degrees from the University of Louisville Department of Mechanical Engineering. He was Vice President & General Manager of Flextronics’ largest Industrial Park in Doumen, People's Republic of China, at the time he was selected to receive the Professional Award in Engineering. Flextronics is the world’s largest Electronics Manufacturing Services (EMS) company in the world, focused on delivering operational services to technology companies. With fiscal year 2004 revenues of USD$14.5 billion, Flextronics is a major global operating company with design, engineering, manufacturing, and logistics operations in 32 countries and five continents. Mr. Dinwiddieis was responsible for running the high-volume production campus in southern China with over three million square feet of manufacturing space, eleven manufacturing facilities, situated on 150 acres of land, with 18,000 employees. Major customers include Microsoft, Motorola, Sony-Ericsson, Dell, IBM, and Casio. Products built on the campus included the Microsoft Xbox, Motorola and Sony-Ericsson mobile phones, Dell and IBM computers. and Casio digital cameras.

Mr. Dinwiddieis joined Flextronics in January 1999 after spending more than 13 years at Motorola in various technical and management positions, both in the United States and Singapore. He first served the Motorola ‘Land Mobile Products Division’ in Plantation, Florida where he held various positions in Research, Design, Process Engineering, Technical Operations and Manufacturing. Eight years later, he was assigned to Singapore as Project and Engineering Manager, Printed Circuit Board Operations. After completing three years in Singapore, he returned to the United States to head the Motorola ‘Paging Systems Group’ in Fort Worth, Texas, where he served as Manufacturing and Technical Operations Manager from January 1997 to December 1998. He earned his Professional Engineering License in Florida, and holds two U.S. patents.  Back to top.

George N. Abrahim, P.E. - 2003

George N. Abrahim, P.E., earned B.Sc. and M.Eng degrees from the University of Louisville Mechanical Engineering Department in 1999 and 2000, respectively. He also holds an MBA from the University of Phoenix. He is a registered Professional Engineer in Pennsylvania and Kentucky.

At the time he received his Professional Award in Engineering, Mr. Abrahim was Vice President and General Manager of the Industrial Consulting (IC) Business Unit at USFilter Engineering & Construction with net annual revenues exceeding $6.5 million. IC is a leader in providing regulatory, engineering, and design/build services to a wide range of industrial clients throughout the United States. Mr. Abrahim was a member of the executive management team and responsible for the overall long-term strategy and direction of the organization, including identification of future potential growth markets, financials, sales, and operations.

Over the course of his career, Mr. Abrahim has held various managerial and technical engineering positions, including start up and growth of a new air quality engineering consulting business for Chester Engineers in Pittsburgh. He was a Project Manager for three years at Law Environmental after a two-year stint as a project engineer for Jefferson County in Louisville, KY. Mr. Abrahim is a member of the National Society of Professional Engineers and Air and Waste Management Associations.  Back to top.

Microrobot designed by Doug Adkins at Sandia National Laboratories. Douglas R. Adkins - 2002

Douglas R. Adkins, Ph.D., was born in Louisville and lived here for 21 years. He graduated from Fairdale High School in 1975, and went on to get a B.Sc. and M.Eng. degrees in Mechanical Engineering at Speed Scientific School in 1979 and 1980. Dr. Adkins earned his Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering at the California Institute of Technology in 1986. Since then, he has worked at Sandia National Laboratories (Albuquerque, NM) in the areas of solar-thermal power conversion, thermal and fluids modeling, sensor technologies, and robotics.

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Perry L. Becker - 2001

NASA's crawler-transporter moving a shuttle toward the launchpad.

Mr. Becker was born and raised in Louisville, and graduated from Butler High School in 1982. He entered UofL’s Speed Scientific School in 1982, and graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree in 1986 and a Master of Engineering degree in 1988. While at Speed he completed three co-op internships with NASA at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida. After graduating from UofL, he accepted a permanent job with NASA at Kennedy Space Center (KSC), Florida, in the fall of 1988.

Throughout Mr. Becker’s career with NASA at KSC he worked in the Ground Systems Division of the Shuttle Processing Directorate. At the he received the PAE , he was Lead Engineer for Shuttle Transporters and Structures. In this role he was responsible for the design, sustaining engineering, operation, and maintenance of the equipment used to move space flight hardware around Launch Complex 39 Area, including the giant Crawler Transporters that actually carry the 18 million pound Space Shuttle and Mobile Launcher Platform from the Vehicle Assembly Building to the launch pads. He was also responsible for several mechanical and structural launch pad systems.

