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Industry Awards & Honors

Industry Awards & Honors

Gain recognition and promotion for outstanding contributions to engineering, business, innovation, leadership, technology and product development.


Members who have served with distinction in the advancement of optics and photonics may be proposed for election to the class of Fellow. The Business Leadership category provides a clearer path to recognize distinction in the business community. Fellow nominees are assessed in the context of their achievements and career path. Nominations are due 15 June, and must be submitted by an Fellow Member. Learn More about Fellow nominations.

2021 Fellows

  • Aleksandra Boskovic, Corning Inc, USA
    For technical leadership in industrial research in optical physics and development of optical fibers, optical materials and products
  • Dr. Arnaud Brignon, Thales Research & Technology, France
    For outstanding contributions to nonlinear wave mixing, adaptive laser beam shaping, and coherent beam combining of fs laser amplifiers
  • Frank Chang, Source Photonics, USA
    For outstanding and sustained contributions to and leadership on advancing physical-layer integrated circuit devices and optical transceivers in transmission and data center applications
  • Timothy Day, DRS Daylight Solutions, USA
    For business leadership and commercializing pioneering products that have catalyzed new areas of research and applications of optics and photonics
  • Amy Eskilson, Inrad Optics, USA
    For outstanding contributions to the photonics industry, as well as a long history of advocacy for the community and support for students
  • Donis Flagello, Nikon Research Corporation of America, USA
    For outstanding achievements and leadership in furthering the understanding and improvement of image formation in optical lithography
  • Jack Jewell, GreenVCSEL, USA
    For pioneering contributions to vertical-cavity surface-emitting laser technology and commercialization
  • Chiman Kwan, Signal Processing, Inc., USA
    For significant and sustained contributions to image processing algorithms with applications to remote sensing and especially Mars Curiosity Rover’s imagers
  • Sujatha Ramanujan, NextCorps, USA
    For outstanding leadership in the formation of optics and photonics industry clusters
  • Haisheng Rong, Intel Corporation, USA
    For pioneering and sustained contributions to the research and development of silicon photonics technology
  • Yakov Soskind, Apple Inc., USA
    For outstanding and sustained technical contributions to the science, technology, and applications of diffractive optics
  • Richard N. Youngworth, Riyo LLC, USA
    For outstanding and sustained contributions to optical engineering, particularly to optics standards development for ANSI and ISO


2020 Fellows

  • David C. Brown, Advanced Photonic Sciences, USA
    For industrial leadership and pioneering research in rare-earth activated lasers, rare-earth doped cryogenic laser technology and the understanding of thermal effects in fiber lasers and cryogenic lasers
  • Yi Cai, ZTE TX, Inc., USA
    For contributions to forward error correction and digital signal processing in optical fiber communications
  • Achyut K. Dutta, Banpil Photonics, Inc., USA
    For distinguished contributions to photodetectors, particularly highly-sensitive infrared (IR) photodetectors and their applications in imaging and communication, and high-performance energy harvesting devices enabled by photon-trapping micro-nanostructures
  • Alexandre Y. Fong, TruTag Technologies Inc, USA
    For outstanding achievements and leadership in a wide range of complex projects in life sciences and instrumentation, technical product development, marketing and sales, and for excellence in leadership in OSA and the Florida Photonics Cluster
  • Ulrike Fuchs, Asphericon GmbH, Germany
    For outstanding and sustainable contributions to research linking the production of aspheres and metrology with questions of optical design and their transfer to free-form optics
  • Di Liang, Hewlett Packard Labs, Hewlett Packard Enterprise, USA
    For seminal contributions to innovative photonic material and device integration for energy efficient optical communication and volume production
  • Claudio Mazzali, Corning Optical Communications, USA
    For business and technical leadership in optical fiber, cable and connectivity product developments
  • Thomas Pfeiffer, Nokia Bell Labs, Germany
    For advancing research and commercialization of optical access technologies and architectures
  • Katharine Schmidtke, Facebook Inc., USA
    For technical innovation in the area of high-bandwidth optical interconnects, particularly in hyperscale data-center applications
  • Jesse E. Simsarian, Nokia Bell Labs, USA
    For contributions to technologies and systems for optical packet networks and software defined optical networks
  • Larry B. Stotts, Stotts Consulting, USA
    For outstanding technical leadership in optical and photonic systems
  • Rachel Won, Nature Photonics, UK
    For outstanding support of optics worldwide through leadership in scientific publishing, and for extensive volunteer work promoting the importance of photonics in society and the role of women in science


