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Home : Volume 24 : Fall 1997 :
Distinguished Service Award for Joel G. Funk

Joel G. Funk

Joel G. Funk
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For almost three decades, Joel Funk has been using his electrical engineering skills to bridge many disciplines at Alcoa Company's Davenport (Iowa) Works. While his technical adeptness has played a key role in the company's success, equally important have been his keen managerial skills. Funk has gained a reputation for hiring the best employees, interacting well with colleagues, and keeping projects on difficult schedules and within budget. When a project seems to be falling behind schedule or a difficult deadline has to be met, Funk's guidance and leadership is often sought.

Funk began his career at Alcoa in 1970, shortly after earning his BS in electrical engineering from UW-Madison. One of his first responsibilities was improving, developing and implementing process control and automation systems at the Davenport facility. From 1971 to 1973 he transferred to the construction and design group at Alcoa's corporate office in Pennsylvania and then to the construction of a smelting plant in Kentucky. He then returned to Davenport and subsequently received promotions to senior electrical engineer, division electrical engineer and chief electrical engineer. Since becoming chief engineer for advanced manufacturing in 1991, Funk has been responsible for insuring that the best technologies and concepts are used. Recently, this has included state-of-the-art equipment for the cleaning and processing of litho sheet, heat treating of aerospace materials and the movement of plant materials. In addition, he is responsible for the plant's utilities systems, plant environmental requirements and reducing utility costs. Multi-million dollar projects are the norm for Funk and his central engineering group.

At Alcoa, Funk has been formally recognized for his work with numerous complex projects. He's also received the Arthur Vining Davis Award for Technical Excellence and the Distinguished Achievement Award for his contribution to the 100-inch Mill installation. He has been a member of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers since graduation from UW-Madison.


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