6 February 2018


The Optical Society Announces Rod Alferness as 2018 Recipient of the Frederic Ives Medal/Jarus W. Quinn Prize

Past OSA President recognized for his contributions and leadership in integrated optics

WASHINGTON — The Optical Society (OSA), the leading global professional association in optics and photonics, today announced that the 2018 Frederic Ives Medal/Jarus W. Quinn Prize will be presented to Rod Alferness, University of California Santa Barbara, USA.  The award was given to Alferness "for basic contributions and leadership in the development of integrated optics, high-speed optical modulation and switching, and configurable WDM networks that have provided significant economic and societal impact.’’

“Rod’s visionary leadership and work in network architecture development has helped bring the Internet to every corner of the world, affecting the day to day lives of billions of people and having a huge economic and societal impact,” said Liz Rogan, CEO, The Optical Society. “He is an active member in the optics and photonics community, and has volunteered his time to serve in leadership positions for research journals, technical conferences and scientific societies, including The Optical Society. He’s an outstanding scientist, mentor and collaborator.”  

“I am humbled and honored to receive the 2018 Frederic Ives Medal/Jarus W. Quinn Prize from OSA, the society and community that has been my professional home for nearly 45 years. My thanks to the OSA Board of Directors, the Awards and Selection Committees, those who supported my nomination and my many collaborators,” said Alferness, currently the Dean of the College of Engineering at the University of California, Santa Barbara, USA. He is a member of the National Academy of Engineering and a Fellow of OSA and the IEEE Photonics Society. He served as OSA president in 2008 and as a member of the OSA Board of Directors from 2001 to 2003. His work and research has earned him numerous awards throughout his career, including the OSA Robert E. Hopkins Leadership Award in 2010, the IEEE Millennium Award and the IEEE Photonics Award.

Alferness is world-renowned for his work on integrated-optic devices and optical switching technology and architecture. His research has been central to the development of global fiber optic communications networks. As Chief Scientist at Bell Labs, he was responsible for strategic directions, technical excellence, and global partnerships. In a prior role, as Senior Vice President for Research he had overall responsibility for the company's global research laboratories, and as Chief Technical Officer for Bell Labs' parent company, Lucent Technologies, Alferness was responsible for transferring the optical technology he and co-workers had invented to the business units.

This year marks the 90th anniversary of the the Ives Medal/Quinn Prize, which recognizes overall distinction in optics and is the highest award of the Society. The Ives Medal was originally endowed in 1928 by Herbert E. Ives, a distinguished charter member and OSA President from 1924 and 1925, to honor his father who was noted as the inventor of modern photoengraving and for his pioneering contributions to color photography, three-color process printing, and other branches of applied optics. The prize is funded by the Jarus W. Quinn Ives Medal Endowment raised by members at the time of Quinn's retirement in recognition of his 25 years of service as OSA's first Executive Director. Alferness will be recognized at the 2018 FiO+LS meeting in Washington, D.C. in September 2018.  
About The Optical Society
Founded in 1916, The Optical Society (OSA) is the leading professional organization for scientists, engineers, students and business leaders who fuel discoveries, shape real-life applications and accelerate achievements in the science of light. Through world-renowned publications, meetings and membership initiatives, OSA provides quality research, inspired interactions and dedicated resources for its extensive global network of optics and photonics experts. For more information, visit osa.org.

About FiO + LS
Frontiers in Optics is The Optical Society’s (OSA) Annual Meeting and held together with Laser Science, a meeting sponsored by the American Physical Society’s Division of Laser Science (DLS). The two meetings unite the OSA and APS communities for five days of quality, cutting-edge presentations, in-demand invited speakers and a variety of special events spanning a broad range of topics in optics and photonics—the science of light—across the disciplines of physics, biology and chemistry. The exhibit floor will feature leading optics companies, technology products and programs. More information at: FrontiersinOptics.org

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