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Faculty and staff of the J. Mike Walker '66 Department of Mechanical Engineering gathered for the spring awards and recognition banquet.
Faculty and staff of the J. Mike Walker '66 Department of Mechanical Engineering gathered to honor 10 of the department's members | Image: Steve Kuhlmann/Texas A&M Engineering Communications

Ten members of the J. Mike Walker ’66 Department of Mechanical Engineering were honored at the department’s 2019 Awards and Recognition Banquet.

The recipients included four staff members, five faculty and one graduate student.

Jay Still and Holly Ridings were both inducted into the mechanical engineering department Academy of Distinguished Graduates.
Jay Still and Holly Ridings, the latest inductees into the department's Academy of Distinguished Graduates | Image: Steve Kuhlmann/Texas A&M Engineering Communications

In addition to the award recipients, the department also celebrated the induction of two former students to its Academy of Distinguished Graduates. Holly Ridings ’96 and Jay Still ’84 were both in attendance to accept the honor.

Ridings is the first woman to serve as chief flight director at NASA, directing human spaceflight missions from the Mission Control Center at Johnson Space Center in Houston, and Still serves as president, CEO and chairman of the board at Guidon Energy. 

The awards and their recipients are as follows:

James J. Cain ’51 Staff Excellence Award

Sandra Havens, Program Specialist II

Adrienne Krenek, Administrative Associate IV

J. Mike Walker ’66 Staff Excellence Award

Nicole Latham, Administrative Coordinator I

Jennifer Bloom, Academic Advisor III

James J. Cain ’51 Graduate Student Teaching Award

Namita Anil Kumar, Ph.D. Student

J. Mike Walker ’66 Faculty Graduate Teaching Award

Dr. Jonathan Felts, Assistant Professor

Peggy L. & Charles Brittan ’65 Outstanding Undergraduate Teaching Award

Dr. Matt Pharr, Assistant Professor

American Society of Mechanical Engineers Best Teacher Award

Heather Lewis, Lecturer

Mechanical Engineering Industry Advisory Council Faculty Contributions Award

Dr. Srikanth Saripalli, Associate Professor and Gulf Oil/Thomas A. Dietz Career Development Professor II

Mechanical Engineering Industry Advisory Council Faculty Mentoring Award

Dr. M. Cynthia Hipwell, TEES Eminent Professor & National Academy of Engineering Member