While working at KSC, Mr. Becker attended the Florida Institute of Technology, earning a Master of Business Administration (MBA) degree in 1992. During his career at KSC he received several prominent awards, including the NASA Exceptional Service Medal in 1995 and the NASA Astronauts’ Silver Snoopy Award in 2000.

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Michael T. Beyerle - 2000

Michael T. Beyerle, P.E., Product Manager, is currently responsible for the products and programs that make GE Appliances an innovation leader in the Clothes Care industry. Mr. Beyerle is located at GE Appliance world headquarters at Appliance Park, Louisville, Kentucky.

Mr. Beyerle began his GE career in 1983 as a member of GE’s Edison Engineering training program. After completion of the program in 1985, he joined GE’s Plastic Application Center where he executed theoretical and experimental structural analyses on parts and products for a variety of GE’s businesses. In 1989, he joined GE Appliances’ Refrigeration team where he was responsible for leading productivity design programs to maintain GE’s competitiveness in the appliance marketplace. Two years later he accepted the leadership challenge of standardizing and driving the use of Computer Aided Engineering tools across GE’s Appliance business. He subsequently held engineering leadership positions in GE’s Clothes Care Design and New Product Introduction Teams where he was responsible for the design and implementation of home laundry and cooking products. Mr. Beyerle holds three US patents, and is a licensed Professional Engineer.

Mr. Beyerle graduated from the University of Louisville, Kentucky, with a Bachelor of Science degree in Mechanical Engineering in 1981, and a Master of Engineering degree in 1982.

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Alan A. Kleier - 1999

Alan A. Kleier, Vice President of Texaco Exploration and Production, Inc., is responsible for managing Texaco’s exploration and production interest in the Rocky Mountains, Mid-Continent and East Texas areas. In his current position, he is located in Denver, Colorado.

Mr. Kleier began his career with Texaco in 1977 as a petroleum engineer in the producing department in Ardmore, Oklahoma. After holding positions of increasing responsibility in Oklahoma, he was relocated to Wyoming in 1983 and named Senior Petroleum Engineer. He was later appointed Field Superintendent in Cortez, Colorado. In 1989, he was appointed Area Manager in Farmington, New Mexico. Mr. Kleier was subsequently promoted to Area Superintendent and transferred to Bakersfield, California in 1991. Two years later, he was named Area Manager in Odessa, Texas. In 1996, Kleier was named Assistant Division Manager for the Western California Business Unit – Bakersfield Division. He then served as Business Unit Manager – Midway-Sunset, with responsibility for exploration and production activities in the Midway-Sunset field in California, which was acquired from Monterey Resources in November 1997.

Mr. Kleier graduated from the University of Louisville, Kentucky, with a Bachelor of Science degree in Mechanical Engineering in 1976 and a Master of Engineering degree in 1977.

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Raymond J. Amlung - 1998

At the time he received his ME Department Professional Award in Engineering, Mr. Raymond J. Amlung was Chief Engineer for High Pressure Injection (HPI) Fuel Systems at Cummins Engine Company, in Columbus, Indiana. Mr. Amlung received Bachelor of Science and Master of Engineering degrees in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Louisville Speed Scientific School in 1980 and 1982, respectively.

Upon graduation from Speed Scientific School, Mr. Amlung joined Cummins Engine Company as a Field Test Engineer for a new engine program. He then progressed through a series of technical service positions in the Fuel Systems, Electronics and Base Engine areas. In 1990, he became Director of Service Engineering for High Horsepower Engines, and in 1995 was named Chief Engineer of High Horsepower HPI Fuel Systems. The scope of his duties were expanded in 1997 to include all HPI engineering.

Mr. Amlung has maintained close ties with Speed School since graduation. Currently, he is the Corporate Sponsor for recruiting of Speed School students, of which over 60 are currently employed by Cummins. He has led efforts to provide Cooperative Education opportunities for Speed School Students and has secured Cummins sponsorship of various student activities including SAE Formula Car and Baja Buggy competitions as well as annual tours of Cummins. He has also taught several classes on various engine and fuel system topics for UofL’s SAE student chapter.

Mr. Amlung and his wife Alesia have three children. His activities in Columbus include coaching youth baseball and teaching children’s religious education at his church.

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John L. Finn - 1997

Mr. John L. Finn is presently General Manager, Industrial Fan Division of Howden Fan Company in Buffalo, New York. Mr. Finn received the Bachelor of Science and Master of Science degrees in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Louisville Speed Scientific School in 1962 and 1973. He also earned a Master of Science in Business Administration from the University of Akron in 1968. Mr. Finn graduated from the Executive Operations Management Program from the University of Virginia in 1977.

