William B. Bonvillian, director of the MIT Washington, D.C., office and a former legislative director and chief counsel for Sen. Joseph Lieberman (D-Conn.), has been presented with a 2006 Distinguished Public Service Award by the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE-USA) "for outstanding support of science and technology-related legislation and policy in the U.S. Congress."
Bonvillian and David J. Goldston, currently a scholar-in-residence with the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs at Princeton, will share the Distinguished Public Service Award.
"Their support for investment in high-tech research and development (R&D) has helped to boost U.S. competitiveness and contributed greatly to our nation's innovation enterprise," IEEE-USA President John Meredith said.
"This helps U.S. engineers thrive in an increasingly competitive global environment," he said.
Bonvillian will join 17 award recipients to be honored during the IEEE-USA annual meeting in Scottsdale, Ariz., in September.
According to award materials, Bonvillian has been a "stalwart supporter" of federal R&D programs since his tenure in the Department of Transportation (1977-1980). He is credited for developing a wide array of initiatives for Lieberman, including the Clean Air Act (1990); the Technology Talent Act (2001); the Homeland Security Department Authorization (2002); the National Nanotechnology R&D Act (2003); and the National Innovation Act (2005), among others.
IEEE-USA award recipients are recognized for their professionalism and technical achievements, as well as literary contributions to public awareness and understanding of the engineering profession in the United States.
A version of this article appeared in MIT Tech Talk on May 2, 2007 (download PDF).