Tufts School of Engineering awards 2022 Dean’s Medals

The School honored Dr. Asad Madni and Dr. Brett Boghigian with Dean’s Medals in recognition of their contributions to the engineering field.
Headshots of Dr. Asad Madni and Dr. Brett Boghigian
2022 Tufts School of Engineering Dean's Medal honorees Dr. Asad Madni, left, and Dr. Brett Boghigian, right.

Internationally-recognized innovator and engineer Dr. Asad Madni and Dr. Brett Boghigian, Vice President of Biology Platform at FL79, received the Dean’s Medal from the Tufts University School of Engineering, and Dr. Madni was also awarded an honorary doctorate from Tufts University

At Tufts University, the Dean’s Medal is a way to honor and celebrate our alumni, volunteers, and friends. It is the only medal awarded by deans of the individual schools within Tufts. The Dean’s Medal may be awarded to show appreciation for loyal service, to acknowledge major contributions, to honor those whose ideas or discoveries have been important to the university and academic fields, or to recognize any other actions that benefit a school of the university. 

For this reason, former Dean Jianmin Qu began the tradition of bestowing Dean’s Medals to the Commencement speakers chosen to address the engineering graduate and undergraduate ceremonies each May. These individuals are selected to speak to our students because of their accomplishments, service, and leadership in the engineering community, and they represent the wide diversity of our field. By inviting them to speak, we hope they will inspire and encourage our students. Learn more about the School of Engineering Dean's Medal

Past recipients include:

  • Ashok Misra, EG7
  • Richard A. Meserve, A66, J88P  
  • Richard Frenkiel, E63 
  • Paula Soteropoulos, E89, A89
  • Dana Messina, E83
  • Michael Tzannes, EG90
  • Ioannis Miaoulis, E83
  • Jeannie Diefenderfer, E84
  • David Rosowsky, E85

Dean Ad Interim and Karol Family Professor Kyongbum Lee announced the recipients of the 2022 award, Dr. Asad Madni and Dr. Brett Boghigan, E07, EG10. Both delivered inspirational addresses to graduates during Tufts’ 2022 Commencement celebrations. Dr. Madni spoke at the Phase II celebration for graduates from the School of Engineering, while Dr. Boghigian spoke at the School’s graduate programs ceremony.

Dr. Asad Madni - Internationally-recognized innovator and engineer

Dr. Madni is an internationally-recognized expert with more than four decades of experience in the development and commercialization of “intelligent” sensors, systems, and instrumentation. In 2019, IEEE HKN named its top award in his honor. Dr. Madni is the recipient of numerous national and international awards and honors, including the 2022 IEEE Medal of Honor and 2022 Royal Academy of Engineering’s Prince Philip Medal. He holds 5 honorary doctorate degrees and 6 honorary professorships. He is an elected member of the National Academy of Engineering and Fellow of the National Academy of Inventors, Royal Academy of Engineering, and Canadian Academy of Engineering.

Dr. Madni served as President, Chief Operating Officer, and CTO of BEI Technologies Inc. from 1992 until the completion of its $600 million acquisition by Schneider Electric in 2006. He led the development and commercialization of intelligent micro-sensors and systems for numerous industries, including a control system for Hubble Space Telescope's Star Selector System which provided Hubble with unprecedented pointing accuracy and stability; and the revolutionary MEMS GyroChip® technology used worldwide for electronic stability control and rollover protection in passenger vehicles.

Prior to joining BEI, he was with Systron Donner Corporation for 18 years in senior technical and executive positions, eventually as Chairman, President, and CEO. He made seminal and pioneering contributions in the development of radio frequency and microwave systems and instrumentation which significantly enhanced the combat readiness of the U.S. Navy. His innovations also provided the Department of Defense the ability to simulate more threat representative ECM environments for current and future advanced warfare training.

In addition to his pioneering scientific and technical contributions as a world-wide recognized innovator and engineer, Dr. Madni is a long-time champion for underrepresented groups in engineering and the sciences. Throughout his distinguished career, he has shown by example that recognizing and valuing the diversity and contributions of all voices is the best way to inspire innovation and make a positive social impact.

Dr. Madni received his PhD from California Coast University and his MS and BS from UCLA, where he is currently a Distinguished Adjunct Professor and Distinguished Scientist in the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department, and Faculty Fellow in the UCLA Institute of Transportation Studies and Connected Autonomous Electric Vehicle Consortium. He is also an independent consultant and Executive Managing Director and Chief Technical Officer of Crocker Capital, a private venture firm specializing in emerging technologies. For more information about Dr. Madni’s outstanding career and accomplishments, please visit go.tufts.edu/madni.

Dr. Brett Boghigian, E07, EG10 - Vice President, Biology Platform at FL79

Tufts alum Dr. Boghigian is the Vice President, Biology Platform at FL79, a new biotechnology start-up incubating at Flagship Pioneering. Prior to joining FL79, Dr. Boghigian was one of the first employees at Indigo Agriculture, an agricultural technology company based in Charlestown, MA, where he helped build the company from a 5+ person organization to one with more than 1,000 employees that has raised over $1 billion in venture capital financing. Across seven years at Indigo, Dr. Boghigian held multiple leadership roles in research and development functions, as well as in Project Management, Product Management, and Business Development and Licensing.

Dr. Boghigian’s research and work span the fields of biochemical engineering, microbiology, computational biology, and protein science, with applications in pharmaceuticals, nutrition, and agriculture. He earned his BS in chemical engineering with a minor in philosophy and went on to complete his PhD in chemical engineering in three years with 14 publications, all at Tufts School of Engineering. He has remained closely connected to the university and to the School of Engineering over the years, now serving on the advisory board of the Department of Chemical and Biological Engineering. To learn more about Dr. Boghigian, please visit go.tufts.edu/boghigian.