Upon graduation from Speed School, Mr. Finn was employed by Babcock & Wilcox in various positions from Performance Engineer to Manger, Fossil Power Generation Purchasing. In 1973, he became Manager of Operations at American Air Filter. Returning to Babcock & Wilcox in 1975, Mr. Finn was in successive managerial positions until he became President of TLT-Babcock in 1986. In 1989, he moved to Howden Sirocco, Inc. as President and then to Novenco Fans, Inc. as General Manager of Canadian Operations and Senior Vice President of North American Operations.

Mr. Finn was selected for Who’s Who in U.S. Executives in 1990. He was also inducted into the University of Louisville Athletic Hall of Fame in 1987, where he participated in football, basketball, and track. He was captain of the football team in 1961 and was third team All-American that year. The Chicago Bears and the Boston Patriots selected him in the draft, of which he signed with the Bears. While in school he served as Vice Chairman of ASME, was a member of the Student Senate, and was Secretary of the Senior Class.

He maintains his interest in athletics and young people through coaching basketball, football and the Advisory Committee for Religious Education in Wadsworth, Ohio. He is President of the youth football league, high school instructor for religious education, member of the Parish Council and President and Member of the Board of Directors of Rawiga Country Club. He has also taught at Kent State University.

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Denis J. Stemmle, Sr. - 1996

Mr. Denis J. Stemmle, Sr., is presently Director of Mechanical Engineering for Pitney Bowes, the market leader in postage meters and mail handling and processing equipment with current revenues of $4 billion. He is responsible for product development and design, with a staff of 45 mechanical engineers.

Before joining Pitney Bowes, Mr. Stemmle founded QuadMark, Ltd., and raised $10 million in venture capital. He assembled and led a team of 43 mechanical, electronic, and software engineers to develop and market the world’s smallest portable copier based on 13 of Mr. Stemmle’s patents. In 1994, QuadMark launched the Passport, a battery operated copier about the size of a carton of eggs, able to make copies anywhere, anytime. Mr. Stemmle served as Vice President of Engineering.

Prior to starting QuadMark, Ltd., Mr. Stemmle was principal engineer at Xerox Corporation; where, over a period of 23 years, he led 12 technical teams in developing technologies and designing copier and printer products and accessory equipment. He has been granted total of 68 US Patents. Thirty-eight of his patented inventions have been incorporated in commercial products have earned over $1 billion in revenues. While with Xerox, Mr. Stemmle was sent to England for 2.5 years to create and lead a 30-person development laboratory for output device technology.

Mr. Stemmle graduated Cum Laude from Speed School in 1968 with a Bachelor of Mechanical Engineering Degree. In that same year, he received a Bachelor of Arts Degree from Bellarmine College.

Mr. Stemmle and his wife, Dee, have been married for 32 years. They spent more than 25 years teaching seminars on "How to Achieve Excellence in Marriage". They have four children and live in Milford, Connecticut.

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L. Hill Clark - 1995

L. Hill Clark is presently Executive Vice President of the Crane Company in Elyria, Ohio. The Crane Company, with annual sales exceeding $1.6 billion, is a diversified manufacturer of engineered industrial products and the largest American distributor of doors, windows and millwork. Crane Company employs over 10,700 people in North America, Europe, Asia and Australia.

Mr. Clark received his Bachelor’s degree from Speed School in 1969 from the Mechanical Engineering Department. From 1975 to 1990, he worked for Allied Signal, Bendix Engine Controls Division, holding positions of Project Development Engineer, Senior Project Engineer, Engineering Lab Supervisor, Operations Manager, Manufacturing Manager, Marketing Manager, and Plant Manager. In 1990 he moved to Crane Company, Lear Romec Division as its President and in 1993-94 was Group Vice President. In 1994 Mr. Clark became Executive Vice President.  Back to top.

William E. Essig - 1994

At the time he received his Professional Award in Engineering, Mr. William E. Essig served a dual role at Rockwell International as Manager of Advanced Manufacturing Engineering Technology Development Laboratory and Implementation Plan Leader for the Mars Environmental Survey program (lander). He received a Master of Science degree in Mechanical Engineering in 1976 from Speed School. Bill also attended the Graduate Business School at the University of Southern California from 1962-1966. He is MTM certified and is a licensed professional mechanical engineer.

