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Release: June 7, 2000

UI inducts three new members into Distinguished Engineering Alumni Academy

IOWA CITY, Iowa -- The University of Iowa College of Engineering will induct three new members into its Distinguished Engineering Alumni Academy this summer for contributions toward personal engineering achievement, leadership, and service to the profession and society.

Allen Henry and James R. Lightner will be inducted into the academy Saturday, June 10 during the college's spring reunion dinner at the Clarion Hotel and Convention Center, Coralville. Helmut E. Kobus will be inducted during the July 23-27 Fourth International Conference on Hydroinformatics, sponsored by the Iowa Institute for Hydraulic Research and held at the Collins Plaza Hotel and Convention Center, Cedar Rapids.

Henry, who received his master's degree and doctorate in mechanics and hydraulics from the University of Iowa in 1968 and 1971, respectively, is retired vice president-general manager of JDS Uniphase Broadband Products, a wholly owned subsidiary of JDS Uniphase Corporation and fiber optics manufacturer. From 1996 to 1999 Henry was chairman, CEO, and president of privately held Broadband Communications Products prior to its acquisition by Uniphase Corporation. In 1996 he retired from Harris Corporation, Melbourne, Fla. after 23 years of service. His last position at Harris Corporation was president of Electronic Systems Sector, an organization of 7,000 people and annual revenue of $1 billion, with responsibility for defense, energy management, air traffic control, weather processing, criminal justice, satellite and terrestrial communications, and aerospace markets. He has served as a member of the University of Iowa Engineering Building Campaign Steering Committee. In addition, he is a major contributor and fundraiser for the Women's Center Capital Campaign in Melbourne, Fla., which aids more than 10,000 women and children annually. Also, he has served as a director, since1994, and as board chairman, since1999, of the 454-bed Holmes Regional Medical Center, Melbourne, Fla.

Kobus, who received his master's degree and doctorate in mechanics and hydraulics from the University of Iowa in 1963 and 1965, respectively, is an internationally respected researcher and educator in the hydrosciences and engineering. He is director of the Institut für Wasserbau in Germany and past president of the International Association of Hydraulic Engineering and Research (IAHR). He is the author of Hydraulic Model Testing, a standard text at many universities. Shortly before becoming the director of Stuttgart, Germany's Institute for Hydraulics in 1977, he formed a research group that has since been internationally recognized for its non-traditional approaches to environmental problems. He recently led an international agreement to exchange academic staff and students between the University of Iowa Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, and the Water Resources Engineering and Management Program Institutes at Stuttgart. Since 1977 he has been professor at the University of Stuttgart, director of the Institute for Hydraulics, chair for Technical Hydromechanics and Hydraulic Engineering, and since 1988 chair for Hydraulics and Groundwater.

Lightner, who received his bachelor's degree in mechanical engineering from the University of Iowa in 1944, is retired chairman and president of Electrospace Systems, Inc., Richardson, Texas. In 1970 he, along with four other engineers, started Electrospace Systems at a dining room table with a calculator and a three-year financial plan. Under his guidance as chairman, president, and treasurer, the company has become one of eastern Texas' largest employers. In 1987 the designer and manufacturer of antennas and airborne communication systems was sold to the Chrysler Corporation. In 1953 he joined Collins Radio Company, where he managed and designed major programs such as antenna systems for Minuteman missiles and the Atlas-Titan rocket. At Collins Radio he also served as division director of fabrication, responsible for total operations in building and fabricating parts for the Dallas region, and as division director of production, involved in the assembly, test, and delivery of communications and antenna equipment for weather radar and broadcast facilities. Lightner has served as a member of several business boards and advisory councils and has contributed considerably to community service in Iowa, Ohio, Texas, and Washington, D.C. He is a member of the University of Iowa Presidents Club and the Alumni Association Honors Circle.

The 2000 induction ceremonies, hosted by Theta Tau, National Professional Engineering Fraternity, bring the Academy's membership to 31.