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College honors 16 at Oct. 18 Engineers' Day

The College of Engineering will honor 16 faculty, staff and alumni Oct. 18 during its 55th Engineers' Day banquet at the Monona Terrace Convention Center. The day-long celebration also includes the dedication of the new Engineering Centers Building. Visit the Engineers' Day website for further details.

Faculty and staff honorees include:


John C. Wright

John C. Wright (large image)

Benjamin Smith Reynolds Award for Excellence in Teaching Engineers
John C. Wright
Professor, Chemistry

To say that John Wright teaches chemistry would be an understatement. Rather, for more than two decades, he has explored and refined cooperative, hands-on learning approaches in which he challenges students to work hard and inspires in them intellectual curiosity, respect for scientific inquiry and genuine interest in chemistry.

Often, pre-engineers comprise more than 50 percent of Wright's freshman honors course, "General and Analytical Chemistry" (Chemistry 110; now 329); about half the students in Chemistry 223 ("Analytical Chemistry") are chemical engineers. All told, he has taught eight courses of varying difficulty. And to each, Wright brings his belief that students are highly capable, interesting individuals.

"He engages [his students] in genuine dialogue, by listening to them with care and by responding, not by giving answers, but by drawing on his huge fund of 'pedagogical content knowledge' and then challenging them to meet very high expectations," says an associate.

Not only does Wright study how students learn and apply those findings to his courses, he also continually assesses his methods' success. One extensive study generated the paper, "A novel strategy for assessing the effects of curriculum reform on student competence," published in the Journal of Chemical Education. Twenty-five faculty outside of chemistry, including nine from engineering, helped assess competence for this major study.

But the hundreds of students who have learned in his classes provide even greater evidence of Wright's teaching triumphs. "I entered his class shy, quiet, fearful of making mistakes, and lacking the confidence to share my opinions," says a former chemical engineering student. "I left it willing to make mistakes in public, able to learn from them, and far more confident in the validity and worth of my thoughts and opinions. ... It remains a defining moment in my education; one that I wish every student could experience."

Recipient of the Chancellor's Excellence in Teaching Award in 1994, Wright joined the UW-Madison faculty in 1972. He earned a bachelor's degree in physics from Union College, Schenectady, New York, in 1965; and a PhD in physics from Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, in 1970; and completed postdoctoral work at Purdue University.


Leonard F. Black

Leonard F. Black (large image)

Bollinger Academic Staff Distinguished Achievement Award
Leonard Franklin Black
Director, Wisconsin Tech-Search

This is the information age. And though mountains of information are more accessible to each of us than ever before, hunting for exactly what you want can be daunting if not impossible without a guide. Bollinger award winner and Wisconsin TechSearch Director Lenny Black leads information expeditions through uncharted reams and untold gigabits, tracking and capturing for hundreds of companies across Wisconsin and the United States.

Wisconsin TechSearch (WTS) is the information outreach program of the college's Kurt F. Wendt Library. Each year, Black and his staff field about 35,000 inquiries for manufacturers, chemical companies, law firms and many others. Often these requests come as rush or super-rush orders, but as many clients will affirm, Black and his staff do an unparalleled job of delivering complete answers on deadline.

Under Black's leadership, WTS's annual revenue has more than quadrupled from $190,000 to more than $1,000,000 in 2002. Key to this growth was Black's ability to keep his service current through a period of rapid and remarkable change in information technologies and engineering fields. He and his staff promote WTS off campus through personal contacts, trade fairs and other promotional events. All the while, he takes personal interest in delivering just the right information package that his clients demand. In the last two years, WTS has moved rapidly from paper to delivering electronic documents directly to clients' desktops.

A dedicated professional, Black shares his years of experience with students through class lectures. He was an initial member of the librarian teaching team for EPD 151, Technical Information Resources, and continues as a guest lecturer in the School of Library and Information Studies each semester.

Black earned his BS in English Literature from UW-Madison in 1970 and attended graduate school at the University of Washington, Seattle. He returned to UW-Madison and earned and MS in library Science in 1975. He worked as a reference librarian at Memorial Library before joining WTS as assistant director in 1975. During the 1978-79 academic year, he took a leave of absence to become the interim director of the UW Geology and Geophysics Library. Black was appointed director of Wisconsin TechSearch in 1992.


