Madhuri and Jagdish N. Sheth International Alumni Award for Exceptional Achievement - Winners



Byung-Ho Chung
College of Liberal Arts and Sciences

Dr. Byung-Ho Chung, a native of South Korea, is the founding director of the Institute for Globalization and Multicultural Studies at Hanyang University. He earned an M.A. and Ph.D. in anthropology from Illinois in 1983 and 1992, respectively.

Dr. Chung was honored for his work on social activism and education reform extending throughout East Asia. The founder or co-founder of six civil society social justice organizations, he has focused particularly on the relationship between North and South Korea, promoting multiculturalism and peace and establishing organizations to care for refugees, many of them children. His leadership at Hanyang University and his anthropological research have inspired students and community leaders in efforts for social reform.



MuKeun Lee
College of Education

Dr. MuKeun Lee earned a PhD in vocational technical education from Illinois in 1977. Dr. Lee, a native of South Korea, was honored for his contributions to vocational-technical education and human resource development as well as his work in government commissions that have helped shape economic and labor policies in South Korea.

He is one of the founders of the first vocational doctoral program in Korea in the Department of Agricultural and Vocational Education at Seoul National University. He was the president of Kyungil University and Dongmyung University and has been made a fellow of the Korean Academy of Science and Technology. Dr. Lee received the Blue Stripes Medal in the Order of Service Merit, which is the highest honor presented by the South Korean President to educators. Dr. Lee was the first president of the Korea Research Institute for Vocational Education and Training (KRIVET).



S. Ismat Shah
College of Engineering

Dr. S. Ismat Shah earned his Ph.D. in materials science and engineering at Illinois in 1986. Dr. Shah, a native of Pakistan, holds a joint appointment as professor in the Department of Materials Science and Engineering and the Department of Physics and Astronomy at the University of Delaware.

He was honored for his humanitarian efforts in helping to raise funds and resources for Pakistani and Afghan refugees displaced by natural disaster and war; his promotion of higher education in Pakistan by building schools, providing equipment, delivering lectures and workshops; and advancing the use of alternative energy sources in developing nations from Eastern Europe to South Asia. The award also honored his long-standing commitment to promoting dialogue and fostering cross-cultural understanding between the Muslim community and other religious and social groups in Delaware, particularly after 9/11.


Sri Mulyani Indrawati
Liberal Arts and Sciences

Dr. Sri Mulyani Indrawati received her PhD in Economics from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in 1992. A native of Indonesia, Dr. Indrawati was named a managing director of the World Bank Group in June 2010.

Before taking the position, she was appointed Minister of Finance of Indonesia by President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, and she held that position from 2005 to 2010. During that time she guided the economic policy for one of the largest countries in Southeast Asia, successfully navigating the global economic crisis, implementing key reforms, fighting corruption and earning the respect of her peers across the world. She is credited with increasing direct investments in Indonesia, and helping to steer the country through the challenging but successful transition from autocracy to democracy.

Dr. Indrawati earned her undergraduate degree from Universitas Indonesia in 1986.


Bir Bahadur Singh
Agricultural, Consumer, and Environmental Sciences

Bir Bahadur Singh graduated from the University of Illinois with his Masters and PhD degrees in plant breeding and genetics in 1965 and 1967, respectively. He is currently a visiting professor in the Department of Soil and Crop Sciences, Texas A&M University, where he is conducting research on cowpea breeding and teaching world agriculture and international plant breeding.

