seal  Purdue News

September 25, 2003

Purdue names 2003 outstanding electrical engineering alumni

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. – Eight Purdue University graduates will be named this year's Outstanding Electrical and Computer Engineers during an award ceremony today (Thursday, 9/25).

"We are delighted to introduce the 2003 class of Outstanding Electrical and Computer Engineers," said Linda P.B. Katehi, the John A. Edwardson Dean of Engineering. "From a shared beginning at Purdue, to their exceptional contributions across the discipline and across the globe, these explorers took the road less traveled and made the journey their own.

"We are proud to consider them ambassadors of the great tradition of Purdue engineering."

Of Purdue's roughly 20,000 living electrical and computer engineering graduates, 141 have received the awards since they began in 1992.

"Each year a handful of our alumni emerge from a vast field of over 20,000 professionals to gain our notice," said Mark J. T. Smith, the Michael J. and Katherine R. Birck Professor and Head of the School of Electrical and Computer Engineering. "For their pioneering professional achievements, service to humanity, and for reaching beyond boundaries, these individuals deserve our recognition and praise."

This year's award recipients are:

• William B. Elmore, of Palo Alto, Calif., who received bachelor's and master's degrees from Purdue, in 1975 and 1976, respectively, and an MBA from Stanford University. He is a veteran venture capitalist in Silicon Valley and has helped nurture hundreds of young companies.

• Jeffrey D. Fisher, of San Jose, Calif., who received a bachelor's degree in 1980 from Purdue and an MBA in 1984 from Santa Clara University. He is executive vice president of worldwide sales for NVIDIA Corp., a Silicon Valley graphics chip company. The company recently was recognized by Fortune magazine as one of the 100 fastest-growing companies in the United States.

• Gen Fukunaga, of Roanoke, Texas, who received bachelor's and master's degrees from Purdue in 1982 and 1984, respectively, and an MBA from Columbia University in 1989. He is founder and president of FUNimation Productions Ltd., in Ft. Worth, Texas. FUNimation is a global company involved in producing entertainment animations and is well known in the field for "Dragon Ball Z," which TV Guide has called one of the Cartoon Network's most popular programs.

• Roch-Chian Ho, of Houston, who received a doctoral degree from Purdue in 1975, a master's in electrical engineering from Washington University in 1971 and a bachelor's degree in electrical engineering from National Chiao Tung University in 1969. He is the founder and presently CEO of two companies, Intertek Corp. and Amperor Inc., both of-Taipai, Taiwan. His companies specialize in the design and production of power supplies for desktop personal computers and satellite communication sets and the manufacture of portable and stand-alone AC/DC and DC/AC converters.

• Hong-Sun Kim, of Fullerton, Calif.,  who received a doctoral degree from Purdue in 1990, and bachelor's and master's degrees from Seoul National University in 1983 and 1985, respectively. He is founder, CEO and president of SecureSoft Inc., headquartered in Seoul. It is a leading global Internet security company.

• Joseph Schoendorf, of Palo Alto, Calif., who received a bachelor's degree from Purdue in 1966. He is a venture capitalist who has been involved in the software and telecommunications industries for 30 years. For the past 15 years he as been an executive partner of Accel Partners in Palo Alto. 

• Edmund O. Schweitzer III, of Pullman, Wash., who received bachelor's and master's degrees from Purdue in 1968 and 1971, respectively, and a doctoral degree in 1977 from Washington State University. He is founder and president of Schweitzer Engineering Labs, headquartered in Pullman. He started the company in his basement with $2,000, and it now designs, manufactures and distributes equipment that makes electricity safer, more reliable and economical to power utilities and large industries.

• Edward G. Tiedemann Jr., of Concord, Mass., and San Diego, Calif., who received a master's degree from Purdue in 1977, a bachelor's degree in electrical engineering in 1975 from the Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University and a doctoral degree in electrical engineering in 1987 from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He holds more than 90 U.S. patents and many foreign patents and is a senior vice president for cellular-communications giant QUALCOMM Inc., headquartered in San Diego.

Writer: Emil Venere, (765) 494-4709,

Sources: Linda P.B. Katehi, (765) 494-5346;

Mark J.T. Smith, (765) 494-3539,

Purdue News Service: (765) 494-2096;

NOTE TO JOURNALISTS: Photographs and detailed biographical information about the recipients will be available at Purdue Outstanding Electrical and Computer Engineering Awards page.

* To the Purdue News and Photos Page