James A. Dumesic

James A. Dumesic (large image)

Byron Bird Award for Excellence in a Research Publication
James A. Dumesic
Steenbock Professor of Chemical Engineering

The 2002 Byron Bird Award for Excellence in a Research Publication is presented to Steenbock Professor of Chemical Engineering James Dumesic for his work in microkinetic modeling. The study of reaction kinetics reveals information about the rate at which change takes place and the mechanism by which the reactants in a chemical process are converted to the products. In a series of five papers, Dumesic provides unique insight into how to construct microscopic kinetics and thermodynamics for an entire set of elementary reaction steps characterizing the complex reaction network of several industrially important catalytic chemical processes. Dumesic conducted studies and developed a comprehensive approach that can quantify reaction rates for isobutane conversion over a wide temperature range and over different zeolite materials. This pioneering approach for extracting quantitative chemical information about hydrocarbon reactions on solid acid catalysts identified a variety of conditions under which reliable reaction kinetics data can be collected.

He and his group also illustrated how microkinetic analysis can be applied to a test problem with excellent predictive results. His textbook on microkinetics has become a classic and is widely considered the definitive reference on microkinetic modeling.

Dumesic has led the whole field of catalysis to many successes. Most notably, he introduced microcalorimetry which colleagues say has led the field to new depths of understanding for numerous catalytic reaction mechanisms.

As one of the most decorated scientists in the field of catalysis and chemical engineering in general, he has been recognized with the Colburn Award and Wilhelm Award from the American Institute of Chemical Engineers, the Emmett Award from the North American Catalysis Society and the New York and Michigan Catalysis Awards. In 1998, he was elected to the National Academy of Engineering. Recently, he was appointed as one of the two associate editors of the Journal of Catalysis. He is a recipient of several teaching awards, including the Benjamin Smith Reynolds Award.

Dumesic joined the Department of Chemical Engineering in 1976. He served two terms as chair. He earned his BS from UW-Madison and his MS and PhD from Stanford University.


Robert D. Lorenz

Robert D. Lorenz (large image)

Ragnar E. Onstad Service to Society Award
Robert D. Lorenz
Professor, Electrical and Computer Engineering and Mechanical Engineeering

Within the past decade, Robert Lorenz has visited India, Nepal, Pakistan, Mexico, Cameroon, Malawi, Zimbabwe and Kenya, sometimes staying abroad for three weeks or more.

Such trips sound like exotic vacations, but Lorenz traveled to each locale with a medical mission in mind. For 30 years, he has played an active role in the Medical Benevolence Foundation (MBF), which supports the U.S. Presbyterian Church's worldwide medical programs with funds, equipment, medical supplies and volunteers.

In Mexico, Lorenz helped set up a dental clinic; in Africa, he helped upgrade mission hospital computers, set up E-mail and train staff to use a service that delivers up-to-date medical information monthly on CDs. And when he became president of MBF's board of trustees in 1993, Lorenz, his wife, Sally, and others traveled to India, Pakistan and Nepal to see firsthand how the organization could assist mission hospitals there. In each case, travel was at his expense. And always, his question was, "How can I help?"

At home, Lorenz exuberantly speaks to congregations throughout the Midwest to encourage their involvement in and support of MBF. In addition to his presidency, he has held several leadership positions within the foundation, including his current status as a member of its board of trustees.

"Bob's leadership, administrative skills and presentation and interpretation skills have inspired many individuals and audiences to support medical mission projects and MBF. His commitment to and enthusiasm for Christian ministry continue to be a great help to the cause of MBF," says Rev. Daniel Force, MBF executive director.

Outside of MBF, Lorenz developed and led for nine years a hands-on community service program, including annual involvements in the Dane County Paint-a-Thon and Habitat for Humanity for the Lower Wisconsin River, for the Madison Horizons Rotary Club.

Lorenz received his BS, MS and PhD in mechanical engineering from UW-Madison and holds an MBA from the University of Rochester (New York) Executive Development Program. He joined the College of Engineering in 1984. He and Sally have three children: Becky, married to Derek Peterson; Carolyn; and Steve, married to Rose.