Prior joining Rockwell International, Mr. Essig was employed by Bendix, Aviation Division in South Bend, Indiana, General Dynamics, Astronautics Division in San Diego, California, and International Telephone and Telegraph, Federal Electric Division in Moses Lake, Washington. He began his career with Rockwell International in 1962 as a design engineer and has progressed to the current dual role in the Space Systems Division in Downey, California. Mr. Essig has 35+ years experience in commercial, military/defense, and space-related technical design, production and implementation, control and cost performance. He has served as principal investigator on IR&D projects that developed methods required to integrate the enterprise, including concurrent engineering. He served as project engineer on Air Force Integrated Manufacturing Incentive Projects, leading a team of 22 Rockwell engineers and two major sub-contractors in two Air Force programs from development to production. He has led engineering support for the SABER Brilliant Eyes, Brilliant Pebbles, Small Satellite and Mars Global Surveyor programs. Mr. Essig directed production engineering supports for the conceptual design and design-to-cost techniques on the MX program, later called the Peacekeeper. He designed mechanical components and assemblies for space applications on the Apollo program. In 1994, Bill was selected as the Rockwell International, Space Systems Division Engineer of the Year.

Bill Essig is married to Kay Essig.

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Gerald G. Grattan - 1993

In April 1993, Gerald Grattan became Deputy Executive Director of the Crane Division, Naval Surface Warfare Center. He received his Bachelor of Mechanical Engineering in 1962, his Master of Engineering in 1963 and a Juris Doctor in 1967, all from the University of Louisville.

Mr. Grattan was a Project Engineer for Design on MK/25 Mod 2 Torpedo Tube from 1962-1965 and Project Engineer for applying Glass Reinforced Plastic to Navy use in 1965-1967. He served on the SSEB for AEGIS in 1968, and was Project Engineer for the Lance Missile Conversion Study, Chaffroc, from 1971-1972. During the Vietnam War, Mr. Grattan was Director of the Intensive Care Unit for Guns. In 1973-1974 he was the Manager of the 5/MK 42 Gun Branch, GSED, Naval Ordnance Station, Louisville (NOSL). In 1974-1979 he was the Manager of the Major Caliber Light Weight Gun Branch, GSED of NOSL. He became the Manager of the Production Engineering Branch, Industrial Department at NOSL in 1979-1980. In 1980-1981 he was the Manager of the MK 45/MK 75 Gun Branch, GSED of NOSL.

From 1981-1989 Mr. Grattan was the Deputy Director of GSED of NOSL. During this time he was double hatted as the SSEB Element Chairman for the Navy Gun Fire Support Study in 1984, and he was Manager for the Gun Division, GSED, NOSL in 1987. In 1989 he was promoted to the Director of the Planning Department, NOSL. In 1990 he became the Director of the Gun Weapons Systems Department, NOSL. He also served in a double hatted position as the Deputy Technical Director of NOSL in 1991. In 1992 he became the Director of the Gun Weapons Systems Directorate, Crane Division, Naval Surface Warfare Center.

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Peter R. Dawkins, 1979, Mechanical Engineering - 1992

Peter R. Dawkins, 1979, Mechanical Engineering. Mr. Dawkins' biography is missing.  Back to top.

Frederick T. Venhoff - 1991

Mr. Fred Venhoff received the Bachelor of Science degree in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Louisville Speed Scientific School. In May of 1973, he received the Master of Engineering in Mechanical Engineering degree after completing his thesis work at Speed School. Upon graduation, he began his professional engineering career with Cummins Engine Company Incorporated, the largest independent manufacturer of diesel engines in the world.

Since joining Cummins at their world headquarters in Columbus, Indiana, he has held a variety of positions in engineering, manufacturing, and marketing. In 1987 he became the General Manager for North American OEM Industrial Markets. Today, Mr. Venhoff is Executive Director and General Manager for Industrial Markets which accounts for nearly $300 million in revenue each year for Cummins Engine Company. He has overall business responsibility for marketing, sales, service, engineering, and distributor support for the full product range (90 to 2000 horsepower) of diesel engines specified in mobile off-highway equipment. His responsibility for the Cummins distribution system includes providing technical support and guidance for equipment manufacturers serving these key off-highway markets as well as vocational and highway trucks, military vehicles and equipment, fire pumps, recreational vehicles, motor homes, buses, generator sets, power units, and a wide variety of other stationary and mobile equipment markets.

