Dr. Bill Cardoso (M.S./Ph.D. ’11)
CEO, Creative Electron
Cardoso received his associate's degree at the age of 13, and went on to earn a bachelor of science in electrical engineering. He received both his Master of Science and Ph.D. degrees in Electrical and Computer Engineering from Illinois Tech. In 2011 he was awarded the university's prestigious Outstanding Young Alumnus Award. He earned his M.B.A. from the University of Chicago, and sits on the technical committees of Surface Mount Technology Association International, SMTA Counterfeit Conference, SMTA LED Conference, Components for Military and Space Electronics Conference, Society for Optics and Photonics, and the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers Nuclear Science Symposium. Cardoso has written two books and over 150 technical publications.
Piyush Desai (M.S. EE ’04/Ph.D. ’09)PD Consulting Inc., Chicago
Software Motor Company, Sunnyvale, Calif.
Desai is a passionate engineer in pursuit of impactful innovations that synergies with his technical and entrepreneurial expertise. Soon after graduating with his B.E. (1992) in India, Desai started a business providing technical solutions to industries and OEMs. That included the installation/commissioning and programming of variable speed drives in 1994, which turned into a lifelong passion for motors and drives. Desai received master's (2004) and doctoral (2009) degrees from Illinois Tech. He holds several granted and pending patents in the United States and internationally. As an adjunct faculty member at Illinois Tech, he taught Electric Motor Drives and Adjustable Speed Drives courses for undergraduates and graduates. He has worked for multiple companies—and has also founded his own consulting business—and is now the vice president of motor design/co-founder of Software Motor Company. His research and experience focus on electric motors, drives, controls, and PV solar.
Kevin DonohueDatabeam Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering
University of Kentucky
Donohue received a Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering from Illinois Tech in 1987. He is currently the Databeam Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering at the University of Kentucky. His work has contributed to the general area of signal processing systems, with applications in medical imaging, biomedical signal analysis, non-destructive evaluation, radar detection, and audio sensor networks with over $4 million of funding in these areas and more than 100 technical publications. He has served the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at Kentucky in an administrative capacity, including four years as interim department chair and eight and a half years as director of undergraduate studies. He co-founded Signal Solutions, LLC, based on technology he developed to non-invasively and automatically track sleep-and-wake behaviors in rodents, primarily for high-throughput behavioral studies. This equipment is currently used in animal research laboratories throughout the United States.
David Hentrich (Ph.D. CPE ’18)
Tech Fellow, Northrop Grumman
Hentrich works across the spectrum of aerospace digital hardware and software. Previously, he worked in the automotive unit of Motorola (later, acquired by Continental AG of Hanover, Germany) to design and field several generations of OnStar embedded telematics systems to General Motors. He received a B.S. degree in computer science from the University of Dayton and M.S. degrees in electrical engineering and computer engineering from Illinois Tech. Further, he received a Ph.D. in computer engineering from Illinois Tech in 2018 where he concentrated on a novel polymorphic computing architecture. His research interests include reconfigurable computing, polymorphic computing, instruction set design, and memory design.
Jiang Hsieh (Ph.D. ECE ’89)Chief Scientist, GE Healthcare
Adjunct Professor, University of Wisconsin–Madison
Hsieh received his Ph.D. in Electrical and Computer Engineering from Illinois Tech in 1989. He was a principal research scientist in the applied research department of Siemens Gammasonics Inc. from 1984 to 1989, and later joined the applied science lab of GE Medical Systems. He is now a chief scientist of GE Healthcare and an adjunct professor in the Department of Medical Physics at the University of Wisconsin–Madison. He holds over 250 United States patents, and has authored or co-authored more than 200 articles, book chapters, and textbooks. He taught short courses at the annual meetings of Radiological Society of North American, annual meetings of American Association of Physics in Medicine (AAPM), Medical Imaging Conferences of Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineering (IEEE), and Medical Imaging Conferences of the International Society for Optics and Photonics (SPIE). He is a fellow of American Institute for Medical and Biological Engineering (AIMBE), AAPM, IEEE, and SPIE.
Mahesh Iyer, (M.S. EE ’91/Ph.D ’95)Intel Fellow, Intel Corporation
Iyer is an Intel fellow and the chief architect and technologist for electronic design automation (EDA) in the Programmable Solutions Group at Intel Corporation. He is responsible for defining and carrying out the technical vision and direction for the Quartus compiler organization and its products, a role that encompasses logic synthesis, placement, clock allocation, physical synthesis, clustering, routing, timing analysis, flow convergence, and design verification. Iyer collaborates with global teams of software engineers and architects across Intel that are focused on architecture, integrated circuit design, and design automation to advance design implementation tools and next-generation field-programmable gate array (FPGA) and other spatial architectures. A recognized EDA industry expert, Iyer joined Intel in 2015 following its acquisition of Altera Corp., where he had held similar responsibilities since 2013. Before joining Altera, Iyer accrued 17 years of experience at Synopsys Inc., a leader in the EDA industry. He served as the lead software architect for some of Synopsys’s most successful EDA products, including Design Compiler, IC Compiler, and VCS. During his Synopsys career, Iyer invented and developed numerous algorithms for logic synthesis, physical synthesis, design implementation flows, and test-bench automation. In 2010 he was named Synopsys’s Inventor of the Year. Iyer began his professional career in the early 1990s at AT&T Bell Laboratories, where he researched and invented seminal algorithms for hardware test automation. Iyer earned a bachelor’s degree in electronics from the University of Bombay in India, and graduated with master’s and Ph.D. degrees in electrical engineering from the Illinois Tech, which honored him with a Distinguished Alumni Professional Achievement Award in 2010. He has published more than 30 papers on various EDA topics and has more than 80 issued or pending patents in related fields. He is a senior member of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, and has served on technical program committees of various conferences. He was named a Synopsys fellow in 2006, an Altera fellow in 2013, and an Intel fellow in 2016.
