Milton Chang earned his BS engineering degree with highest honors from the University of Illinois and PhD from the California Institute of Technology, and received Distinguished Alumni awards from both universities. He also attended the Harvard Owner/President Management Program (OPM) and was a member of the Young President Organization (YPO). He is a Fellow of OSA, the Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers, and the Laser Institute of America. He is past president of IEEE Photonics Society and the Laser Institute of America, and is a member of the Committee of 100.
Chang is the author of Toward Entrepreneurship and managing director of Incubic Management, USA. Previously, he was president of Newport and New Focus, which he took public. Chang has incubated multiple companies without a single failure, resulting in six IPOs and seven acquisitions.
He is a Trustee of the California Institute of Technology and has recently served on the SEC Advisory Committee on Small and Emerging Companies. He also served on the Visiting Committee on Advanced Technology of the National Institute of Standards and Technology and the authoring committee of the National Academies' Optics and Photonics: Essential Technologies for Our Nation. He writes a monthly business and management column for Laser Focus World and for the quarterly journal of the IEEE Technology and Engineering Management Society.
He served on the Board of Directors, along with a number of voluntary roles including Past Chair of OIDA, organizer of conferences (OFC, CLEO & FiO), the Nominating Council, Publications Council, and Strategic Planning Council. In addition, Chang has generously funded the society and its outreach programs, such as the Incubic Milton Chang Travel Grant and the Milton and Rosalind Chang Pivoting Fellowship, which provides an unrestricted fellowship to talented young optical scientists and engineers as they advance science through non-traditional career paths (e.g. public policy, government, and journalism).