Alumni honorees include:

2002 Distinguished Service Award Recipients


Richard L. Antoine

Richard L. Antoine (large image)

Richard L. Antoine
Global Human Resources Officer
The Procter & Gamble Company

Richard Antoine joined one of the country's most admired corporations, Procter & Gamble, right after graduating from UW-Madison in 1969. He started as a soap process supervisor in Chicago, but quickly found himself ascending the ranks of the household goods company. His technical and managerial skills were recognized early in his career when he was appointed as one of the youngest plant managers in the company's history, with responsibility for P&G's largest production volume site.

In 1992, Antoine assumed responsibility for P&G's North American supply system, including 40 manufacturing plants, as well as engineering, purchasing and distribution divisions. He then went to Asia, where he oversaw similar responsibilities for 15 countries. From 1999 to 2001, he had responsibility for the company's Global Supply Systems, including overseeing 55,000 employees around the world.

During that decade, he oversaw the reduction of production costs by 16 percent, offsetting inflationary and product improvement costs. Antoine currently serves as senior human resources administrator for P&G, with responsibility for all human resource systems for a company that employs over 100,000 people worldwide.

Antoine graduated from UW-Madison in 1969 with a bachelor's of science degree in chemical engineering. He added a master of business administration degree from the University of Chicago in 1972.

Antoine has long had an interest in child-care issues, and has served on the boards of several child-care community organizations. Antoine has also long maintained an interest in the arts, and currently serves on the board of the Cincinnati Ballet Company.

His wife of 32 years, Dorothy O'Brien, is also a graduate of UW. They have one daughter, who is now an undergraduate at NYU. Their hobbies are traveling (more than 40 U.S. states and a similar number of countries) and golf.


John Paul Cowan

John Paul Cowan (large image)

John Paul Cowan
Senior Vice President
Nuclear Management Company

When the Nuclear Regulatory Commission delivered a poor review to the Florida Power Corporation's Crystal River nuclear power plant, the company hired John Paul Cowan as one of two people to engineer a turnaround. Crystal River voluntarily shut down in 1996; Cowan and colleague Roy Anderson came on board in 1997 and began a 17-month, $310 million project to upgrade the 20-year-old plant. They instituted a new management style, opened the lines of communication throughout the plant and during the course of the project, inspected all of its 105 systems.

Crystal River reopened in early 1998 and Cowan remained chief nuclear officer at Florida Power until 2001, when the company merged with Carolina Power & Light. He now is senior vice president of operations at Nuclear Management Company, which operates eight nuclear plants in Iowa, Minnesota, Wisconsin and Michigan.

Cowan earned his bachelor's degree in nuclear engineering from UW-Madison in 1975, a master's degree from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in 1982 and a law degree from Georgia State University in 1992.

During his 25-year career in the nuclear power industry, he has held a variety of positions, from lead engineer and eventually plant manager at General Electric Company to manager of events analysis at the Institute of Nuclear Power Operations and vice president of operations and environmental support at Carolina Power & Light.

Cowan has been involved with the United Way and volunteered for the Friends of Homassa Springs Wildlife Park during his time at Florida Power.

He and his wife, Shirlee, have an 10-year-old daughter, Santanna. The three love to travel and recently have visited Paris, London, Boston, Atlanta and California. Cowan, who is a pilot and flight instructor, also works on the bodies of his nine cars, reads and landscapes in his spare time.


Burzoe K. Ghandhi

Burzoe K. Ghandhi (large image)

Burzoe K. Ghandhi
Corporate Director of Material Management (Retired)
Outboard Marine Corporation

Burzoe "Bud" Ghandhi came to the United States for his training as a mechanical engineer, and it was engines that have defined his long and successful career.

Ghandhi, born in Jabalpur, India, received his bachelor's (1953) and master's (1954) degrees in mechanical engineering from the University of Illinois. He earned his doctoral degree in mechanical engineering from UW-Madison in 1958 and an MBA from UW-Milwaukee in 1973.

