Rottler-LaCroix scholarship for nuclear engineering

Photo of Lee Ann and J. Stephen RottlerLee Ann and J. Stephen Rottler of Albuquerque, N.M., will endow a scholarship for nuclear engineering undergraduates at Texas A&M University.

The couple's gift of $50,000, to be received by the Texas A&M Foundation, honors their parents with the naming of the Jerry and Deanna Rottler and Ernest and Helen LaCroix Scholarship.

"Lee Ann and I are endowing this scholarship to 'give back' to a great university that gave us our start in life and brought us together. We are naming the scholarship after our parents, four very special people who have been hugely influential in shaping our lives, and who have always given us unconditional love and support," said Steve Rottler, chief technology officer and vice president of science and technology at Sandia National Laboratories.

Recipients of the scholarship will be full-time nuclear engineering students with a minimum grade point average of 3.5.

"It is a critical time for attracting the best and brightest students to the nuclear engineering profession. Scholarships endowed by our most successful former students, such as Dr. Rottler, enable us to 'raise the bar' on our graduates as they face an increasingly competitive career environment. We are extremely grateful to Stephen and Lee Ann Rottler," said Dr. Raymond J. Juzaitis, nuclear engineering department head and holder of the Sallie and Don Davis Professorship in Engineering.

The Rottlers have strong ties to Texas A&M, where Steve currently serves on the university's Engineering Advisory Council.

Lee Ann, Class of 1981, was a member of the Women's Chorus and received her bachelor's degree in history. As an undergraduate, Steve was a member of the Singing Cadets and received a bachelor's degree in nuclear engineering in 1980. He then earned master's and doctoral degrees in nuclear engineering in 1982 and 1984, respectively.

After completing his Ph.D., Steve joined a research team that developed radiation-hydrodynamics codes for national security applications at Sandia, a national laboratory with major research and development responsibilities. His earlier positions at Sandia have included chief engineer for nuclear weapons and vice president of weapon engineering and product realization. He previously led the laboratories' Nuclear Weapon System Engineering Center, Electronic Systems Center, Nuclear Weapon Program Integration and Studies Center and Computational Fluid Dynamics Department.

The Texas A&M Foundation is a non-profit organization that encourages major gifts and manages endowments for the sole benefit of Texas A&M University.