Biography of John W. Sutherland

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Dr. John W. Sutherland is presently the Richard and Elizabeth Henes Chair Professor in the Department of Mechanical Engineering - Engineering Mechanics at Michigan Technological University. He received his B.S. and M.S. degrees in industrial engineering and his Ph.D. in mechanical engineering from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (UIUC). While at UIUC from 1987-1991 he served as a Visiting Assistant Professor and as an Adjunct Assistant Professor; he taught courses in Manufacturing, Quality Engineering, and Statistical Design of Experiments, and collaborated with Professors Richard DeVor and Shiv Kapoor on research related to machining processes. From 1989-91 Sutherland was Vice President of Process Design and Control, Inc. (PDC). While at PDC, he delivered short courses to industry on Quality Control and Design of Experiments, supplied SPC and DOE software to a large number of companies, and provided manufacturing consulting services to several organizations.

Professor Sutherland joined the faculty of the Department of Mechanical Engineering - Engineering Mechanics (ME-EM) at Michigan Technological University in 1991. He served as an Assistant Professor from 1991-95 and Associate Professor from 1995-97; he was promoted to Professor in 1997. As a faculty member at Michigan Tech his teaching and research efforts have focused on Manufacturing, Quality Improvement, and Environmental Issues Related to Design and Manufacturing. Sponsors of his research program have included the National Science Foundation, Ford Motor Company, Caterpillar Inc., General Motors, State of Michigan, Society of Manufacturing Engineers, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Boston Scientific, A. W. Chesterton, Center for Clean Industrial and Treatment Technologies, U.S. Dept. of Education, and the NSF/DARPA Machine Tool-Agile Manufacturing Research Institute (MT-AMRI).

From 1997-2002 Dr. Sutherland served as Associate Chair Director of Graduate Studies for the Dept. of ME-EM. As Director of Graduate Studies, Dr. Sutherland provided Departmental leadership in terms of growing the research activity and developing the graduate program. In 2004, Sutherland was named a Director of the Sustainable Futures Institute (SFI) the SFI is a campus-wide activity that is engaging over 100 faculty in research, education, and outreach efforts related to promoting sustainability.

Nearly 70 graduate students (including 17 PhD students) have been mentored by Prof. Sutherland to the completion of their degrees, and he is currently advising an additional 12 graduate students. He has published over 200 papers in various journals and conference proceedings. He is a co-author of the textbook, Statistical Quality Design and Control: Contemporary Concepts and Methods used by over 100 colleges and universities in the U.S. and abroad.

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Dr. Sutherland has been recognized for his teaching and research with several awards including the UIUC-COE Andersen Consulting Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Advising (1989), Michigan Technological University Distinguished Teaching Award (1992), SME Outstanding Young Manufacturing Engineer Award (1992), Michigan Association of Governing Boards of State Universities Distinguished Faculty Member (1993), National Science Foundation Career Development Award (1995), Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers (1996), SAE Total Life Cycle Conference Best Paper Award (1997), Academy of Teaching Excellence Inductee (1998), SAE Ralph R. Teetor Educational Award (1999), Michigan Technological University Research Award (2000), Finalist for Distinguished Teaching Award (2004), and NAMRC Best Paper Award Finalist (2005).

Professor Sutherland has made a number of contributions to the professional community. As a member of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME) he worked as an associate technical editor for the Journal of Manufacturing Science and Engineering (1991-97), organized symposia for the IMECE (1993, 2000, and 2004), served on the Executive Committee of the Manufacturing Engineering Division including Chairing the Division (2000-01), and represented the Manufacturing Technical Group (2001-04). He was the recipient of the ASME Manufacturing Engineering Division Outstanding Service Award in both 2001 and 2004, and was elected an ASME Fellow in 2006. As a member of the Society of Manufacturing Engineers (SME) Sutherland was elected to Membership in the North American Manufacturing Research Institution of SME (NAMRI/SME) in 1986. He served on the organizing committee for 1988 NAMRC (North American Manufacturing Research Conference) and co-chaired the organizing committee for NAMRC 1995. He held a position on the Board of Directors of NAMRI/SME from 1998-2004, and has been on the NAMRI/SME Scientific Committee since 1991. He was named to the College of SME Fellows in 2005. Sutherland is also active within the International Institution for Production Engineering Research (CIRP), having been elected to membership in Jan. 2003. Sutherland is also a member of the Institute of Industrial Engineers, American Society for Quality, Tau Beta Pi, Phi Kappa Phi, Sigma Xi, Alpha Pi Mu, and Pi Tau Sigma.

(updated December 2006)