Mr. Venhoff is an active member of several professional associations and participates on committees of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers, Society of Automotive Engineers, Construction and Industrial Manufacturers Association, American Mining Congress, and the Farm and Industrial Equipment Institute. He is a member of the Board of Directors for the Associated Equipment Dealers Foundation and Committee Chairman for the Auxiliary to the Equipment Manufacturers Institute.

When business activities and travel permits, Mr. Venhoff is involved in church and community activities such as District Commissioner for the Boy Scouts of America, Columbus Parks and Recreation Youth Sports Coach, Church Leader for the Indianapolis Archdiocese Fund, Committee Chairman for the Columbus High School Booster Club, Finance Chairman for the Hoosier Trails Cub Scouts, and Junior-High Technical Advisor for the SAE Solar Sprint Car Competition.

Mr. Venhoff and his wife, Patricia, were born, raised and educated in Louisville and frequently return to Louisville to visit with family and friends. They have two children, Alicia and Wesley, who have lived in Indiana since birth but are devoted Louisville Cardinal fans often seen displaying the University of Louisville Cardinal pride amongst the Indiana University, Purdue, and Notre Dame fans in Southern Indiana.

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James C. Deddens - 1990

Mr. Deddens was a Louisville native, graduating from St. Xavier high School in 1945. He served two years in the United States Army after which he enrolled at the University of Louisville Speed Scientific School. Mr. Deddens received his Bachelor of Mechanical Engineering degree in 1952 and a Master’s degree in Mechanical Engineering in 1953.

While in the graduate school at Speed, Mr. Deddens was accepted into the Oak Ridge School of Reactor Technology at the Tennessee National Laboratory. The School of Reactor Technology was a graduate level non-degree granting program to train a cadre of nuclear engineers to support former President Eishenhower’s Atoms for Peace Program which subsequently led to the commercialization of nuclear energy in the United States. He completed this program in 1954 and marked the beginning of his career in commercial nuclear power by going to work for the Babcock & Wilcox Company’s fledgling Atomic Energy Division.

His first assignment at Babcock & Wilcox was the reactor physics core design of the Consolidated Edison Company’s India Point Unit #1, the first privately financed nuclear energy plant in the United States. Later he was named start-up engineer for this plant.

When nuclear power began its rapid expansion in the 1960s, Mr. Deddens was assigned to develop a service organization to support start-up, field and training services for Babcock & Wilcox’s nuclear customers. In 1974 he was named Manager of the Engineering Department with responsibility for the detailed design and licensing of all reactors and fuel supplied by Babcock & Wilcox and for nuclear research and development programs related to commercial reactor development. In 1978 he was named Manager of the Project Management Department and in 1980 Manager of the Business Integration Department and to develop new strategies to meet the changing demands of the nuclear energy field.

Mr. Deddens' his first love remained power plants and equipment and the engineering challenges associated with safe and reliable operations, so in 1983 he accepted the position of Vice President – River Bend Nuclear Group at Gulf States Utilities Company. There he assumed responsibility for integrating construction completion with pre-operational testing, staffing, licensing and start-up of the River Bend Nuclear Power Plant. In January 1987, he was promoted to his present position of Senior Vice President responsible for all aspects of River Bend operations and is the senior nuclear officer at Gulf States Utilities. He is a registered professional engineer in Virginia and Louisiana and in 1978 was named Engineer of the Year by the Virginia Section of the National Society of Professional Engineers. He has written many technical papers and reports in the nuclear energy field and is a member of ASME, ANS, AIF, EEI’s Nuclear Power Advisor Committee, USCEA’s Technical Issues Committee, EEI’s Utility Nuclear Waste and Transportation Program Committee, NUMARC’s Severe Accident Working Group and the American Technical Institute’s Board of Trustees.

Mr. Deddens was married to the late Mary Lee Wright, also a University of Louisville graduate. He has four children and several grandchildren.

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John Thoms Riester - 1989

Mr. John Thomas “Jack” Riester is President of Service Products Company, a subsidiary of Cummins Engine Company. He has been employed by Cummins, in a variety of positions since 1963.

