institute honors industrial engineers, features apple's ceo tim cook at q&a forum

NORCROSS, Georgia – May 27, 2021 – The honors and awards presented during the virtual Annual Conference & Expo May 22-25 by the Institute of Industrial and Systems Engineers (IISE) celebrated the accomplishments of key figures who have made a lasting mark on the profession.

This year’s winner of IISE’s most prestigious award – the Frank & Lillian Gilbreth Industrial Engineering Award – is IISE Fellow Mark Daskin, who holds the Clyde W. Johnson Collegiate Professorship at the University of Michigan. Daskin is the former chair of the Industrial and Operations Engineering Department at Michigan and previously served on the faculties at Northwestern University and the University of Texas. He is a past editor-in-chief of the IIE (now IISE) Transactions journal, and a recipient of the David F. Baker Distinguished Research Award and the Fred C. Crane Distinguished Service Award from IISE. In 2017, he was elected to the National Academy of Engineering.

The Gilbreth honor is presented to individuals who have distinguished themselves through contributions to mankind in the field of industrial engineering. It is sponsored by The Wm. Michael Barnes ’64 Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering at Texas A&M University.

Tim Cook, CEO of Apple and an Auburn University industrial engineering graduate, received the Captains of Industry Award. This award is given to leaders who successfully used industrial engineering to make significant impacts in the workplace. It honors those in business, industry, and government such as presidents, CEOs, and others who have achieved success. Cook was nominated for the award by IISE Fellow Alice E. Smith, the Joe W. Forehand/Accenture Distinguished Professor of industrial and systems engineering at Auburn University.

The virtual Annual Conference also featured a forum with Cook that included a question/answer session led by IISE Auburn Chapter President Annie Dorsey. The forum featured discussions about what led Cook to choose industrial engineering, his views on leadership and his advice to young industrial engineers, among other things. According to IISE CEO and Fellow Don Greene, Cook is “an inspiration to industrial engineers everywhere, demonstrating the awesome power that our field has to make the world a better place.”

IISE presented the Honorary Member award to Subir Chowdhury. This award recognizes individuals of acknowledged professional eminence. Chowdhury, of the ASI Consulting Group, joins an impressive list of individuals who have received this award since 1960, including Lillian M. Gilbreth, Herbert Hoover and Lee Iacocca.

The prestigious IISE Fellow Award celebrates outstanding leaders for their significant, nationally recognized contributions to the industrial and systems engineering profession and is the highest classification of membership in IISE. In 2021, the distinction of Fellow goes to the following individuals:

  • Oguzhan Alagoz, University of Wisconsin-Madison
  • Dean Athanassiades, Philips Healthcare
  • Salil Desai, North Carolina A&T State University
  • Nabil Nasr, Rochester Institute of Technology
  • Bryan Norman, Texas Tech University
  • Robert Pudlo, FedEx Ground
  • Iris Rivero, Rochester Institute of Technology
  • Hui Yang, The Pennsylvania State University

View the 2021 IISE Honors and Awards ceremony. The monthly ISE magazine covers 2021 IISE award winners. Details on IISE’s awards program are available at

About the Institute of Industrial and Systems Engineers: The Institute of Industrial and Systems Engineers is the world’s largest professional society dedicated solely to the support of the industrial engineering profession and individuals involved with improving quality and productivity. Founded in 1948, IISE is an international, nonprofit association that provides knowledge, training, networking opportunities and recognition to enhance the skills and effectiveness of its members, customers and the profession.

For more information about IISE honors and awards, contact Bonnie Cameron at (770) 349-1102, or, or visit the IISE website at