Mechanical engineering alum gives gift for professorship, celebrates Daniels' arrival

February 11, 2013  

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. - A Purdue University College of Engineering alumnus has given a gift under the Faculty Excellence Challenge Match program.

The program is designed to endow new professorships through private gifts from $750,000 to $1 million that are matched dollar for dollar by the university.

Purdue alumnus Milton B. Hollander is giving $750,000 toward The Betty Ruth and Milton B. Hollander Family Professorship in Mechanical Engineering. 

"The entire Hollander family applauds and congratulates Mitch Daniels as the 12th president of Purdue University," Hollander said. "We are honored that one of the Daniels administration's first announcements is The Betty Ruth and Milton B. Hollander Family Professorship in Mechanical Engineering."

Milton Hollander's wife, Betty Ruth, was founder, chairman and CEO of Omega Engineering Inc. Her many philanthropic contributions to Purdue include the atrium of The Roger B. Gatewood Wing in honor of her husband. She spoke about her desire to fund a professorship before her death in 2011 and continues to be the inspiration for the Hollander family's dedication to philanthropy, Milton Hollander said.

Milton Hollander, who earned a bachelor's degree in mechanical engineering from Purdue, is CEO of River Bend Science and Technology Park, offering research and development centers and high-tech manufacturing facilities and office space powered by the region's most advanced green technology. 

He holds more than 200 patents worldwide. His breakthroughs are in welding, energy storage, food processing, automation, process measurement and control, and other areas of advanced science, technology, industry and defense.

His invention of flywheel-based friction welding sustains drilling rigs miles below the Earth's surface while his advances in infrared temperature measurement operate on probes millions of miles away in space.

The College of Engineering also received an anonymous $1 million gift to help fund a professorship in chemical engineering.

Previously, the college had received two gifts through the Faculty Excellence Challenge Match. The Geoff Crowley family gave $750,000 for a professorship in engineering education, and Gerald and Sarah Skidmore gave $750,000 for a professorship in chemical engineering.

"These generous gifts from our accomplished alumni are especially critical as the college embarks on a bold plan for strategic growth," said Leah Jamieson, the John A. Edwardson Dean of Engineering. "Named and distinguished professorships help us recruit, reward and retain the very best educators and researchers."

Writer: Judith Barra Austin, 765-494-2432,

Source: Leah Jamieson, 765-494-5346,

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