2019 Fellows

  • Eugene G. Arthurs, USA
    For outstanding leadership in the optics community, expanding optics activities globally, and advocating optics to government and corporate entities on the world stage.
  • Karsten Buse, Fraunhofer Institute for Physical Measurement Techniques IPM and University of Freiburg, Germany
    For seminal work on the optical properties and device applications of lithium niobate.
  • Richard N. Claytor, Fresnel Technologies Inc, USA
    For entrepreneurial leadership, product innovation, and commercialization of optical products, particularly high-quality Fresnel lenses with wide practical applicability in optical systems such as the passive infrared motion detectors ubiquitous in security and lighting control.
  • Steve Frisken, Cylite and Finisar Australia, Australia
    For seminal contributions as a researcher, inventor and entrepreneur.
  • Ronald Holzwarth, Menlo Systems GmbH, Germany
    For having a pivotal role in the realisation and commercialisation of optical frequency combs.
  • Richard A. Hutchin, Optical Physics Company, USA
    For pioneering work in optical instrumentation for astronomical and laser applications, including adaptive optics, interferometry, and phased-array imaging.
  • Wenhua Lin, Intel Corporation, USA
    For pioneering contributions to silicon photonics, planar lightwave/photonic integrated circuits.
  • Anne Matsuura, Intel Corporation, USA
    For exceptional contributions to the support and advancement of optical sciences and technologies, through the development of national and international activities of government, industry, and academic institutions.
  • Kannan Raj, Oracle, USA
    For sustained technical leadership in research, development, and commercial deployment of optical interconnect technologies with multiple platforms enabling growth of data centers and cloud infrastructure-based service delivery.
  • Sean Wang, B&W TEK Inc, USA
    For entrepreneurial leadership and innovation in a broad spectrum of optics, including photo-bio-modulation (PBM), analytical instrument, spectroscopic sensors, medical lasers as well as actively serving the optics community, university and STEM education.


2018 Fellows

  • George Bayz, Synopsys, Inc, USA
    For impactful leadership to the OSA and the optics industry, both through his exemplary volunteer service as Treasurer and ongoing leadership of a leading optical design tools company, ORA/Synopsys.
  • Nicolas Fontaine, Nokia Corporation, USA
    For groundbreaking contributions to spatial multiplexing components and systems, ultra-high speed receivers using digital optical bandwidth interleaving and wavelength selective switches.
  • Donald Golini, SANICA Ventures, USA
    For outstanding contributions to the optics industry through development of deterministic finishing systems based on Magneto-Rheological Finishing (MRF) and sub-aperture stitching interferometry platforms for large, fast and aspheric surfaces.
  • Joseph Gortych, Opticus IP Law PLLC, USA
    For excellence in advancing OSA members’ understanding of patenting and intellectual property, especially through two decades of publications in Optics & Photonics News.
  • Anatoly Grudinin, Kaithree Photonics, UK
    For highly successful and dynamic entrepreneurship in forming and developing the company Fianium, a leading supplier of ultrafast fibre lasers and supercontinuum sources, and outstanding contributions to fibre laser research.
  • Nicusor Iftimia, Physical Sciences Inc., USA
    For original contributions in biomedical optics, especially pioneering the use of optical coherence tomography for interstitial tissue imaging and biopsy guidance, as well as for outstanding service to the biomedical optics community.
  • Mike Mandina, Optimax Systems Inc, USA
    For business leadership within the greater Rochester optics community, the U.S. and global optics industry, and technical leadership in the development of an innovative high speed polishing technique called VIBE.
  • Alan B. Petersen, Spectra-Physics, MKS Instruments, Inc., USA
    For significant and innovative contributions to the design of commercial scientific and industrial UV laser systems and for long term service to the optics community.
  • Takashi Saida, Nippon Telegraph & Telephone Corporation, Japan
    For seminal contribution to advances in waveguide-type polarization devices for coherent optical networks
  • Paul Westbrook, OFS Laboratories, USA
    For outstanding innovation, technical and program leadership in photonic devices, particularly development and application of fiber Bragg grating technology for communications and sensing.
  • Xuezhe Zheng, Wave2Wave, USA
    For significant and sustained contributions to the research and development of optical switches and wdm silicon photonic interconnects.


