2017 Withrow Teaching Excellence Award


March 17, 2017

Eleven receive top honors during 27th Annual Engineering Awards Luncheon 

It was a celebration of teaching, scholarship, and service when members of the Michigan State University College of Engineering convened in the University Club on Thursday, March 16, at the 27th Annual Engineering Awards Luncheon. 

Leo Kempel, dean of the College of Engineering, greeted award winners and about 100 guests from the college during the annual spring ceremony.Eleven from the college received top honors March 16. Awards were presented (l to r), top row: Bradley Marks, Nathan Mellott, Anthony Ingle; middle row: Joshua Nahum, Ramakrishna Mukkamala, Peter Lillehoj, Geoffrey Recktenwald; front row: Kyle Foster, Jennifer Keddle, Gilbert Baladi, and Joyce Chai.

The Withrow Endowed Teacher/Scholar/Service Award Program was established by the Withrow family to recognize faculty of the MSU College of Engineering who have demonstrated excellence in instructional and scholarly activities and rendered distinguished service to the university and the student body. Jack Withrow earned a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering from MSU in 1954 and an MBA in 1971. He retired as executive vice president at Chrysler Corp. in 1988, and then served as president and chief operating officer at Lectron Products Inc., from 1989 to 1995. He received the MSU Distinguished Alumni Award in 1984. Dottie Withrow earned a bachelor’s degree in speech therapy and elementary education from MSU in 1955 and a master’s degree in teaching from Oakland University. She was a special education teacher in West Bloomfield Schools for many years and published a children’s book that promotes responsible pet care and a second book that teaches children about opera.

Withrow Exceptional Service Award – Gilbert Baladi
This award recognizes a faculty member who has demonstrated exceptional institutional, public, and community service. Nominations are submitted by department chairpersons to the dean and associate deans for final selection. 

Gilbert Baladi, a professor in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, holds an exemplary record of service to the CEE department, the College of Engineering, and MSU. His professional service has also enhanced the work of the U.S. Department of Transportation, the World Bank, and many state departments of transportation. He has been engaged in the engineering field for more than 43 years, beginning as a teaching and research assistant at Purdue University while pursuing his master’s and PhD degrees. In his four decades of service, he has become an industry leader in the design, preservation and management of the transportation infrastructures. 

Former student Johnathon Crince, now an intel research specialist with Home Land Security in New York, stated, “Professor Baladi works tirelessly for the student body at MSU: creating online coursework to reduce the cost of materials for students, mentoring undergraduates, managing research assistants, taking on Ph.D. and master’s degree candidates, and working with professional societies.” 

Associate Dean Emeritus Ronald C. Rosenberg added, “The most striking attribute to me is Dr. Baladi’s devotion to the welfare of his students. He has been unflagging in his efforts to create a learning environment that will induce greater learning by employing somewhat novel tools. He has contributed countless hours, going above and beyond what even a dedicated educator might be expected to offer.”

Civil and Environmental Engineering