Binghamton University medal to recognize engineering leader


John Brooks Slaughter, the president of a group responsible for encouraging minorities to participate in engineering, will receive the University Medal, the highest honor the University can bestow.

Slaughter, president and CEO of the National Action Council for Minorities in Engineering (NACME), will receive the medal from President Lois B. DeFleur at 4 p.m. Wednesday, March 5, in Watters Theater.

Slaughter is visiting the campus to give a presentation titled “Wouldn’t You Like to be One of Tomorrow’s Leaders in Engineering, Science, Mathematics? A Road Map to Success.” The presentation is free and open to the public.

Slaughter is being honored for his accomplishments as an educator, national policy leader and engineer, and for his commitment to diversity. He will also be recognized for his role in the collaboration between the Thomas J. Watson School of Engineering and Applied Science and the National Science Foundation funded Alliance for Graduate Education Professorate program (AGEP) in the Graduate School.

Slaughter has a long and distinguished background as a leader in the education, engineering and scientific communities. He is a member of the National Academy of Engineering and an inductee into the American Society for Engineering Education Hall of Fame. He serves on the board of directors of IBM, Northrop Grumman and Solutia, Inc.

Slaughter earned his PhD in engineering science from the University of California, San Diego, after receiving his master’s from UCLA, and his BS in electrical engineering from Kansas State University. He began his professional career as an engineer for General Dynamics Corp. and later joined the Naval Electronics Laboratory Center.

In 1975, he was named director of the applied physics lab at the University of Washington, before serving as assistant director for the NSF from 1977 to 1979. He returned to the University of Washington as academic vice president and provost before being appointed as director of the NSF by President Reagan in 1980.

After two years he was named chancellor at the University of Maryland-College Park before being named president of Occidental College, Los Angeles. He held that position from 1988 through 1999 and now serves as president emeritus. He took over leadership of the NACME in June 2000 and also serves as the Melbo Professor of Leadership in Education at UCLA.

He holds honorary degrees from more than 20 institutions and numerous awards, including the first U.S. Black Engineer of the Year award (1987), the Martin Luther King Jr. National Award (1997) and the Executive Leadership Council Heritage Award (2001).

For more information about Slaughter’s visit to Binghamton University, contact Cynthia Sedgwick, associate dean for the Watson School, at 607-777-6204.

Last Updated: 9/17/13