Bruno LequesneLequesne received a certified engineer degree from Centrale-Supélec (France) in 1978 and a Ph.D. degree in electrical engineering from the Missouri University of Science and Technology in 1984. He worked for 30 years in the automotive industry on transportation electrification research and industrial drives before starting his own consultancy—E-Motors Consulting, LLC—in 2014. His automotive involvement includes working at General Motors Research Laboratories (1984–1999) and Delphi Research Laboratories (1999–2006). In September 2006 he moved to the Delphi Powertrain Division to manage a group within the Advanced Powertrain Engineering organization (2006–2009). After a year at the University of Alabama, he joined the Eaton Corporate Research & Technology group to focus on the electrification of commercial vehicles and advanced industrial drives (2010–2014). Since starting his consultancy, he has contributed to the automotive, aerospace, and renewable energy industries, where has worked on motors, actuators, and systems. He is also an expert witness with courtroom experience. Lequesne holds 52 patents, with one more pending, primarily on sensors, linear actuators, and automotive applications. He is the recipient of 11 Best Paper Awards, eight from the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers-Industry Applications Society (IAS)—including two Transactions Paper Awards and three from the Society of Automotive Engineers, including the Colwell (2000) and the Bendix (2007) awards. He was elected an IEEE fellow in 1997, and received the Nikola Tesla Award in 2016. He is also past president (2011–2012) of the IEEE Industry Applications Society, and currently serves on the board of the IEEE Transportation Electrification Community, where he chairs the Long Range Planning Committee.
McCoy Energy Consulting, LLC
McCoy is president of McCoy Energy Consulting, LLC, which specializes in grid operations, maintenance practices, and asset due diligence. McCoy is also a principal of Atlantic Wind Connection. He was president of Trans-Elect Development Company, LLC, from 1999 through late 2011. Prior to joining Trans-Elect, McCoy was senior vice [resident of Unicom, senior vice president of ComEd, and led ComEd’s Transmission Group. McCoy had direct responsibility for a wide variety of activities at ComEd, including the planning, design, construction, and operation functions for its transmission and distribution systems. He was chairman of the Mid-America Interconnected Network, one of the North American Electric Reliability Corporation's Reliability Councils; a board member of NERC; chairman of the National Electric Energy Testing, Research, and Applications Center at Georgia Institute of Technology; and a member of the Electric Power Research Institut Research Advisory Committee. McCoy is also a past-president of WIRES, a national organization that promotes the economic expansion of a strong and well-planned electric transmission network. He currently serves on New Brunswick Power’s Board of Directors.
Rohit Prasad (M.S. EE ’99)Head Scientist, Amazon Alexa
Prasad is the vice president and head scientist at Amazon Alexa, the voice service that powers Amazon’s family of Echo products, Amazon Fire TV, and third-party offerings. Prasad leads Alexa research and development in artificial intelligence technologies aimed at making interaction with Alexa a magical experience for customers. Prior to his work at Amazon, Prasad was a deputy manager and senior director of the Speech, Language, and Multimedia Business unit at Raytheon BBN Technologies. In that role, he directed United States government-sponsored research-and-development initiatives in speech-to-speech translation, psychological health analytics, document image translation, and STEM learning. Prasad is a named author on more than 100 scientific articles and holds several patents. He earned his master’s degree in electrical engineering at Illinois Tech and a bachelor’s degree in electronics and communications engineering from Birla Institute of Technology, Mesra (India).
Wanda RederMember of NAE, IEEE Fellow
Wanda Reder is the chief strategy officer at S&C Electric Company. Prior to S&C, she held leadership positions at two major investor-owned utilities. Her pioneering work has led to smart grid deployments and wind, solar energy, and utility-scale battery storage integration into traditional utility systems. Inducted into the National Academy of Engineering in 2016 and an Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers fellow, Reder was recognized with the 2014 IEEE Richard M. Emerson Award for her leadership in the IEEE Smart Grid program and in the continued growth of the Power and Energy Society (PES), including the creation of its scholarship fund program. Reder was the first woman president of PES, and is responsible for the launch of the IEEE Smart Grid, which positioned IEEE as the leading source for information on smart-grid technology. She has served as an IEEE board member and is currently on the IEEE Foundation Board. Reder is vice chair of the United States Department of Energy’s Electricity Advisory Committee.
Kenneth ZdunekSenior VP and CTO
Roberson and Associates, LLC
Zdunek is chief technology officer and senior vice president of Roberson and Associates, LLC, a technology and management consulting firm in Schaumburg, Illinois. He is a life fellow of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers and has over 40 years of experience in research, analysis, and development of wireless communications systems. Concurrently, he is an adjunct professor in electrical engineering at Illinois Tech, where he conducts research in the area of dynamic spectrum access, spectrum sharing, and efficient spectrum utilization. He has taught graduate courses in wireless communication system design. Prior to Roberson and Associates, which he helped found in 2009, he was Vice President of networks research at Motorola, Inc. Zdunek was twice awarded Motorola’s Patent of the Year for inventions used in cellular voice-data integration and cellular system roaming. He holds 17 other patents, including patents used in public safety wireless networks. Zdunek was awarded a Ph.D. in electrical engineering from Illinois Tech, and bachelor's and master's degrees in electrical engineering from Northwestern University. He is an advocate of K-12 STEM education, and is on the Board of Directors—and is a past -president—of the Chicago Public Schools Student Science Fair, Inc.