Inspiring the Future

Donor Profiles 2021

Maxine_CohenBringing Support Full Circle

Maxine Cohen, Ph.D.
Member Grade: Life Member

According to IEEE Life Member Maxine Cohen, Ph.D., Professor Emerita, College of Computing and Engineering at Nova Southeastern University in Fort Lauderdale, FL, US, “I grew up with IRE/IEEE magazines and journals in our house since my father was a Quality Control Engineer, so for as long as I can remember, IEEE was part of my vocabulary.”

A former faculty member at The State University of New York at Binghamton, US, Cohen joined the IEEE Computer Society in 1982, became an IEEE Life Member in 2018, and has been an active volunteer, serving on IEEE’s Senior Member Review Panels and as the Region 3 Representative to the Admissions and Advancement Committee and preparing reviews for such IEEE publications as IEEE Spectrum, IEEE Transactions on Education, and IEEE Software.  “This year I joined the Board of IEEE’s Society on Social Implications of Technology (SSIT) and was also appointed to the Publication and Presentation sub-committee of the IEEE Awards Board,” she said.
Cohen joined the Life Member Committee (LMC) in 2019, and, “since I no longer had to pay membership dues as a Life Member, I decided to allocate those funds (plus a bit more) and joined the Heritage Circle,” she said of her recent donation to the LMC.  “I liked how I could commit to a sizable donation but spread it out over time, and IEEE Foundation personnel were extremely helpful in facilitating everything, especially during the pandemic.  Member donations to the LMC are very important and being actively involved in the LMC allows me to play a part in funding the scholarships, awards, and other interesting projects they support.”

“It’s good for Life Members to continue supporting the LMC or another facet of IEEE that has meaning to them,” concluded Cohen, who’s excited to help encourage more young girls to enter the STEM fields and to see IEEE’s dedication to supporting diversity and inclusion.  “It feels good to give back to an organization that’s provided so much to me in my professional life.”

William GoodinWilliam R Goodin, Ph.D.
Member Grade: Life Senior Member
Dr. William Goodin has more than 35 years of experience in alumni and corporate networking and partnerships, mentorship, and alumni relations. He currently helps alumni and corporate partners stay connected and involved with UCLA and UCLA Engineering and helps engineering students connect with alumni and corporate partners for career opportunities.  
He was previously Associate Director of Alumni Relations at the UCLA Samueli School of Engineering. Prior to that he was Director of the Short Course Program at UCLA Extension, where he was responsible for several hundred courses in computer and information systems, engineering, and technical management for customers around the world.
Dr. Goodin volunteers as Alumni Advisor for IEEE-HKN at UCLA, Chief Advisor for Tau Beta Pi, Counselor for Society of Women Engineers, and an Alumni Advisor for IEEE. He has been honored to receive the Rodney D. Chipp Memorial Award from SWE, the MacDonald Mentor Award from TBP, and the Outstanding Branch Counselor Award from IEEE.
Dr. Goodin holds a BA in mathematics from San Jose State University, an MS in computer science, a Ph.D. in environmental engineering, and an MEngr in engineering management, all from UCLA.

Why did you choose to study the engineering field (or the field you studied)?

I was an undergraduate mathematics major, who moved into computer science for graduate study, as that field was expanding in the late 1960s. My interest in computational methods and numerical analysis evolved into computational fluid dynamics and environmental engineering in the early 1970s, specializing in modeling of atmospheric pollution.

What do you love about engineering?

I enjoy creative thinking and problem solving.

Whom do you admire and why?

I admire those who are experts in their fields and are also able to teach and mentor the next generation.

How has the engineering field changed since you entered it?

Engineers now have much easier access to current information through the web.  Also, much more powerful computational tools for problem solving.

In what direction do you think that the engineering and other IEEE fields of interest are headed in the next 10 years?

Artificial intelligence breakthroughs will have a dramatic impact on all fields of engineering.

What is the most important lesson you have learned during your time in the field?

The ability to communicate clearly and effectively is an important skill for all engineers.

What advice can you offer recent graduates entering the field?

Practice your writing and presentation skills. Seek opportunities to go beyond what is required.

What is your favorite Eta Kappa Nu memory?

