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Brad Petersen
Director of
Communications
1066 ECE Building
306 N. Wright Street
Urbana, IL 61801
Phone: (217) 244-6376
bradp@illinois.edu

Contact Info

Meg Dickinson
Communications Specialist
1068 ECE Building
306 N. Wright Street
Urbana, IL 61801
Phone: (217) 300-6664
megd@illinois.edu

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Recent News

Alumnus Bob Johnson: brigadier general, electrical engineer and polo player at 89

Alumnus Bob Johnson: brigadier general, electrical engineer and polo player at 89

Alumnus Bob Johnson (BSEE '38) served in the pacific theatre of the Second World War, reached the rank of brigadier general, worked as an electrical engineer, and played competitive polo until the age of 87.

Başar invested as Swanlund Chair

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By Bridget Maiellaro, ECE Illinois
April 7, 2008

  • Professor Tamer Başar was honored as a Maybelle Leland Swanlund Endowed Chair at an investiture ceremony held in late March.
  • Başar said he was honored to be given the distinguished campus position and title.
  • Başar joins Professor Emeritus Karl Hess as the only other Swanlund Chair from the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering.

Tamer  Basar
Tamer Basar

ECE Professor Tamer Basar was formally inducted as a Maybelle Leland Swanlund Endowed Chair at an investiture ceremony held Monday, March 24. Başar was one of four University of Illinois professors named a Swanlund Chair, the highest endowed title at the University, in September 2007.

Chancellor Richard Herman, Provost Linda P B Katehi-Tseregounis, and Dean of the College of Engineering and Willett Professor Ilesanmi Adesida were among the many who attended the event, which honored Başar and Physics Professor Nigel Goldenfeld.

During the ceremony, Herman said that Başar and the other 18 Swanlund Chairs may be from various fields, but still have many things in common. He said that the “esteemed scholars” are brilliant, driven, creative, inspired, and add to the “seedbed of creativity” at the University. Meanwhile, Adesida described the inauguration of the two College of Engineering faculty members as a “homerun moment.”

After receiving the Swanlund Chair medal from Herman, Başar thanked his friends, family, colleagues and other attendees, and said he was honored to be given the distinguished campus position and title.

Given the intellectual environments of the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department, the Coordinated Science Laboratory, and the Center for Advanced Study, Başar said that one has to “try very hard not to be infected by the trademarks of the community—commitment to excellence and integrity.”

In addition to being a Swanlund Chair, Başar is the director of the Decision and Control Lab within the Coordinated Science Laboratory, a Center for Advanced Study Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering, and a research professor of the Information Trust Institute. He is a member of the National Academy of Engineering and is a fellow of both the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers and the International Federation of Automatic control.

Over the years, Başar, who joins Professor Emeritus Karl Hess as the only other Swanlund Chair from the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, has received numerous awards and recognitions. Such awards include the Richard E. Bellman Control Heritage Award in 2006, the Giorgio Quazza Medal from the International Federation of Automatic Control in 2005, and the Tau Beta Pi Daniel C. Drucker Eminent Faculty Award of the College of Engineering in 2004.

Başar has authored or co-authored more than 200 journal articles and book chapters, and has more than 250 conference publications in his name. His current research interests include optimal control and sensing over networks; creating security and trust in communication and computer networks; and remote control over networks under rate constraints, among others.

After receiving his bachelor’s in electrical engineering from Robert College (now Bogazici University) in Instanbul, Turkey, in 1969, Başar earned his MS, MPhil, and PhD in engineering and applied science from Yale University in 1970, 1971, and 1972, respectfully.

Başar, Goldenfeld, and the other 2007 Swanlund Chairs, Arthur F. Kramer of the Psychology Department and Gene E. Robinson of the Entomology Department, were recognized at a reception on Oct. 3, 2007. An investiture ceremony for Kramer and Robinson will take place in April.

The Swanlund Chair is named for Maybelle Leland Swanlund, who provided $12 million for chairs, as a way to recognize faculty members who have made exceptional contributions in their fields. Swanlund received a degree in library studies from Illinois in 1932. She died in 1993.

Editor's note: media inquiries should be directed to Brad Petersen, Director of Communications, at bradp@illinois.edu or (217) 244-6376.

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