2017 Fellows

  • Raymond G. Beausoleil, Hewlett Packard Labs, USA
    For seminal contributions to basic and applied research in photonics and optics with applications to information technology.
  • Walter F. Buell, The Aerospace Corporation, USA
    For technical leadership in the development, application and exploitation of advanced laser radar technology and in building a broad based community of researchers, developers and users of active EO systems.
  • Adrian Carter, Nufern, Australia
    For pioneering contributions to specialty optical fiber design, fabrication, and commercialization.
  • Aref Chowdhury, Nokia Corporation, USA
    For pioneering contributions to novel nonlinear optical devices such as two-dimensional nonlinear photonic crystals, optical phase conjugation, nonlinear phenomena in negative refractive index metamaterials, and gallium nitride pyramids for high efficiency white LED lighting.
  • Peter de Groot, Zygo Corporation, USA
    For influential and groundbreaking work in the field of high-precision optical metrology.
  • John J. Degnan, Sigma Space Corp, USA
    For leadership in the advancement of laser technology and its applications in satellite and precision interplanetary distance ranging, 3D imaging and atmospheric lidar, free space optical communication and medical instrumentation.
  • Po Dong, Nokia Bell Labs, USA
    For seminal contributions to the advances in silicon photonics devices and integrated circuits for high capacity WDM networks.
  • Jeff Hecht, Hecht Associates, USA
    For informing and educating professionals as well as the general public in the advances in optics and lasers.
  • Richard B. Holmes, Boeing Company, USA
    For contributions in the area of atmospheric and adaptive optics, imaging and remote sensing, and laser beam propagation through the atmosphere.
  • Hong Liu, Google,USA
    For significant contribution and leadership in datacenter optics and networking.
  • Rüdiger Paschotta, RP Photonics Consulting GmbH, Germany
    For the creation of an online encyclopedia on optics and photonics and for important contributions to the understanding and optimization of ultrafast lasers.
  • David E. Spence, Spectra-Physics, USA
    For invention and demonstration of the self-modelocked Ti:sapphire laser and for significant and innovative contributions to the design of commercial scientific and industrial laser systems.
  • Kathleen Tse, AT&T Corp, USA
    For technical excellence and sustained leadership in the development of flexible, seamless optical network architectures and for exemplary service to the optics community through leadership of the Optical Fiber Communication Conference.


2016 Fellows

  • Nobuyuki Hashimoto, Citizen Holdings Co., LTS, Japan
    For development of liquid crystal optical devices for use in a wide variety of instruments, Blu-Ray disks and applications in precision measurement and microscopy.
  • Cedric Lam, Google, USA
    For significant and sustained contribution and leadership in optical networking technologies including optical transport, access and datacenter networks.
  • David Stork, Rambus Inc, USA
    For pioneering contributions to the theory and practice of computational imaging, computer vision and pattern recognition, including their application to the study of art.
  • Masahito Tomizawa, Nippon Telegraph & Telephone Corp, Japan
    For technical excellence and leadership in developing OTN standards and 100G coherent DSP for the world market.
  • Wenbing Yun, Sigray, Inc.,USA
    For his numerous innovations and his outstanding leadership in the development of X-ray microscopy, and its commercial development.


