IET names winners of 2008 Achievement Awards

23 October 2008

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The winners of the Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET) Achievement Awards 2008 have been announced. Each winner will receive an award for outstanding contribution to the engineering industry.

Robin McGill, IET chief executive, says: "I would like to congratulate the winners of the IET's Achievement Awards 2008. Each nominee has contributed hugely to their field of work. Through their hard work, they have gained national and international respect from their peers.

"These awards have true global recognition and acknowledge excellence in engineering careers, particularly senior professionals at the pinnacle of their career. The awards also provide an opportunity to celebrate outstanding individuals in the world of engineering."

Carol Burke, from Coventry, receives the Nuffield Award for Achievement in Manufacturing. In 1997, Burke was appointed Managing Director for Unipart Manufacturing Group (a subsidiary of Unipart Group). Her role was to improve the growth of the company, its people and to support the Unipart Group. During her time in this role, the turnover grew from £30million to £70million with fast-growing profits. Her other awards include 2005 West Midlands Businesswoman of the Year.

Professor Michael Grimble, from Glasgow, receives the Heaviside Medal for Achievement in Control. Professor Grimble has been a very influential researcher in the control field for many years. He has published over 200 journal papers, several books and over 300 conference papers. He established Industrial Systems and Control Ltd, a university consultancy company. The business, where he acts as the technical director, has been running for two decades. He also set up Advanced Control Technology Consortium, a technology transfer organisation. It currently comprises over 30 industrial members in the UK and abroad. The organisation includes international companies such as Boeing and National Instruments. He has also co-founded three international journals in the field of engineering and serves as editor-in-chief of three journals and two book series.

Professor Lajos Hanzo, from Southampton, receives the Sir Monty Finniston Award for Achievement in any field of Engineering and Technology. He has made an outstanding contribution to the wireless multimedia industry over a period of 30 years. He has led many research projects across different critical areas including modulation, coding, video and audio compression. His work is widely implemented in many of today's communication systems. In addition to his respected contribution, Professor Hanzo has acted as a supervisor, tutor and mentor to many of today's wireless engineers.

Professor William I Milne, from Cambridge, receives the JJ Thomson Medal for Achievement in Electronics. He is well-respected in the Far East and has managed large research contracts on behalf of numerous industries and companies. Professor Milne has made the Electrical Division at Cambridge University one of the strongest departments in the UK with a firm growth in student numbers and teaching quality. He has also raised funds to erect a new building for the Electrical Division that also houses the Centre for Advanced Photonics and Electronics (CAPE) and he was responsible for much of its design and content.

In 2006, Professor Milne was elected to the Fellowship of the Royal Academy of Engineering, which demonstrates recognition for leading engineers. He is also a Fellow of Churchill College and regularly contributes to the training of the new generation of engineers in the UK.

Mr David Ogden, from Warton in Lancashire, receives the Oliver Lodge Medal for Achievement Information Technology. Ogden has worked for BAE Systems since 1987, demonstrating commitment to engineering excellence on one of the most challenging engineering programmes ever attempted. For three years, Mr Odgen was heavily involved in developing industrial systems including the Experimental Aircraft Programme. His duties included working on the software and hardware integration of the main cockpit mission computer, which is responsible for displaying data to the pilot. After the programme, he was appointed the Military Air Solution's embedded systems technologist. He has worked across Europe, spending a considerable amount of time on supplier sites, providing guidance, diagnostics, consultancy as well as hardware and software integration activities.

Mr John Scott, from Bicester, receives the Crompton Medal for Achievement in Power. In his early career, Scott introduced significant technical ideas and concepts for the development and operation of the UK transmission grid. As a manager, he provided vision and direction that have contributed significantly to the transformation of power networks research and innovation in Britain. He has held several senior management positions in the power sector. They include Director of Engineering at the National Grid and Technical Director of Ofgem, the energy regulator. Scott made a significant impact during his time at Ofgem with the introduction of the Innovation Funding Incentive (IFI) and Registered Power Zones (RPZ) schemes that have revolutionised innovation activities in the privatised electricity sector in the UK. At an international level, Scott is highly respected by specialists and managers in the electricity industry. He was a co-founder and Vice Chairman of the Executive Team that developed the SmartGrid European Technology Platform, which has established the vision for future electricity networks across Europe.

Brijendra Syngal, from Gurgaon in India, receives the Ambrose Fleming Medal for Achievement in Communications. Mr Syngal is well known and respected in the international telecommunications industry. He has been Chairman of India's Overseas Communications Company (one of the five biggest listed companies during 1991-1998), Commonwealth Telecommunications Organisation (CTO) in London, a governor of the Intelsat board in Washington DC and a councillor of the Inmarsat Council in London.

He was also credited with bringing the internet to India in 1995. He was named one of the fifty stars of Asia by the Business Week magazine for his contributions and as an ambassador of change. He was also honoured by his Alma Mater (Indian Institute of Technology Kharagpur) with a life fellowship for his contributions in the field of communications and changing the life of millions by bringing internet and digital connectivity to India.

The winners will collect their medals on 3 November 2008 at a ceremony at the Park Plaza Riverbank, London.

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