12 alumni to receive College of Engineering's highest honor

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — Twelve Penn State engineering graduates will be honored April 14 at the annual Outstanding Engineering Alumni Awards ceremony at the Nittany Lion Inn on the University Park campus.

Established in 1966, the Outstanding Engineering Alumni Award is the highest honor bestowed by the College of Engineering and recognizes graduates who have reached exceptional levels of professional achievement.

This year’s recipients are:

  • Ed Auslander, of Cary, North Carolina, president and CEO of LORD Corporation. He earned a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering in 1985.
  • James Erickson, of State College, CEO of Blue Mountain Quality Resources Inc. He earned a master’s degree in bioengineering in 1987.
  • John Johns, of Alexandria, Virginia, deputy assistant secretary of defense (maintenance), Department of Defense. He earned his bachelor’s degree in aerospace engineering in 1982.
  • Ganesh Kailasam, of Midland, Michigan, senior vice president and chief technology officer, Dow Corning Corporation. He earned a doctorate degree in chemical engineering in 1991.
  • Miranda Keeney, of Mechanicsburg, senior fellow, LMI. She earned her master’s and doctorate degrees in industrial engineering in 1991 and 1996, respectively.
  • Jean Lydon-Rodgers, of Mason, Ohio, president and CEO, military systems, GE Aviation. She earned a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering in 1985.
  • Sam McLaughlin, of Mercersburg, external research manager, Volvo Group. He earned his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in agricultural engineering in 1980 and 1983, respectively.
  • Don Moul, of Akron, Ohio, senior vice president, fossil operations and environmental, FirstEnergy. He earned a bachelor’s degree in nuclear engineering in 1987.
  • John Onufrak, of South Dartmouth, Massachusetts, founding partner (retired), National Development. He earned a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering in 1971.
  • Russell Sykes, of Royal Oak, Michigan, managing partner, SmithGroupJJR Inc. He earned a bachelor of architectural engineering in 1985.
  • Howard Witham, of Coppell, Texas, vice president of Texas operations, Corvo. He earned a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering in 1985, a master’s degree in engineering science in 1988 and a doctorate degree in engineering science and mechanics in 1993.
  • Wilson Xu, of Hillsborough, California, executive vice president, engineering, Palo Alto Networks. He earned a master’s degree in computer science and engineering in 1999.

In addition to receiving their awards, the alumni will meet with faculty, staff and students; serve as guest speakers in classes; and tour facilities during their visits to campus.

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Last Updated April 04, 2016