2015 Fellows

  • Gisele Bennett, Georgia Tech Research Institute, USA
    For technical innovation in the use of optical imaging and for research leadership.
  • Robert P. Breault, Breault Research Organization Inc., USA
    For pioneering leadership in the formation of global optics industry clusters.
  • Frank J. Effenberger, Huawei Technologies, USA
    For outstanding and sustained contributions to the research and development of broadband optical access networks, particularly passive optical networks, and the standardization of optical access technologies.
  • Jason Matthew Eichenholz, Open Photonics, USA
    For achievements and leadership across a broad spectrum of projects in supporting open innovation, entrepreneurship, commercialization, technology and strategic developments for multiple corporations, and for excellence in leadership at OSA.
  • Jeffrey H. Hunt, The Boeing Company, USA
    For novel applications of nonlinear optical science to interfacial industrial diagnostics, development of advanced and frequency-agile laser sources, manufacturing metrology, trans-spectral detection including imaging and communications, and information assurance technologies.
  • Inuk Kang, LGS Innovations, LLC, USA
    For ultrafast measurements of optical processes, properties and pulses, and demonstrations of integrated optical devices for optical communication systems with advanced modulation formats.
  • Keisuke Kojima, Mitsubishi Electric Research Laboratories, USA
    For outstanding contributions in semiconductor lasers, in particular high-speed uncooled Fabry-Perot and distributed-feedback (DFB) lasers for optical access and data communications, and narrow-linewidth DFB lasers for coherent optical communications.
  • William J. Munro, NTT Basic Research Labs, Japan
    For achievements in optics and photonics, as a key bridge between academia and industry in the optical quantum information field.
  • Roland Ryf, Bell Labs, Alcatel-Lucent, USA
    For multiple contributions to optical switching and multiplexing technology including MEMS and liquid-crystal-on-silicon subsystems and spatially multiplexed transmission systems.
  • Chongjin Xie, Alibaba Group, USA
    For discoveries and inventions in the area of polarization and nonlinear effects in fibers.
  • Xiaotian Steve Yao, General Photonics Corporation, USA
    For the invention, development and commercialization of the opto-electronic oscillator and optical polarization devices and instruments.
  •  Xiang Zhou, Google Inc., USA
    For outstanding contributions to high-spectral-efficiency coherent optical transmission systems and technologies.

Awards & Medals

We recognize and celebrate the field's engineering, business, technical, research, education, leadership and service accomplishments. Our awards program spans all areas of optics and photonics, as well as contributions made to the community. The awards below specifically recognize the achievements of engineers, business leaders, inventors, innovators and entrepreneurs. View a full list of awards and medals.

  • Paul F. Forman Team Engineering Excellence Award - recognizes team technical achievements in optical engineering. Deadline is 10 April.
  • Joseph Fraunhofer Award/Robert M. Burley Prize - recognizes research accomplishments in the field of optical engineering. Deadline is 1 October.
  • Robert E. Hopkins Leadership Award - recognizes an individual or group who has had a significant impact on the global optics and photonics community or has had a significant impact on society as a whole stemming from non-research oriented activities. Deadline is 1 October.
  • Edwin H. Land Medal - recognizes pioneering work empowered by scientific research to create inventions, technologies, and products (co-sponsored with the Society for Imaging Science and Technology). Deadline is 1 October.
  • David Richardson Medal - recognizes contributions to optical engineering, primarily in the commercial and industrial sector. Deadline is 1 October.
  • Kevin P. Thompson Optical Design Innovator Award - recognizes significant contributions, at an early career stage, to lens design, optical engineering, or metrology by an individual as evidenced by one or more of the following: innovative and rigorous research; optical system design with a foundation in aberration theory; development of advanced metrology capabilities; product development; patents; or publications. Deadline is 1 October.
  • John Tyndall Award - recognizes contributions to fiber optic technology (co-sponsored with the IEEE/Photonics Society). Deadline is 10 August. All submissions should be sent to the IEEE Photonics Society

Nominate a colleague today!


Promotion of Fellows & Award Recipients Includes:

  • Special recognition in OSA’s magazine, Optics and Photonics News
  • A dedicated press release
  • Outreach on OSA social media channels
  • Recognition during OSA meetings & conferences
  • Opportunity to participate in award ceremonies at OSA meetings and conferences
  • Recognition in trade magazines, journals and/or conference publications