Robert Cervenka co-founded Phillips Plastics in 1964 and served as its chief executive officer and chairman, while his wife, Debbie, worked as executive vice president and member of the board of directors until the couple sold the company in 2010. After the sale, the Cervenkas toured the Department of Mechanical Engineering, seeking a way to give back. They settled on updating manufacturing, measuring and other lab equipment, which Debbie says goes to the heart of what mechanical engineering is, and what the department actually needed.
“We both feel very connected to what it takes to run a successful company, technologically,” she says. “Madison is one of the foremost schools of engineering in the country, and they’re doing unbelievably good work on basically a shoestring.” Read more »
Robert Cervenka (BSME '58) and Debra Cervenka
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