Upon obtaining his doctoral degree, Ghandhi joined the research center of Outboard Marine Corp. in Milwaukee, where he was promoted from research engineer to research section manager to assistant director of research. While there he produced three patents and wrote several journal articles. He also led the research and development efforts behind the company's rotary engine, and introduced new, money-saving aluminum metal alloys into the manufacturing process. He has led efforts into the development of a new lubricant now almost universally used in two-stroke engines.

Ghandhi moved to Outboard Marine's corporate office in Waukegan, Illinois, in 1979, where he was corporate director of purchasing, corporate director of material management, and corporate director of material management and manufacturing engineering. He retired from the company in 1990.

Since 1991, Ghandhi has served as an adjunct professor for the Milwaukee School of Engineering, and has been honored with the school's Robert Moore Teaching Award.

He is a registered professional engineer and has served in a number of professional organizations, including the American Society of Quality Control, the board of directors of the Accreditation Board of Engineering and Technology, and the American Society of Mechanical Engineers.

Ghandhi and his wife, Nancy (also a UW-Madison graduate), have three children: Jamshed, Deena and Jaal. Their oldest son, Jamshed, earned his BS and PhD in mechanical engineering from UW-Madison, and an MS from MIT. Jamshed and his wife, Jayne Hastedt, have two children.

Deena earned a BS from UW-Madison and an MS from Cornell. She and her husband, Edward, have one daughter.

Jaal Ghandhi is an UW-Madison associate professor of mechanical engineering. He has a BS and MS from UW-Madison and earned his PhD from Princeton University. He and his wife, Kristen Churchill, have two children.


Donald C. Hintz

Donald C. Hintz (large image)

Donald C. Hintz
Entergy Corporation

During his 13-year career with Entergy Corporation, Donald Hintz could say he's gained a good deal of power. As company president, he is responsible for Entergy's 73 gas-fired power plants, 10 nuclear power plants, six coal-fired plants, 18,000 miles of transmission lines, and developing and constructing power plants worldwide.

His career began with 1966 bachelor's degrees in both chemical engineering and naval science at UW-Madison. After five years in the U.S. Navy, Hintz joined the Wisconsin Public Service Corporation, and served at its Kewaunee plant, eventually rising to senior vice president of power production — a position in which he was responsible for all of the company's power generation.

In 1989, Hintz became executive vice president and chief operating officer of Entergy's nuclear company; three years later, he took charge of Entergy Corporation's nuclear program as president and chief executive officer. In addition to his current role, Hintz has held positions on the boards of directors of Entergy subsidiaries and is a director on the Entergy Charitable Foundation Board.

He has been active in Habitat for Humanity and also has participated in Juvenile Diabetes Foundation and Walk to Cure Diabetes events.

A native of Wausau, Wisconsin, Hintz received the American Nuclear Society's 1995 Utility Leadership Award and serves on the boards of directors of ANS, the Nuclear Energy Institute, Institute of Nuclear Power Operations, Southeastern Electric Exchange, and Nuclear Electric Insurance Limited. His educational experiences also include the University of Michigan's Utility Executive Program and the Advanced Management Program at the Harvard Business School. With his wife, Arlene Hack, Hintz enjoys flying, boating, bicycling and travel.


Don C. Holloway Jr.

Don C. Holloway Jr. (large image)

Don C. Holloway
Director/Sales & Marketing (Retired)
Stanford Health Services

Although Don C. Holloway Jr. has been an academic, an entrepreneur, an inventor, an author, a manager, a consultant and a philanthropist, the common thread in his career has been his drive to improve the quality of health-care services.

He spent 10 years at the University of California-Berkeley's School of Public Health and five at Boston University's Health Policy Institute. At Stanford University Hospital, Holloway was director of sales and marketing. For nine years, he consulted with the government of Portugal, introducing industrial engineering methods to management staff at hospitals in that country. He co-invented and patented a system for medical claims review, which later became the basis for one of two companies he founded, and co-authored a popular textbook about how managers of health-care organizations can use industrial engineering methods.

He was chair of the board of the California Women's Recovery Association and currently chairs the advisory board of the Center for Adolescent Substance Abuse Research at Children's Hospital in Boston. This past July, Holloway rejoined Emeritus Professor David Gustafson, his major professor from 1968 to 1970, in a project to improve access to and retention in substance abuse treatment programs.