I was initiated along with (HKN Eminent Member) Dr. Asad M. Madni in a special ceremony chaired by Professor Alan N. Willson, Jr., (IEEE-HKN Distinguished Service Award recipient and Iota Gamma founding advisor, 1984-2017). Prof. Willson has retired from UCLA, but I still see Dr. Madni frequently.

Why do you support IEEE-HKN?

I am honored to be a member of IEEE-HKN and believe in supporting organizations that provide so many educational and professional benefits to their members.

What are the greatest opportunities for IEEE-HKN over the next three years?

I hope that IEEE-HKN will use its influence and technical expertise to help fight climate change.

Bahman_HoveidaHoveida Family Foundation Invests in the Future of the Power and Energy Through PES S+ Scholarships

Bahman Hoveida

Member Grade: Life Senior Member

Long before founding a company that revolutionized the automation systems business for control of power grids (Open Systems International, which grew from four engineers to over one thousand employees worldwide), Bahman Hoveida joined the IEEE on the suggestion of one of his Electrical Engineering (EE)  professors. Through his IEEE membership, Mr. Hoveida found a strong supportive professional community, a chance to connect with colleagues in his field, have access to qualified engineers for hire –and of course access to Technical Proceedings of the IEEE and IEEE sponsored conferences and resources so vital to EE students. 

Now an IEEE Life Senior Member, and retired from the company he founded and sold, Mr. Hoveida continues to follow the power and energy industry and support various startups in the energy and clean-tech industries. Additionally, Mr. Hoveida is involved in philanthropic and charitable causes through the Hoveida Family Foundation.

One of Hoveida Family Foundation’s initial gifts was an endowment for the IEEE Foundation to support exemplary scholars.  In November 2021, the IEEE Power & Energy Society (PES) Scholarship Plus Initiative announced the 72 high-achieving undergraduate electrical engineering scholars to be honored as 2021-2022 PES Scholars with strong GPAs and distinctive extracurricular commitments who are exploring the power and energy field. 

Of the total, 33 are Hoveida Family Foundation Scholars; these undergraduate students majoring in electrical engineering benefit profoundly from this endowment, and Mr. Hoveida sees supporting their education as an investment in a sustainable future for us all. “We need a lot of young, fresh minds to solve the world's energy problems through innovation. The planet’s existence depends on this. The commitment of new students to environmental causes impresses me,” he says. 
“The majority of young people entering technical schools have an interest in environmental causes and helping the planet through sound engineering innovation,” which he explains was not something he experienced during his undergraduate years in the 1980s. 

News of Hoveida Family Foundation’s endowment has reverberated through IEEE and IEEE Foundation. IEEE Foundation Director John McDonald’s 30-year friendship with Mr. Hoveida gives him insight into how well this cause fits with his friend’s ideals, as he has always empowered others to do their very best:  “I met Bahman over 30 years ago and supported his company, Open Systems International (OSI), with strategic contract awards when I was with KEMA Consulting,” John says. 
 “I respect Bahman very much and value our friendship. He empowers others to do their very best while staying in the background, not needing any recognition for himself. When Bahman sold his company and established the Hoveida Family Foundation, he said he “would love to support educational and science causes.”
When Bahman learned about the IEEE PES Scholarship Plus program, to encourage Electrical Engineering students to take courses and work in the power and energy industry, it was a perfect fit for the goals of his new Hoveida Family Foundation!

For the 33 scholarship recipients, Hovieda Family Foundation’s investment will follow them throughout their careers, carving the path to a sustainable future that brings power and energy to every community. The students will receive a financial award, one year of IEEE PES student membership, and have the opportunity to be mentored by leading professionals in the power and energy industry as they begin to explore a career path that ensures the grid shifts and grows alongside the society to which it brings power and energy. One can only imagine that the college sophomore Bahman Hoveida once was would be incredibly proud of the Hoveida Family Foundation’s investment in students like him, and the future IEEE Foundation and PES S+ value so deeply. 

Jack JewellCelebrating “IEEE’s Community”

Jack Jewell

Member Grade: Fellow
As a valued IEEE Member and current Fellow, the IEEE has played an instrumental role in Jack Jewell’s life and career for over 30 years.

