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about bill

National Academy
of Engineering








Awards & Recognition




National Academy of Engineering, 2022

Bill was are among the 111 new members and 22 international members elected to the National Academy of Engineering for 2022. Election to the National Academy of Engineering is among the highest professional distinctions accorded to an engineer. Academy membership honors those who have made outstanding contributions to "engineering research, practice, or education, including, where appropriate, significant contributions to the engineering literature" and to "the pioneering of new and developing fields of technology, making major advancements in traditional fields of engineering, or developing/implementing innovative approaches to engineering education."

hoover medal

hoover medal

Hoover Medal

Various engineering societies, 2020

This 14 kt gold medal “commemorates the civic and humanitarian achievements of engineers.” It is conferred upon an engineer whose professional achievements and personal endeavors have advanced the well-being of humankind.” Administered by a board representing five engineering organizations: The American Society of Mechanical Engineers, the American Society of Civil Engineers, the American Institute of Chemical Engineers, the American Institute of Mining, Metallurgical and Petroleum Engineers and the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers. His speech on accepting the Hoover Medal can be read here.

nsb medallion

nsb medallion

Public Service Award

National Science Board, 2020

The Public Service Award honors individuals and groups that have made substantial contributions to increasing public understanding of science and engineering in the United States. These contributions may be in a wide variety of areas that have the potential of contributing to public understanding of and appreciation for science and engineering, including: media, education, training programs, and entertainment.


roe medal

Ralph Coats Roe Medal

American Society of Mechanical Engineers, 2020

This Gold Medal, and a $12,000 prize, “recognizes an outstanding contribution toward a better public understanding and appreciation of the engineer’s worth to contemporary society.”

sagan award

sagan award

Carl Sagan Award for the Public Appreciation of Science

Council of Scientific Society Presidents, 2019

For increasing the public appreciation of science. Its purpose is to honor those who have become concurrently accomplished as researchers and/or educators, and as widely recognized magnifiers of the public’s understanding of science.

grady stack medal

grady stack medal

James T. Grady-James H. Stack Award for Interpreting Chemistry for the Public

American Chemical Society, 2004

To recognize, encourage, and stimulate outstanding reporting directly to the public, which materially increases the public's knowledge and understanding of chemistry, chemical engineering, and related fields. The award consists of $5,000, a medallion with a presentation box, and a certificate.

church medal

church medal

Edwin F. Church Medal

American Society for Mechanical Engineers, 2002

The Edwin F. Church Medal, established in 1972, is awarded to an individual who has rendered eminent service in increasing the value, importance and attractiveness of mechanical engineering education. Education is used here in its broadest sense of preparation for any aspect or level of mechanical engineering through any appropriate mechanism including universities, technical institutes, professional society educational activities, continuing education programs of professional societies and private groups, in-house professional development programs of industrial concerns and governmental agencies, programmed learning and self-instruction systems.

Other Awards and Recognition

First Prize, 2011, Science OnLine Film Festival (inaugural prize)

Fellow, 2009, American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS)

Fellow, 2009, American Institute of Physics

Jefferson Science Fellow, 2005, U.S. Department of State

Science Writing Award, 2004, American Institute of Physics

Distinguished Literary Contribution Furthering the Public Understanding of the Profession, 2004, IEEE

President’s Award, 2003, American Society for Engineering Education

Silver Reel National News & Commentaries, 2003, National Federation of Community Broadcasters

Science-in-Society Award, 2002, National Association of Science Writers

Service to Society Award, 2002, American Institute of Chemical Engineers

Teacher-Scholar Award, 1993, Camille and Henry Dreyfus Foundation

The ExxonMobil Award Faculty Fellowship in Solid State Chemistry, 1992, American Chemical Society