Academics — and UW-Madison engineering — run in Holloway's family. Holloway earned a bachelor's degree in mechanical engineering in 1966, and master's and PhD degrees in industrial engineering in 1968 and 1971. His grandfather graduated from UW-Madison with a degree in mechanical engineering in 1904; his father, in 1943. His wife, Janine, is a master's student at Gordon Conwell Theological Seminary, their son, Ted, is a senior at the University of Colorado-Boulder; daughter Keri is a junior at Hartwick College in New York, while daughter Alyssa is in fifth grade.


Mark D. McNabb

Mark D. McNabb (large image)

Mark D. McNabb
VP of Business Units (Retired)
Teledyne Wah Chang

In a way, Mark McNabb's career as a metallurgical engineer took him to the moon.

McNabb, who received a bachelor's of science degree in metallurgical engineering in 1958 from UW-Madison, worked briefly at Wright-Paterson Air Force Base in Dayton, Ohio before joining Wah Chang in Albany, Oregon in 1961.

There he worked as a metallurgical engineer, and among his projects was the development of niobium alloys that were used in the Apollo space program lunar modules. He also worked on zirconium-based alloys for use in nuclear reactors, and niobium-based superconductors.

He eventually entered management at Wah Chang (eventually known as Teledyne Wah Chang), and served as a department manager, director of the manufacturing division, vice president of sales and marketing, vice president of operations, and vice president of business units. During the last two decades of his work at the company, he had more than 800 employees reporting to him. He regularly travelled to Europe, Japan and China, often to negotiate long-term contracts with Wah Chang customers.

Following his retirement in 1995, McNabb continued to work as a consulting engineer in recycling.

McNabb is a longtime Rotarian, and has served as chairman of the Benton County (Oregon) Planning Commission, on which he served four terms. He also founded the North Albany Citizens Advisory Committee, and was active in the Episcopal Church Building Fund Committee. He continues to be active in local civic groups, including the Albany Chamber of Commerce, the Albany School Foundation, and the Albany Visitors Association.

He and his wife, Arlene, have two sons. Todd is a doctor of veterinary medicine. Craig is a doctor of physical medicine and is a rehabilitation specialist. The McNabbs enjoy both spending time with their four grandchildren and traveling the world to experience how other people live.


Jerome J. Mullins

Jerome J. Mullins (large image)

Jerome J. Mullins
Jerome J. Mullins & Associates

Jerry Mullins' education in civil engineering didn't just lead to a career in constructing buildings, it also led him to become one of Madison's most prominent figures in building design, construction supervision and ownership.

After a career in the United States Navy Air Corps during World War II, Mullins graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Madison with a BS degree in civil engineering in 1950. Mullins then joined General Engineering Company in Portage, Wisconsin, and worked on municipal engineering projects such as schools, sewers and streets. Only six years out of engineering school, he joined Weiler & Strang Architects/Engineers where he was in charge of the firm's structural engineering and construction coordination activities for eight years.

In I964, he formed his own consulting engineering firm, now known as Jerome J. Mullins and Associates, and has been making local history ever since. He has been sought out as an engineer and developer for his structural creativity, ingenuity and cost-effective engineering services. Many of the Madison area's most prominent developers and every level of government, from the federal government to towns and villages, have hired his firm to design or supervise construction of their projects. Jerry's biggest client, however, is Madison's largest private real estate owner: himself. He owns both commercial and residential property in the Madison area, including the Inn on the Park hotel and a new downtown office building at 22 E. Mifflin St.

A registered professional engineer in Wisconsin, Mullins has been a director of Downtown Madison, Inc. since 1976. He is also a member of the National Board of Realtors, the National Construction Specifications Institute, and the Wisconsin Society of Professional Engineers. He has served on many community boards and has received numerous awards and honors for his engineering work and community service.

Mullins and his wife, Carol, have been married for 53 years. They have five grown children: Maureen, a physician; Brian, an engineer and attorney; Mallory, an attorney; Brad, a business executive; and Jay, a professional engineer.