“I always loved participating in IEEE’s community and still do!” confirmed Jewell, who said that his “mouth watered” when the latest Photonics Technology Letters arrived in the mail.  Among other activities, “IEEE’s Distinguished Lecturer program funded a nationwide tour to visit great scientists at their facilities, and conferences are festivals of learning, camaraderie, and friendship.  In standards meetings, especially Ethernet P802.3, I additionally experienced a blend of technology and business with a dash of politics -- all of which have helped me grow as a person.”

Jewell’s recent donations to REACH, the IEEE Foundation Fund, the Photonics Society, and the IEEE Awards Program Fund (which involved his donation of a cash prize he'd received) reflected his desire to give back to an organization which gives so much to the field.
“I believe that education, especially STEMA, is crucial for our cultural growth and stability,” he explained.  “The REACH program nurtures curiosity and excitement about science in kids, which is great.  My general contributions to the IEEE Foundation and Photonics Society reflect our shared goals and my trust that the funds will be applied to my areas of interest.  And while I treasure the monetary Photonics Award I received for my technical work, I decided that it was best to leave the cash at its source to be used appropriately,” he said.  “I hope that the donations will enhance people’s lives, both professionally and personally.”
Ultimately, Jewell concluded, “contributing to IEEE extends our capabilities beyond our own personal professions.  IEEE’s programs also reach out to people around the world, and I think it’s especially valuable that IEEE reaches out to poorer countries/villages through initiatives like Smart Village.”

Anthony VetroMitsubishi Electric Research Labs (MERL)
MEMBER GRADE:  IEEE Heritage Circle
Helping to Shape the Future of the Field
“I’ve been an IEEE member for 30 years and have always found tremendous value in the services that IEEE provides,” shared Anthony Vetro, Vice President & Director, Mitsubishi Electric Research Labs (MERL) in Cambridge, MA, US and an IEEE Fellow.  “While the technical conferences and journals have played a key role in keeping our team at MERL current on the latest research and technical trends, IEEE has also provided us with many opportunities to network and build leadership -- all of which are essential to our individual professional development and growth as well as the vitality of the company.  This is a key reason why we support IEEE membership, encourage staff to publish and present their work, and also sponsor and volunteer for various IEEE society activities.”
Vetro’s own extensive volunteerism at IEEE includes everything from chairing technical committees and conferences and serving as an Associate/Guest Editor for several IEEE journals to currently serving as a Member-at-Large on the IEEE Signal Processing Society’s Board of Governors.  “These roles have not only offered me a way to give back to the community,” Vetro said, “but they continue to provide an opportunity to stimulate and shape the future of our society, including developing the next generation of forward-thinking leaders.”
Regarding its recent sponsorship of both the IEEE James L. Flanagan Speech and Audio Processing Award and the IEEE Fourier Award for Signal Processing, “MERL believes that it’s very important for industry to be actively involved and engaged with the scientific community and has been a long-time sponsor of many IEEE conferences and best paper awards,” Vetro said.  “When the opportunity to sponsor an IEEE level award came up, we jumped at the chance, and, since we have researchers working broadly in all areas of signal processing, we decided to sponsor both awards!”

“MERL is very proud to support the recognition of outstanding contributions to signal processing through these awards,” he concluded.  “The award recipients are an inspiration for the whole IEEE community and we believe that it’s very important to celebrate their creativity and innovation in the field, which touches many aspects of our lives and drives our society forward.”

Professor HeiderEntrusting the Future to IEEE

Robert Heider
Member Grade:  Member
As a valued IEEE member since 2009, Robert Heider brings extensive industry expertise to the engineering field based on his over 50 years of experience as a process control engineer with emphasis on the design of advanced process controls and process development with such organizations as Monsanto, Emerson, and Confluence Solar.  But he’ll also be opening new doors for both future engineers and industry advancements since naming the IEEE Foundation as the sole beneficiary of his trust -- a generous gift to be distributed over a 10-year period through which Heider will support the awarding of scholarships to worthy undergraduate electrical engineering students attending ABET-accredited institutions in the U.S.