Mr. Riester began his career with Cummins as International Service Coordinator, where he was Staff Assistant to the Vice President of Service. The following year, he served as Service and Field Service Engineer (1964-1965). As part of a start up team, he was assigned to Krupp-Cummins joint venture in Essen, Germany. He was Manager of several divisions from (1966-1973), including Highway Service, Service Practices, Business Planning and Marketing Services. As Manager, he was responsible for a variety of jobs such as Field Service Operations in Eastern, Southern and the Mid-Western Regions and the establishment of the service criteria for engines which included the design and development of service equipment, etc. As Division Manger (1973-1976), he was head of the Eastern division of sales, service and franchise management in the eastern U.S. During this time, Cummins’ market share rose from 33% to 42%. He was ranked as No. 1 Division Manager. As General Manager (1976-1977), his major accomplishments were the redesign of warranty coverage, policy program and administrative controls which resulted in reduced financial exposure and increased customer satisfaction. As Executive Director of Worldwide Service (1978-1983), he was responsible for forming a highly responsive product problem detection and correction system and reduced warranty and policy 35%. Since 1983, he has served as President of Service Products Company where he manages the development and introduction of high-tech transportation products. The 1988 sales for this subsidiary totaled $39,000,000. He is the key individual in Cummins management staff for planning new businesses.

Mr. Riester serves on the Board of CADEC Systems, Inc. and Hitachi Metals, Inc. He is also involved in various community projects. He is Chairman on the Board of Trustees for Indiana Vocational Technical Institute, serves on the Youth Education Committee at St. Bartholomew’s Church, and is the Youth Soccer and Hockey coach.

He received a Bachelor of Science degree in Mechanical Engineering (1962) from the Speed Scientific School at the University of Louisville, and a Program for Management Development certificate (1970) from Harvard Graduate School of Business.

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Henry P. Conn - 1988

At the time he received the ME Department Professional Award in Engineering, Henry Conn was President and Chief Executive Officer of Tarkenton Conn and Company. He remains a globally recognized expert on strategic approaches to improving productivity, quality and profitability. He has been a frequent adviser/consultant to such companies as Ford Motor Company, General Motors, TRW, Sara Lee, Upjohn, GTE, AT&T, as well as the U.S. General Accounting Office.

Mr. Conn began his career with the Ford Motor Company. and in 1968 he was appointed Facilities Engineering Supervisor for the construction and start-up of the Louisville Heavy Truck Assembly Plant. In 1975 he was named Corporate Director of Manufacturing Engineering Services at Allis-Chalmers in Milwaukee. In 1978 he was appointed General Manager of the Service Division of Seimens-Allis, Inc., in Atlanta. Later he joined TRW as Corporate Vice President of Productivity. His implementation of productivity improvement strategies at TRW gained him respect as one of the most successful and visible productivity leaders in the nation. His long term strategic approach for TRW was endorsed by the American Productivity Center and used as a model by many other corporations. At Tarkenton Conn and Company, Mr. Conn provides the perspective of internal corporate and line management and the proven ability to help corporations of all sizes in human performance management.

Mr. Conn serves on the Advisory Council for the American Productivity Center, the White House Conference on Productivity, and is a member of the Board of Directors of the American Productivity Management Association. Mr. Conn serves on the Board of Trustees and Executive Committee of the Work in Northeast Ohio Council. He is a member of the American Management Association, The Association of MBA Executives, the Computer & Automated Systems Association. The Robot Institute of America, The Society of Automotive Engineers, The Society of Manufacturing Engineers, Methods Time Measurement Association, and the World Trade Association. He is a registered Professional Engineer in several states.

A native of Louisville, Kentucky, Mr. Conn received a Bachelor of Science degree in Mechanical Engineering (1964), a Master of Business Administration degree (1969), and a Master of Engineering in Mechanical Engineering (1972) from the University of Louisville.

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Randall C. Fowler - 1987

Dr. Randall C. Fowler is the President and Chief Executive Officer of Indetix, Inc., a manufacturer of a positive identification system based on an electronic fingerprint verification system. This relatively new and growing company is the result of Dr. Fowler’s many years development of a practical, computerized, (and patented) fingerprint scanning device. Applications include security control devices, computer security screens, automated teller machines, and other positive identification uses. Under Dr. Fowler’s direction, Indetix experienced a many-fold increase in sales. Prior to founding Identix, Dr. Fowler was Vice President and General Manager for Flow Industries, Inc., where he directed the research, development and application of high technology devices for various governmental and private customers. He also served as Manager of Energy and Technology Operations for the Energy and Environmental Division of Acurex Corporation, Manager of Applied Technology at Systems Development Corporation, Founder and President of RCF Systems, Inc., Project Manager for TRW Systems; and Assistant Professor of Mechanical Engineering at San Jose State College.

Dr. Fowler is a member of the American Electronics Association, the American Management Association, and Chairman of the International Biometrics Association. Dr. Fowler received his B.S. degree in Mechanical Engineering in 1962; completed his Master’s degree at Arizona State University, and received the Doctorate in Engineering from Stanford University.

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