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Home : Volume 25 : Fall 1998 :
Distinguished Service Award for Raymond L. Degner

Raymond L. Degner

Raymond L. Degner
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Ray Degner thought early retirement would mean more traveling, fishing, skiing and searching out antiques. Instead, it has found him leading the formation of Paragon Systems, a management buyout of the Flat Panel Display Equipment Division from Lam Research.

Undertaking such a venture does not leave much time for R & R, but Degner has found the work fresh, educational and invigorating. In the process, he is also living up to his personal definition of success: "Working to one's potential, leading a balanced life and being happy with one's life and accomplishments."

Some of these accomplishments include working his way through his BS, MS and PhD degrees in mechanical engineering at what he says are "two of the best engineering schools in the country"--UW-Madison and Stanford.

Degner's academic accomplishments launched him into a successful career as an engineer, engineering manager and corporate executive. He currently holds three patents related to the semiconductor industry.

His career began in 1971 developing capital equipment for manufacturing polished silicon wafers. After working at three other high-technology companies in Silicon Valley, Degner joined Lam Research Corporation as vice president of engineering in 1984.

During his 14-year tenure with Lam, the semiconductor capital equipment company grew from $20 million to more than $1 billion in sales--the fifth largest in the world. Plasma etch technology, developed under Degner's leadership, is used worldwide in manufacturing semiconductors and has recently been adapted for flat panel displays embodied in advanced notebook computers, desktop monitors and television screens.


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