Engineering alums gain honors
The University of Nebraska Alumni Association announced its spring 2009 slate of annual award recipients, with several College of Engineering graduates earning recognition.
DISTINGUISHED SERVICE AWARD
Robert W. Brightfelt earned both of his degrees in mechanical engineering ('65 B.S. and '67 M.S.) at UNL. He was a founder and member of the board of directors of Dade Behring, Inc., a $1.8 billion global clinical diagnostics company that develops, manufactures, sells and services equipment and test reagents for more than 30,000 hospital laboratories. He retired as a group president of Dade Behring in 2002, after serving more than 36 years in the health care industry, including 29 years with the DuPont Co. Brightfelt continues to work part-time as a consultant in the health care industry and is a member of the Chicago Architecture Foundation Auxiliary Board, chair of the Dean's Advisory Board of the UNL College of Engineering, and a trustee of the University of Nebraska Foundation.
OUTSTANDING INTERNATIONAL ALUMNUS AWARD
Ram Goel,'71, a native of India, is president of Soney FM LLC, an engineering consulting company in Tampa, Fla. A professional engineer in New York, Utah, California, Georgia, South Carolina, Michigan, Nevada and Florida, he has 40 years of professional engineering work experience on hydroelectric projects, nuclear power plants, oil refineries, bridges, buildings, land developments and more. Goel is a Fellow of the American Society of Civil Engineers and recipient of the 2006 Hind Rattan (Jewel of India) Award for NRIs (non-resident Indians) for Outstanding Services, Achievements and Contributions, presented by the former prime minister of India.
OUTSTANDING ALUMNUS AWARD
Ken Jones is founder of Automated Call Processing Corp., (1983), Ditech Communications (1990) and Globe Wireless (1999). Globe provides communications services to ships at sea using satellites and a global network of high-frequency radio stations. Jones, a Lincoln native who received his bachelor's degree in chemical engineering from the College of Engineering in 1968, is a member of the Engineering Dean's Advisory Board and a trustee for the NU Foundation; he supports engineering scholarships and academic programs, and is active in the Engineering Learning Community trip. He lives on the California coast near Half Moon Bay, where he has served as president of the local school board for 12 years.
YOUNG ALUMNI AWARD
Anthony Baumgart, B.S. '06 and M.S. '08, is a manufacturing engineer for BD Medical in Columbus. In an interview with the Daily Nebraskan, Baumgart said he "manages costs, streamlines processes and finds alternative materials to cut costs" for the medical technology company.
He became an Engineering Ambassador, introducing prospective students and families to Nebraska Engineering, when he was a junior majoring in Industrial and Management Systems Engineering. He grew in this role to serve as campus visit coordinator for the College of Engineering while he pursued his master's degree.