“I believe in upward mobility for young people and think that engineering is a path for this,” shared Heider, a former professor at Washington University in St. Louis who enjoys operating amateur radios in his spare time.  “There are many young people who have the drive and curiosity to complete an engineering degree and be good engineers, but perhaps lack the advantage of a good primary education or the right home life to develop and motivate them.  It’s important for us to develop future engineers, in particular EE,” he said, “and I want to see young people succeed.”

A longtime philanthropist, Heider currently supports two scholarships, one at Washington University, and the second for the joint Washington University, University of Missouri – St. Louis joint engineering program, has previously donated to IEEE Foundation programs designed to get teens interested in engineering, and now takes great pride in gifting 100% of the residuary from his trust to the IEEE Foundation.

“I want to make sure that my estate goes directly to students in need,” said Heider, whose confidence in partnering with IEEE is based on his own personal experience with the organization as well as its positive rating on Charity Navigator.  “If I donate it to an academic institution, it continues to build their endowment, and in many cases those funds are too large and not accessible to students who could truly benefit from them.”

Ultimately, said Heider, a new member of the Goldsmith Legacy League, IEEE’s elite legacy giving recognition group, “I trust the IEEE Foundation to ensure that what I leave goes to scholarships for deserving students.”

Rafi KoutobyGiving Back by Supporting IEEE Initiatives

Rafi Koutoby
Member Grade: Member  

As an active IEEE member throughout his student years at California State University-Long Beach (US), Rafi Koutoby -- now a Distribution Engineer at utility company Southern California Edison in Pomona, CA, US -- confirmed that his years-long affiliation with IEEE has proven invaluable, both personally and professionally.

“My IEEE and Eta Kappa Nu (HKN) memberships have helped me network and build relationships with several professionals in my field around the world,” Koutoby said.  “Having access to some publications through those memberships has also been a huge plus.” 

In recent years, Koutoby has donated to everything from the IEEE Foundation Fund and Eta Kappa Nu to EPICS, Smart Village, REACH, and more.  “These initiatives appealed to me because, at the most basic level, engineering is about utilizing applied sciences to analyze problems and solve them,” he explained.  “It excites me that the missions of REACH, EPICS, and others involve them in such activities as community service, community electrification, history education, and more through the medium of engineering projects.” 

“For me,” Koutoby added, “it also goes back to values -- the values my parents instilled in me, the values my religion imparts in me, the values recognized and sought out by IEEE-Eta Kappa Nu, and the values strengthened at Southern California Edison, where I’m employed.  Giving back is a huge part of what all of those values taught me, and it’s at the core of why I donate to a variety of IEEE’s initiatives.”

Looking ahead, “I hope that my donations will help support IEEE’s efforts by providing aid to those who need it and by inspiring people to pursue engineering as a career,” Koutoby said.  “The value of contributing to IEEE and its programs comes from making a difference when we’re not able to do so physically, and it also helps to empower and inspire others.”

John McDonaldJohn and Jo-Ann McDonald Pledge Support to PES S+ and HKN Student Chapter Support

John McDonald
Member Grade: Fellow

With 47 years of experience in the electric utility transmission and distribution industry, his role as an IEEE Foundation Director, and his one hundred fifty published papers and articles, it may be hard to imagine John D. McDonald as an undergraduate student at Purdue University. Yet, in 1971, it was coed John who first joined both IEEE and the Power & Energy Society (PES), and was inducted into HKN, initiating vital relationships that have spanned five decades. Throughout these past 50 years, John has remained a steadfast supporter (both as a donor and as a volunteer) of IEEE and the IEEE Foundation. His unwavering and dedicated commitment of his time, talent and treasure  nurtures the next generation of innovators and advances technology for the benefit of humanity.

In celebration of his 50 year anniversary as an IEEE and HKN member, John and his wife, Jo-Ann made two new and significant four-year pledges to the IEEE Foundation. The first gift, to the IEEE Power & Energy Society Scholarship Plus Initiative, will help promising students become successful practitioners in the field of power & energy. The second gift seeds the IEEE-HKN Student Chapter Support Program, which is scheduled to launch in March 2022 and designed to fuel the innovation and ingenuity of IEEE-HKN, its Chapters and its members. In recognition of the McDonald’s philanthropic spirit of giving back, they have been elevated to the Thomas A. Edison Circle (US$100,000 to US$249,000) of the IEEE Heritage Circle. 

