The National Academy of Engineering welcomed 76 new Members and 11 new Foreign Associates at its annual induction ceremony in Washington, DC on October 3.
NAE’s mission is “to promote the technological welfare of the nation by marshaling the knowledge and insights of eminent members of the engineering profession.” Election to membership is one of the highest professional honors accorded an engineer. NAE consists of 12 Sections (corresponding to the various branches of engineering). This year, Section 5 (Computer Science & Engineering) inducted 15 Members and Foreign Associates—17 percent of the total.
CRN announced the new members of NAE Section 5 in the March issue. (The induction ceremony lags the announcement by 7 months.) What was striking at the induction ceremony—and what motivates this follow-up—was the particularly enthusiastic welcome given by the large and diverse audience to many of Section 5’s new members. All members of NAE have significant engineering accomplishments to their credit, but people can directly relate to what we do—to Google (it seemed as if the applause would never stop for new member Larry Page, whose PageRank algorithm is the technical foundation of the company), to Java (James Gosling), to C++ (Bjarne Stroustrup), to the laser printer (Gary Starkweather), to Lotus Notes (Ray Ozzie), to Roomba (Rodney Brooks), and so on.
We’re incredibly lucky to work in a field whose accomplishments are so broadly appreciated.
Ed Lazowska holds the Bill and Melinda Gates Chair of Computer Science and Engineering at the University of Washington. He currently co-chairs the President’s Information Technology Advisory Committee (PITAC), and is a former long-term member and chair of CRA’s board of directors.