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Swanson School of Engineering announces 2017 Distinguished Alumni at annual banquet

PITTSBURGH (March 22, 2017) … Collectively they are professors, researchers and authors; inventors, builders and producers; business leaders, entrepreneurs and industry pioneers. The 53rd annual Distinguished Alumni Banquet brought together honorees from each of the Swanson School of Engineering’s six departments and one overall honoree to represent the entire school. The banquet took place at the University of Pittsburgh's Alumni Hall, and Gerald D. Holder, US Steel Dean of Engineering, presented the awards.

Dr. Wanda M. Austin, a graduate from the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering and retired president and CEO of The Aerospace Corporation, received recognition as Distinguished Alumna and represented the Swanson School.

“The Swanson School Distinguished Alumni Award recognizes past recipients of the departmental awards who have excelled in their careers, who have been an inspiration to faculty and students at the Swanson School and who through their accomplishments and capacity have had an impact on the next generation of Pitt engineers,” said Dean Holder. “Wanda, for your incredible engineering career, and your dedication, not only to your employees but future engineers and scientists, we are proud to honor you as our 2017 Distinguished Alumna of the Swanson School of Engineering.”

This year’s recipients include:

Swanson School of Engineering
Wanda M. Austin, PhD, MSCE '77, MS Math ‘77 
Retired, President & CEO, The Aerospace Corporation

Department of Bioengineering
Mark DiSilvestro, MSBEG ’99, PhD BIOE ‘00 
COO, Cases By Source; President, Vista Management Consulting LLC

Department of Chemical and Petroleum Engineering
Donna G. Blackmond, PhD, BSCHE ’80, MSCHE ‘81 
Professor of Chemistry, Scripps Research Institute

Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering
Michael Flowers, MSCE ‘78
Retired, President & CEO, American Bridge Company

Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering
Vibha Rustagi, BSEE ‘87
CEO, itaas, a Cognizant Company

Department of Industrial Engineering
John Richter, BSIE ‘75
Retired, Vice President of Operations, PPG Coatings  Asia

Department of Mechanical Engineering and Materials Science 
Jay Nunamaker, Jr., PhD, BSME ’60, MSIE ‘66
Regents and Soldwedel Professor of MIS, Computer Science and Communications, University of Arizona

This year’s sponsors included:

Gold Level: i+icon USA
Blue Level: PPG Coatings Asia, Pittsburgh Biomechanics
Friends: Caliber Contracting Services, SAI Consulting Engineers, Ellwood Quality Steels, The Aerospace Corporation


Pictured above from left: Mark DiSilvestro, Donna Blackmond, Michael Flowers, Wanda Austin, Vibha Rustagi, John Richter and Jay Nunamaker

Author: Author: Matt Cichowicz, Communications Writer

Contact: Paul Kovach