Professor Dereje Agonafer, Jenkins Garrett Professor of mechanical engineering at the University of Texas, was selected as the 2014 NSBE Golden Torch Award honoree for Golden Torch Legacy Award and will be saluted at the 17th Annual Golden Torch Awards on March 29.
The award is the highest award given at the annual NSBE conference with a citation: “For selfless dedication and achievements, this award is given to an individual who has had an historical impact on the African-American community on a global basis. This individual has exhibited a spirit of determination and perseverance and has had to overcome and endure many challenges along the way. The honoree is chosen at a national level. Included in this award is a lifetime membership to the National Society of Black Engineers.”
Dereje Agonafer’s current research areas are broad ranging from his activities as director of two centers – “Electronics MEMS and Nanoelectronics Systems Packaging Center” and the newly formed “NSF Industry University Collaborative Research Consortium (I/UCRC) in the area of Energy Efficient Systems.” He is currently advising 12 PhDs and 25 MSc students and has successfully graduated 95 graduate students as well as co-published over 190 papers and 9 issued patents. His recent research has been in cooling data centers so that companies such as Facebook (a member of the consortium at his center) can increase their efficiency and save millions of dollars in energy costs.