Keith D. Nosbusch

Keith D. Nosbusch (large image)

Keith D. Nosbusch
Rockwell Automation Control Systems

At UW-Madison, Keith D. Nosbusch was a leader on the football field and in the classroom, making the academic all Big Ten lineup in 1971 and serving as team captain in 1972. When he left the university in 1974 with a bachelor's degree in electrical and computer engineering, Nosbusch took his leadership qualities to Milwaukee electronics company Allen-Bradley (now a division of Rockwell International Corporation).

Beginning as an applications engineer, Nosbusch worked his way up the corporate ladder, and in 1988, became vice president of the presence sensing business. During his tenure in that position, the unit grew more than 10 percent per year. Later, as vice president of the control logic business, Nosbusch focused on global growth and positioning it to compete more effectively in open architectures. In 1996, he was named senior vice president of the control and information group, a position in which he launched ControlLogix, Rockwell's premier integrated control and information platform. He also helped form the company's process business and services business. Four years ago, Nosbusch took over as president of control systems, the largest business in Rockwell International's portfolio. Additionally, he is a corporate officer and senior vice president of Rockwell Automation. With his help, Rockwell's Milwaukee location attained ISO 14001 certification — one of the state's largest companies to earn this environmental compliance certification.

A Milwaukee native, Nosbusch earned a master's of business administration from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee in 1976. He is a board member of several organizations, including the Boys & Girls Club of Milwaukee, the Metropolitan Milwaukee Association of Commerce, the National Electrical Manufacturers Association, and the Manufacturers Alliance/MAPI.

Nosbusch and his wife, Jane, have three children: Carolyn, 18; David, 16; and Laurie, 12. Nosbusch enjoys travel, golf, reading and youth sports.


Robert E. Pitt

Robert E. Pitt (large image)

Robert E. Pitt
Professor, Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering
University of Alabama

When there's a storm, Robert Pitt is less interested in what's falling from the sky than he is in what happens to that precipitation once it hits the ground.

An expert in storm-water management, Pitt has worked on lake-management and environmental research projects, hazardous material management plans, facility location studies and environmental assessments for 30 years. The beneficiaries of his findings include the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Environment Canada, Ontario Ministry of the Environment, and local and state governments.

Pitt, who earned a 1987 PhD from UW-Madison in civil and environmental engineering, received his bachelor's degree in engineering science from Humboldt State University, Arcata, California, in 1970; and master's degree in environmental and hydraulic engineering from San Jose State University in 1971.

He began his engineering career with URS Research Company and Woodward Clyde Consultants in the San Francisco Bay Area. As a senior engineer, he directed air- and water-quality groups involved in regional environmental management plans and contingency planning for hazardous material spills. In 1979, he and his family moved to Wisconsin, where they lived on and operated a sheep farm and Pitt continued work as an environmental engineer and consultant. After he earned his PhD, Pitt began a teaching career at the University of Alabama-Birmingham. Now a professor of civil and environmental engineering at the University of Alabama-Tuscaloosa, Pitt has taught more than 100 workshops (many with Engineering Professional Development) and seminars worldwide and is author of six books and numerous training manuals and research reports.

A member of the Water Environment Research Foundation's Stormwater Advisory Board, Pitt is a diplomate of the American Academy of Environmental Engineers. He and his wife, Kathryn, have been married 35 years and have two children, Brady and Gwen. Pitt has been a Boy Scout leader and he and Kathryn enjoy working around their Birmingham, Alabama, home, and traveling throughout the country.


Robert J. Pofahl

Robert J. Pofahl (large image)

Robert J. Pofahl
Resource Engineering Associates, Inc.

These days, citizens watch soil and ground-water quality more closely as farmland is developed into parking lots and farmers attempt to alleviate agricultural runoff. But for the past 29 years, Robert J. Pofahl has improved the environment via soil and water engineering, waste-water reclamation, land-use planning and remediating sites contaminated by agrichemical and petroleum.

He received bachelor's and master's degrees in agricultural engineering in 1971 and 1973 and began his career reviewing water resources for the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources. After four years, he moved to Fresno, California, where he joined Harza Engineering and later Boyle Engineering Corporation. There, he solved environmental problems associated with irrigation and water quality on large farms in the area.

