Twelve alumni to receive College of Engineering’s highest honor

March 18, 2019

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — Twelve Penn State engineering graduates will be honored April 8 at the College of Engineering’s 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:

  • Jack Shearer Brenizer Jr., of Port Matilda, Pennsylvania, professor emeritus of nuclear engineering (retired) at Penn State. He earned a doctorate degree in nuclear engineering in 1981.
  • Gary Butler, of York, Pennsylvania, president and CEO of Precision Custom Components, LLC. He earned a bachelor’s degree in industrial engineering in 1971.
  • Jiayu Chen, of Palo Alto, California, vice president of engineering and advanced technologies at Gynesonics. He earned a doctorate degree in electrical engineering in 1993.
  • Timothy Davis, of Trumansburg, New York, executive vice president and chief technology officer (retired) of Kionix, Inc. He earned a bachelor’s degree in engineering science and mechanics in 1986.
  • Timothy Kowalski, of Chalfont, Pennsylvania, president and CEO of Halfpenny Technologies, Inc. He earned a bachelor’s degree in computer science in 1982.
  • Joel Madison, of Reno, Nevada, chief operating officer of Sierra Nevada Corporation. He earned a master’s degree in aerospace engineering in 1988.
  • Fred McLaren, of Placerville, California, president and CEO (retired) of McLaren/Hart Environmental Engineering, Inc. He earned bachelor’s degrees in both civil engineering and sanitary (environmental) engineering in 1962.
  • John O’Keefe, of North Potomac, Maryland, executive vice president and chief operating officer of Clark Construction Group, LLC, and chief executive officer of Guy F. Atkinson Construction, LLC, a subsidiary of Clark Construction Group. He earned a bachelor’s degree in architectural engineering in 1987.
  • Brian Olsavsky, of Mercer Island, Washington, senior vice president and chief financial officer at Amazon. He earned a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering in 1985.
  • Terri Ruch, of Silver Spring, Maryland, national energy engineer at the United States Department of Agriculture, Natural Resources Conservation Service. She earned a bachelor’s degree in agricultural engineering in 1987.
  • Eric Schnur, of Kirtland Hills, Ohio, president, chairman and CEO of The Lubrizol Corporation. He earned a bachelor’s degree in chemical engineering in 1989.
  • Alan Snyder, of Center Valley, Pennsylvania, vice president and associate provost, research and graduate studies at Lehigh University. He earned a bachelor’s degree in engineering science in 1978 and a doctorate degree in bioengineering in 1987.

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.

Last Updated March 26, 2019