The OSA Diversity & Inclusion Advocacy
2019 Recognition Honorees

Acknowledged for outstanding dedication and accomplishments, fostering greater appreciation, advancement and celebration of diversity and inclusivity in optics and photonics.

Jay Mathews
University of Dayton, United States

Dr. Mathews has a strong record of encouraging and fostering diversity in the field of optics and photonics. The committee recognizes his work to foster gender, racial, ethnic minority and socio-economic equality, as well as trying to provide opportunities for students who may be underserved in the optics community.

The committee was particularly impressed with the partnerships Dr. Mathews has created with Morehouse College, USA and Morgan State University, USA (both historically black colleges) and to St. Mary’s University, USA (a Hispanic serving institution). As the faculty advisor of the UD chapters of Society of Physics Students and Sigma Pi Sigma and within is his own research group Dr. Mathews demonstrates a commitment to mentoring women, Latinxs, African Americans and members of the LGBTQ community.

Learn more about Dr. Mathews' work, the Summer Research Program and other University of Dayton programs:

University of Dayton
UD Department of Physics
UD Department of Electro-Optics & Photonics 

National Institute of Standards & Technology
United States

The committee felt the work that NIST had done to realize their inclusivity core value “…to harness the diversity of people and ideas, both inside and outside of NIST…” is having significant results within the agency and is an excellent a model for other agencies, companies and universities.

Motivated by data showing that women and minorities compose decreasing fractions of personnel at higher promotional levels within NIST, a group of scientists and managers from across the agency developed Recommendations to Improve Equity in the Scientific and Engineering Promotions Process at NIST resulting in the creation of the Steering Group on Equity in Career Advancement. This Group evaluates unintended impacts to promotion and award opportunities for minority groups; unconscious or implicit biases within the agency; and disparities that can have a cumulative impact over the course of a career. The Group partnered with HR to build a curriculum of courses on inclusivity, implicit bias, trust, women’s success, and microaggression as well as add accountability for actions relating to inclusivity and equity to the performance plans of all senior leaders.

Read more abou the work of the NIST Steering Group on Equity in Career Advancement.

Selection Committee

Katherine Calabro, Synopsis, Inc., USA

Frank Kuo, Mettler Toledo Autochem Inc., USA

W. Y. Sarah Lau, University of Queensland, Australia

Samuel Serna, MIT, USA

Arlene Smith, Avo Photonics Inc., USA