Member Recognitions: August 2009

These IEEE members recently were recognized for their work by other organizations

6 August 2009

The National Association of Broadcasters, Washington, D.C., named two IEEE members as recipients of its 2009 Television and Radio Engineering Achievement Awards. They were recognized for their many contributions to the broadcast industry.

Sterling Davis, who received the Television Engineering Achievement Award, has spent more than 40 years in broadcasting. He is vice president of engineering for Cox Broadcasting in Atlanta, where he oversees file-based news gathering and automated news production. He is a member of the IEEE Broadcast Technology and Communications societies.

Davis received a bachelor’s degree in physics and mathematics in 1963 from Taylor University, in Upland, Ind.

Jack Sellmeyer received the Radio Engineering Achievement Award for his more than 50 years of work in radio engineering and equipment design. He is principal engineer of Sellmeyer Engineering, in McKinney, Texas, the broadcast engineering consulting company he founded in 1980. He handles all aspects of radio engineering, from FCC applications to supervising construction and design of transmitter plants. Before becoming a consultant, Sellmeyer worked for the Collins Radio Division of Rockwell International, an aviation and information technology systems company. He belongs to the IEEE Broadcast Technology Society.

Sellmeyer earned a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering in 1966 from Arizona State University.


Senior Member Eric Burger was appointed chief technology officer of NeuStar, in Sterling, Va. The company provides infrastructure services for communications service providers. He will oversee the early stages of new technology development and head the company’s service strategies area. Prior to his appointment, Burger was acting general manager of the Communications Products Division at BEA Systems, headquartered in San Jose, Calif. The company specializes in “middleware,” products that connect software applications to databases.

Burger is vice chair of the IEEE New Hampshire Section and a member of the IEEE Computer and Communications societies.

He received a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering in 1984 from MIT, a master’s in economics and marketing in 1990 from the Catholic University of Leuven, Belgium, and a doctorate in computer science in 2006 from the Illinois Institute of Technology, in Chicago.


Eta Kappa Nu named IEEE Life Fellow Eric Herz an Eminent Member. The electrical and computer engineering honor society recognized him with its highest membership classification for his contributions to the electrical and computer engineering profession through leadership roles in the society, IEEE, and related organizations. Only 122 people have been named to the grade since it was established in 1950. The elite group includes some of the most eminent innovators and leaders in engineering.

Herz is a former engineering and program manager in the aerospace industry and served as president of Eta Kappa Nu. He was an officer of the IEEE Foundation as well as general manager and executive director of IEEE for 14 years before retiring in 1992. He is now an IEEE director emeritus. An active volunteer, he held numerous positions, including chair of the San Diego Section, officer of Region 6, president of the IEEE Aerospace and Electronic Systems Society, IEEE vice president for Technical Activities, and leader in more than a dozen IEEE and inter-society conferences. He has been a member of the IEEE Board of Directors since 1976.

He earned a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering in 1952 from the Polytechnic Institute of Brooklyn (now the Polytechnic Institute of New York University), in New York City. He received an honorary Sc.D. in 1992 from Manhattan College, in New York City.


IEEE Fellow John A. Orr was elected a Fellow of the American Society for Engineering Education for his “sustained leadership in engineering education.”

Orr is provost and senior vice president at Worcester Polytechnic Institute, in Massachusetts. He has been a professor with the school’s electrical and computer engineering faculty since 1977. He served as department head for 15 years and is credited with developing a number of project-based programs at WPI.

He is a member of the IEEE Education Society and served as the society’s secretary in 2005 and 2006.

Orr earned a bachelor’s degree in 1969 from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, a master’s in 1970 from Stanford, and a doctorate in 1977, again at the University of Illinois, all in electrical engineering.


Senior Member Stephen B. Seidman was named dean of the College of Science at Texas State University, in San Marcos.

Seidman was previously dean of the College of Natural Sciences and Mathematics at the University of Central Arkansas, in Conway.

He is a recipient of the 2000 IEEE Third Millennium Medal. He’s also a member of the IEEE Computer Society and served as its secretary in 2005, its treasurer in 2006, and its vice president in 2007 and 2008. He received a bachelor’s degree in mathematics in 1964 from City College of New York, in New York City. He also earned master’s and doctoral degrees in mathematics in 1965 and 1969, from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor.


GigOptix, in Palo Alto, Calif., has appointed Fellow Alan Willner to its advisory board. He was selected for his optical communications expertise. The company designs and manufactures high-speed ICs for interconnecting optical and electronic systems.

Willner is a professor of electrical engineering at the University of Southern California, in Los Angeles. He conducts research in optical communications, optical signal processing, optical networks, fiber optics, and optical device technologies.

He is a member of the IEEE Photonics Society and received its Distinguished Lecturer Award in 1999. He traveled for several years lecturing on high-capacity, multiple-wavelength, optical-communication networks. Willner served as the society’s vice president from 1996 to 1998 and as president in 2006 and 2007. He was also editor-in-chief of technical publications such as the IEEE/OSA Journal of Lightwave Technology and the IEEE Journal of Selected Topics in Quantum Electronics.

He earned a bachelor’s degree in physics in 1982 from Yeshiva University, in New York City, and master’s and doctoral degrees in electrical engineering in 1984 and 1988 from Columbia.


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