Professors from UT Austin and Carnegie Mellon Honored for Excellence in Semiconductor Technology and Design Research

Wednesday, Sep 16, 2015, 3:39pm

by Semiconductor Industry Association

WASHINGTON—Sept. 16, 2015—The Semiconductor Industry Association (SIA), in consultation with Semiconductor Research Corporation (SRC), today presented its University Research Award to professors from the University of Texas at Austin (UT Austin) and Carnegie Mellon University (CMU) in recognition of their outstanding contributions to semiconductor research.

Dr. Grant Willson, professor of chemistry and chemical engineering and the Rashid Engineering Regents Chair at UT Austin, received the honor for excellence in technology research, while Dr. Larry Pileggi, Tanoto Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering at CMU, was recognized for excellence in design research.

“Research is the lifeblood of innovation and the U.S. semiconductor industry,” said John Neuffer, president and CEO of the Semiconductor Industry Association, which represents U.S. leadership in semiconductor manufacturing, design and research. “Dr. Willson and Dr. Pileggi have spearheaded pioneering research that has moved our industry forward and helped keep America at the leading edge of innovation. It is with great pleasure that we recognize Dr. Willson and Dr. Pileggi for their tremendous and important accomplishments.”

“SRC’s mission is to drive focused industry research to both advance state-of-the-art technology and continue to create a pipeline of qualified professionals who will serve as next-generation leaders for the industry,” said Ken Hansen, SRC CEO and President. “Dr. Willson and Dr. Pileggi exemplify that spirit of innovation, and we’re pleased to honor them for their achievements.”

Dr. Willson joined the faculties of the Departments of Chemical Engineering and Chemistry at UT Austin in 1993. He received his BS and Ph.D. in Organic Chemistry from the University of California at Berkeley and an MS degree in Organic Chemistry from San Diego State University. He came to UT Austin from his position as an IBM Fellow and Manager of the Polymer Science and Technology area at the IBM Almaden Research Center in San Jose, Calif. He joined IBM after serving on the faculties of California State University, Long Beach and the University of California, San Diego.

Dr. Pileggi joined the faculty at CMU in 1996. His professional background includes more than 30 years of experience in IC design, Electronic Design Automation and university education and research. Dr. Pileggi co-founded Extreme DA Corporation in 2003 and served as its advisor. He also co-founded and served as Chief Technology Officer of Fabbrix, Inc in 2007. He received his Ph.D. in Electrical and Computer Engineering from CMU in 1989 and was also a faculty member at UT Austin before returning to CMU.

The University Research Award was established in 1995 to recognize lifetime research contributions to the U.S. semiconductor industry by university faculty.

About SIA

The Semiconductor Industry Association (SIA) is the voice of the U.S. semiconductor industry, one of America’s top export industries and a key driver of America’s economic strength, national security, and global competitiveness. Semiconductors – microchips that control all modern electronics – enable the systems and products we use to work, communicate, travel, entertain, harness energy, treat illness, and make new scientific discoveries. The semiconductor industry directly employs nearly a quarter of a million people in the U.S. In 2014, U.S. semiconductor company sales totaled $173 billion, and semiconductors make the global trillion dollar electronics industry possible. SIA seeks to strengthen U.S. leadership of semiconductor research, design, and manufacturing by working with Congress, the Administration and other key industry stakeholders to encourage policies and regulations that fuel innovation, propel business and drive international competition. Learn more at

About SRC

Celebrating more than 30 years of collaborative research for the semiconductor industry, SRC defines industry needs, invests in and manages the research that gives its members a competitive advantage in the dynamic global marketplace. Awarded the National Medal of Technology, America’s highest recognition for contributions to technology, SRC expands the industry knowledge base and attracts premier students to help innovate and transfer semiconductor technology to the commercial industry. For more information, visit