Two inducted into Thomas Green Clemson Academy
Two alumni received the College of Engineering and Science’s highest honor and two others were recognized as Outstanding Young Alumni at an annual banquet that brought together their families, past honorees and top Clemson University officials.
Gerald Marvin Glenn and Ronald C. Lindsay were inducted into the Thomas Green Clemson Academy of Engineers and Scientists, a distinction that goes to fewer than 0.2 percent of the college’s graduates.
Cara Cornelius and Robert J. Webster, III were honored as Outstanding Young Alumni.
The college’s dean, Anand Gramopadhye, also singled out former interim Vice President for Research Larry Dooley for special recognition.
Each honoree was recognized for outstanding career achievements, significant contributions to society through professional or service activities, or notable contributions to engineering or science practice.
Gramopadhye said that each honoree has a story to tell and that all serve as inspirational motivators.
“While success may be defined in any number of ways, the true measure of success is the impact one has on the world around them,” he said. “All of our inductees tonight far exceed those qualifications.”
A review committee considers nominations and makes the selections. The committee is made up the college’s dean, senior engineering and science faculty members, college alumni, and representatives from the college advisory board.
Here is more on each honoree:
Gerald Marvin Glenn: His life and career can be summarized by excellence, an uncanny work ethic and service to others.
Glenn graduated from Clemson with a civil engineering degree in 1964. Upon graduation, he went on to an amazing professional career that spanned more than 40 years and included posts as leader of two Fortune 500 firms.
As group president and member of the Fluor Daniel Board of Directors, Glenn was instrumental in Fluor’s rise to being named the number one engineering and construction firm in the world by the Engineering News-Record.
After a brief early retirement in 1996, Glenn was aggressively sought out to serve as CEO and president of Chicago Bridge and Iron, Inc., a position he held for 10 years.
Once again, under Glenn’s leadership CBI’s revenues grew from hundreds of millions of dollars to more than $14 billion today. Glenn is the single most important reason behind the exponential growth and sustained performance for both of these multi-national Fortune 500 firms. He is a global player who has left a world-wide legacy of excellence and impact.
But charity begins at home, and Glenn has also been active in his community. He has served on countless boards and foundations, from the local school board to the board of directors for numerous hospitals and charities.
He has given generously to many Clemson initiatives with both financial gifts and leadership. He served for many years on the President’s Advisory Board, and currently is a member of the Clemson University Foundation Board of Directors.
His $5 million gift to the Glenn Department of Civil Engineering means that it is now one of only four U.S. endowed civil engineering programs. This has set the stage for the department’s ascension toward elite status as a program.
In short, Glenn is the consummate advocate and ambassador for Clemson University, the college, and department.
Ronald C. Lindsay: He graduated magna cum laude with his a bachelor of science in chemical engineering in 1980. Shortly thereafter he accepted a position with the Eastman Chemical Company.
Lindsay started out as an entry-level process improvement engineer and has risen to the highest levels of the company.
Throughout his career, Lindsay has shown great adaptability by serving, leading and excelling in a very broad range of roles. For example, Ron has been a director of three different manufacturing divisions, had P&L responsibility for several business organizations and has been the chief technology officer for the company.
He is currently the inaugural chief operating officer for Eastman Chemical Company, a Fortune 500 company with $ 10 billion dollars in annual revenue.
Lindsay has been instrumental in leading the company through a transformation from a mostly commodities company to a specialty company, realizing six continuous years of earnings growth in very challenging times, and achieving this in the right way – ethically and safely.
Eastman recently received the inaugural “top company” designation in the Specialty segment for “Advancing Excellence in Process Safety.”
For the last three years Eastman has also received recognition as one of the “World ‘s Most Ethical Companies” by Ethisphere and Glassdoor’s “Best Place to Work.”
Lindsay is a member of the American Institute of Chemical Engineers and served as chair of the Advisory Board for the College of Engineering and Science at Clemson University.
On the personal side, Lindsay is a generous, caring person. He is a very active supporter of the United Way in Kingsport, Tennessee, and he has also served on the board of the local American Red Cross, and a local private school, Tri-Cities Christian School.
Lindsay is a rare mix of talent, character and experience.
Cara Cornelius: After completing her undergraduate degree in 1998 Cornelius started her career at Milliken. She had an immediate impact by implementing costing procedures for its fabric forming and slashing processes.
She was quickly placed in charge of designing and implementing scheduling systems for more than 40 American-affiliated companies. Cornelius’ successful design and implementation of scheduling systems for U.S. manufacturing operations led to her being named team leader for Milliken’s European projects.
Her achievements led to a career opportunity with TCI Tire Centers in 2007. Initially she oversaw 15 regional logistics centers, where she improved efficiencies and reduced costs.
After building a Supply Chain and Logistics department for the company in 2009, she instituted best practices that resulted in a reduction of $25 million dollars in inventory and a decrease of sales, general and administrative expenses by over $5 million per year.
Her successful experience in supply chain, logistics and European project management brought her to the attention of the Michelin Manufacturing Company. She accepted a position in Clermont-Ferrand, France and was responsible for the development of the European logistics division.
She is currently the vice president of customer service and is based in Greenville.
Cornelius has served on the industrial engineering department’s Advisory Board, and she has donated to the Freeman Scholarship Fund.
She has worked with the Junior League of Greenville for several years, and she is currently serving on the board of the Greenville Humane Society.
Robert J. Webster, III: He was one of the best students that ever went through the Holcombe Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering. He ran the table of departmental awards: Most Outstanding Sophomore, Most Outstanding Junior, and Most Outstanding Senior in Electrical Engineering.
After he earned his bachelor of science degree in 2002, he went on to secure master’s and Ph.D. degrees from Johns Hopkins University.
Webster’s Ph.D. dissertation won the IEEE Volz Award, which honored the most impactful U.S. Ph.D. dissertation published in 2007 in the field of robotics.
He is currently an associate professor of mechanical engineering at Vanderbilt University. Webster’s research involves applying robotics to a wide range of medical applications.
He won an award through the National Science Foundation Faculty Early Career Development Program, and he recently received the Early Career Award of the IEEE Robotics and Automation Society. His effectiveness in the classroom brought him the Vanderbilt School of Engineering Award for Excellence in Teaching.
Webster has been very productive in his academic career.
He has published 55 journal papers, and he has won eight best paper or best poster awards. He holds six patents with 20 additional patents pending. He has been the principal investigator on $9.5 million of sponsored research at Vanderbilt.
Webster is recognized as one of the top young researchers in the field of robotics, and this success brings esteem to Clemson as well as to himself.
Larry Dooley: He has been an outstanding researcher, mentor, and an administrator. Dooley effectively chaired the Department of Bioengineering, served as the associate dean of research and graduate studies and advanced the college as its interim dean.
In his most recent assignment Larry served as the interim vice president for research.
Whenever he has been called to serve, Dooley has responded with enthusiasm and grace. His lasting legacy is built upon a deeply felt commitment to Clemson and an abiding affection for the university’s faculty, students and staff.