John says, “When I was inducted into HKN as a second year Electrical Engineering student at Purdue it gave me confidence that I was doing well in Electrical Engineering in a tough, competitive curriculum. This confidence has remained with me for more than 50 years since my induction on May 2, 1971. The PES Scholarship Plus Initiative has influenced many undergraduate Electrical Engineering students to take power engineering courses, and to have internships and co-op work sessions in the power and energy industry. Both IEEE PES and HKN have helped my career so significantly that Jo-Ann and I wanted to ‘give back’ to show our appreciation. I’ve been an IEEE member for more than 50 years, and Jo-Ann and I have been married 42 years, so Jo-Ann has been an important partner with me in IEEE.”

Throughout his years in the electric utility industry, John has pursued his passion for encouraging young people to become involved in power engineering. In 2011, John volunteered to participate in the scholar selection process of the IEEE PES Scholarship Plus Initiative, wherein he evaluated and scored applications in the first five years of the initiative from 2011 through 2015. He would have continued but he was term-limited after five years. “I was impressed with the quality of the student applications and encouraged that these motivated, exceptional students were the future of IEEE PES and our industry,” John explained.

John served on the IEEE PES Governing Board for 12 years, where he held elected positions as Secretary and President, He served on the IEEE Board of Directors as IEEE Division VII Director and the IEEE Standards Association Board of Governors. During the five decades John has been a part of the IEEE community, his generosity and commitment to the ideals of IEEE

Noel SchultzHarnessing the Power of Cumulative Giving

Noel N. Schulz, Ph.D.
Member Grade: Fellow

Noel N. Schulz, Ph.D. is no stranger to the act of philanthropy within her field. A nationally-recognized expert in power systems engineering, Dr. Schulz is Washington State University’s First Lady (her husband Kirk Schulz is WSU President) and the Edmund O. Schweitzer III Chair in Power Apparatus and Systems in the WSU School of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, Voiland College of Engineering and Architecture. Prior to joining the WSU faculty in 2016, she served as Associate Dean for Research and Graduate Programs in the College of Engineering at Kansas State University and has long been dedicated to recruiting, retaining, and mentoring women in the field of engineering.
As a longtime IEEE member and current Fellow, Dr. Schulz has been active on the Governing Boards of IEEE’s Power & Engineering Society (PES) from 2004-2015, including serving as President from 2012-2013, and had donated to a wide range of initiatives through the IEEE Foundation throughout her life and career, including the History Center Fund, PES Scholarship Plus, and most recently IEEE Smart Village (ISV), through which she has personally witnessed the positive impact that ISV funds and innovative solutions are having on sustainable development within served communities.

According to Dr. Schulz and her husband (who became members of the IEEE Heritage Circle in 2020 in recognition of their spirit of cumulative giving), “the process of donating monthly and/or steadily to IEEE over time can accomplish the same level of impact on an initiative as a larger donation without being an excessive burden on one’s personal finances.”

“We encourage others to adopt this cumulative method of providing support,” confirmed Dr. Schulz, “as it has and continues to have a major impact on the livelihood of IEEE programs.”

Peter WildHelping IEEE Preserve History

Peter J. Wild

Member Grade: Life Member
According to Peter J. Wild, his more than 50-year affiliation with IEEE has proven invaluable to his career.

“I became a member of IEEE after completing my studies as an electronics engineer at the ETH in Zurich, Switzerland in 1964,” recalled Wild.  He soon moved to the San Francisco Bay Area, US for work and to pursue further studies in computer science at the University of California, Berkeley and was inducted into IEEE-HKN upon his graduation in 1968.  “At the time, IEEE already had a broad spectrum of activities and interesting publications that helped me in my work as a product development engineer,” said Wild, who returned to Switzerland and began working in the then-new field of information displays using liquid crystals and subsequently in telecommunications.  “As I’d changed my professional focus several times, IEEE publications and conferences helped me to get acquainted with new fields of work,” he said.

As the author of a First-Hand History report on his work with liquid crystal displays (LCDs) for the IEEE History Center as well as a contributor to/editor for Wikipedia, “IEEE Spectrum was a helpful resource based on its broad range of topics, and when some of the IEEE History Center’s activities were transferred to the Engineering and Technology History Wiki (ethw.org), I made sure that ETHW was properly represented in both the English and German-language Wikipedia,” he said.