Returning to Wisconsin in 1985, Pofahl focused on soil and ground-water remediation as a senior engineer with national environmental consulting firm RMT, headquartered in Madison. Two years later, he formed Resource Engineering Associates in Middleton. The company focuses on environmental considerations of development, including site selection, water resources and waste management. Its primary service areas are agricultural and land redevelopment.

A member of the American Society of Agricultural Engineers, Pofahl is involved in the community as well. He is a member of the Middleton Chamber of Commerce's Economic Development Committee, is a regular voice at city council meetings, and is a volunteer in school and recreational activities.

Pofahl and his wife, Julie, have hosted exchange students from Austria and Brazil, and have three children. Nathan is a UW-Madison graduate; Jennifer is a senior here and Katie is a freshman. Pofahl and Julie enjoy taking walks or bicycle rides, traveling throughout the country, gardening, and repairing a campus-area house where their children live while attending UW-Madison.


Richard H. Weaver

Richard H. Weaver (large image)

Richard H. Weaver
Consultant (Retired)

Richard Weaver parlayed his training as a chemical engineer into a long and distinguished career with one of the world's leading oil companies: ExxonMobil Corp.

Weaver, a New Orleans native who earned his bachelor's and master's degrees in chemical engineering from Tulane University, received his doctoral degree in chemical engineering from UW-Madison in 1964. From there he joined Exxon Production Research in Houston, Texas as a senior research engineer and became a research supervisor in 1970.

His career took him overseas, where we worked for Arabian American Oil Co. in Saudi Arabia from 1972-1975, serving as a technical consultant and operations superintendent. He then moved to London with Esso Exploration and Production, UK, where he served as operations manger responsible for Esso's interests in treatment, storage and shipping facilities for North Sea oil production.

Weaver returned to the United States in 1979 and served in a variety of positions for Exxon, including operations manager for Alaskan and later Californian production operations. After a brief assignment as production vice president for Exxon Colombian operations in Bogota, he was named Exxon's general manager for business development in the former Soviet Union and Eastern Europe in 1991. He later served as vice president for Exxon Ventures CIS, in which he was the principle negotiator with the Russian government for oil and gas production rights. He retired from Exxon in 1996 and subsequently has worked as a consultant.

Weaver has served on a number of professional committees and organizations, including the Exploration and Production Forum (Europe), Alaska Oil and Gas Association and the Society of Petroleum Engineers. He has also written articles for the journal of Petroleum Technology. He has also been involved in civic and public affairs organizations, including the United Way, arts groups in Alaska, and the American Red Cross.

Weaver lives with his wife Barbara in Warren, New Jersey. They have three children and four grandchildren. They enjoy traveling (often with Wisconsin Alumni Association) and visiting with family in Alaska, California and Illinois. Weaver is an elder in his church, currently overseeing a facility wide refurbishment, and enjoys playing golf.


Kenneth R. Wright

Kenneth R. Wright (large image)

Kenneth R. Wright
CFO and Chief Engineer
Wright Water Engineers, Inc.

Kenneth Wright's professional interests have taken him from the depths of reservoirs to the heights of Peru's Machu Picchu.

Wright serves as chief engineer and chief financial officer of Wright Water Engineers, Inc., of Denver, a company he founded in 1961.

His company does the engineering work in the design of water-related systems: water delivery, wastewater collection and treatment, drainage and flood control, pipelines, dams and reservoirs, and wetlands restoration.

It does it so well, and with such a strong sense of ethical business service, that Wright Water Engineers received one of the nation's most distinguished business ethics honors in 1999. The company received the Society of Financial Service Professionals Ethics Award, one of only three such awards bestowed annually by the organization. The award came three years after the company was honored with the Colorado Business in Ethics Award.

Last year, the American Society of Civil Engineers honored Wright Water Engineers with its Civil Engineering History and Heritage Award.

Wright has long taken an interest in the history of civil engineering, and both he and his company have acquired an international reputation for their research into ancient Native American and South American water resources. Last year, Wright wrote a book published by the American Society of Civil Engineers titled, "Machu Picchu: A Civil Engineering Marvel." He has published more than 100 articles for civil engineering publications and manuals during his career.

Wright graduated from UW-Madison with both a BS degree in civil and environmental engineering and a BA in marketing in 1951. He went on to receive a master's degree in civil engineering in 1957 from UW-Madison.