“IEEE impresses me by its depth of accumulated technical knowledge, its international reach in our professions, and the endeavors supported by the IEEE Foundation,” concluded Wild, who resides in Switzerland.  “Since the IEEE Foundation supports the IEEE History Center, I contributed to the History Center Fund and hope it can continue doing its valuable work in preserving and adding not only Milestones, but also titles such as Oral and First-Hand Histories.”

Don HeirmanPioneer Don Heirman’s Generous Giving Paves the Way for Future Innovation
Heirman’s estate gifts honor his lifelong legacy and will indelibly support critical IEEE initiatives 

Though industry giant Donald (Don) N. Heirman sadly passed in October 2020 at the age of 80, the pioneer in the field of electromagnetic compatibility (EMC) not only left an indelible legacy of innovation behind him, he provided for the field’s future success and forward motion through his generous estate gifts to IEEE.

After receiving his BSEE and MSEE degrees from Purdue University (West Lafayette, IN, US) in 1962 and 1963, respectively, Heirman began a more-than-a-half-century-long career that would involve monumental contributions to the field of EMC. Among them, the industry leader widely known as “Mr. EMC Standards” spent more than 30 years at Bell Laboratories/Lucent Technologies, where he headed up the Corporation’s major EMC and regulatory test facility and its participation in The American National Standards Institute (ANSI) accredited standards and international EMC standardization committees. He chaired or was a principal contributor to the US and international EMC standards organizations, including ANSI, IEEE, and the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC), and served as president of the IEEE Standards Association (SA), and as a member of the IEEE Board of Directors. A retired Commander in the US Navy, Heirman was an IEEE Life Fellow, a Life Member of the IEEE EMC Society (EMCS), and a member of its Board of Directors. In 2018, he received the prestigious IEEE Richard M. Emberson Award for Standardization of Electromagnetic Compatibility, reducing low and radio frequency noise in telephone circuits, and designing and operating compliance test facilities over the course of 30 years at Bell Labs. In his acceptance speech, Heirman acknowledged the privilege and honor it has been to be part of IEEE for 50+ years. 

Upon Heirman’s retirement from Bell Labs in 1997, he started his own consulting business, Don Heirman Consultants, in which he specialized in standards education and training in the field of EMC and remained active until his death.

A role model for young engineers and pre-engineers in all fields, Heirman was a champion of education, the preservation of the history of technology, and ongoing innovation in the engineering and EMC disciplines – a commitment that was reflected by his generous gifts to the various IEEE program, initiatives and activities he held dear upon his passing. Targets of his estate gifts include the following:

  • The IEEE History Center, to advance its work to preserve the history of IEEE by supporting the cataloging of the history of IEEE Society contributions, including those of the IEEE EMC Society
  • The IEEE Standards Association, to support the continuation of joint projects with the IEEE Educational Activities Board that expand, encourage, and promote IEEE’s Standards Education Program
  • IEEE- Eta Kappa Nu (HKN) Chapter at Purdue University, to support his beloved HKN (the honor society of IEEE) at his alma mater
  • The IEEE Foundation, to support its broad range of IEEE initiatives.

In his IEEE History Center oral history interview conducted in February 2015, Heirman reflected on his long, colorful and productive career, confiding that “I've been around a long time -- 50 years in the business -- and I wouldn't take anything back.”

Don Heirman’s well-indexed collection of paper materials, photographs and artifacts were left posthumously to IEEE History Center Archives. “The Don Heirman collection provides a unique look at standards at IEEE, as well as the operations of the IEEE Electromagnetic Compatibility Society, over the course of more than 30 years,” said Michael N. Geselowitz, Ph.D., Senior Director of the IEEE History Center.  

IEEE sincerely thanks Don Heirman for his renowned contributions to the industry throughout his life and for all that he continues to give to future generations through his generous legacy estate gifts, all of which will pave the way for continued innovation, growth, and success in the engineering field. The IEEE Foundation proudly recognizes Donald N. Heirman as a Forever Generous member of the IEEE Goldsmith Legacy League.

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