Dr. Singh’s contributions in cowpea and soybean genetics and breeding methods have led to the development of sustainable cropping systems that have enhanced food security, family nutrition and income generation for millions of farmers and their families in India and Nigeria. Dr. Singh has made major contributions through breeding of early maturity cowpea varieties by improving resistance to major diseases, insect-pests, nematodes, and tolerance to drought and heat. Dr. Singh’s efforts and successes led to an increase of cowpea production from approximately 1.2 million tons in 1981 to over 6.3 million tons in 2009 globally.



rafael correa

Rafael Correa
Liberal Arts and Sciences

President Rafael Correa Delgado received a Master’s degree in 1999 and a PhD in 2001 in Economics at the University of Illinois.  After returning to Ecuador, Correa continued his academic career as a Director of the Department of Economics at San Francisco de Quito University. In 2005, Correa became Minister of Economy. During his time as Minister, Correa gained much popularity after introducing critical reforms to Ecuador’s method of managing profits. The newly introduced laws ensured that national funds are being allocated toward domestic development and social programs. Correa was elected President in November 2006 and took office in February 2007.  As President, Correa has responded to the needs of the rural population in his country, while introducing several social programs to support education, health care, and economic development. 



bo zhang

Bo Zhang
Agricultural, Consumer & Environmental Sciences

A native of Gansu Province, China, Bo Zhang received an M.S. and Ph.D. in Agricultural Engineering at Illinois in 1992 and 1999, respectively. In pursuit of his lifelong passion to improve the economic welfare of his fellow citizens in China, Bo Zhang has founded and/or managed seven national and three international companies that have introduced new technologies, created new jobs and promoted economic development. He was president of one of the first consulting firms to introduce international business practices to China and founded a company that designed and developed advanced hydraulic rescue tools specifically for the Chinese market, now the leading tools used in earthquake disaster relief. He is Executive Councilman of China Overseas Chinese Entrepreneurs, a national non-profit community organization composed of compatriots who invest in the enterprise of China and well-known overseas Chinese organziations, and he is Chairman and CEO of American Electronic Products, Inc., headquartered in Oak Park, Illinois, and Chairman of the Ningbo Bosheng Precision Machinery Co., Ltd, and Bestech Abrasives Co., Ltd.



Kandeh K. Yumkella
Agricultural, Consumer & Environmental Sciences

Dr. Kandeh K. Yumkella received his Phd from Illinois in 1991 in Agricultural Economics. He is the Director-General of the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO), a specialized agency of the United Nations whose mandate is to promote sustainable industrial development in the developing countries and economies in transition. Dr. Yumkella is a former Minister of Trade, Industry and State Enterprises of the Republic of Sierra Leone. With over 20 years’ experience in international development, he has provided leadership for various initiatives and managed high-level consultations and negotiations with Member States on global development issues. He served as Director of the Africa and LDCs Regional Bureau and UNIDO Representative and Director of the first UNIDO Regional Office in Nigeria. Dr Yumkella has authored and co-authored several publications.



Sophie Leung
Liberal Arts and Sciences

Sophie Leung graduated from the University of Illinois in 1969 with a BS in Mathematics and Computer Science and returned to Hong Kong, where she has made significant contributions in business, politics, public service, and philanthropy. Currently, Mrs. Leung acts as Director of Bay Apparel Limited and Director of Golden Emblem Investment Company Ltd. She served (2003-2008) as Hong Kong Special Administrative Region Deputy, 10th National People’s Congress of the People’s Republic of China.

She is a member of key government and non-government organizations and institutes that support and enhance the development of the textile and garment industry. Mrs. Leung is widely recognized for her public service to the development and implementation of the health care system in Hong Kong; she was a founding member of the Hospital Authority until 2002 and served on a number of its constituent committees as well as acting as trustee of the Hospital Authority Charitable Foundation.



Barry McGaw

Barry McGaw completed his Ph.D. in Educational Psychology and Measurement at the University of Illinois. He has dedicated his professional life to improving the quality of education for students both in his native Australia and around the world. From 1998 to 2005, he served at the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), based in Paris, first as Deputy Director for Education in the Directorate for Education, Employment, Labour and Social Affairs and, beginning in 2002, as the first Director for Education in the newly-established Directorate for Education. At OECD, he was highly influential in the design and conduct of the Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) standards, which analyse student educational achievements in participating countries around the world.

Dr. McGaw is a Fellow of the Academy of the Social Sciences in Australia, the Australian Psychological Society and the Australian College of Educators.



Emil Javier
Agricultural, Consumer & Environmental Sciences

Dr. Javier completed his M.S. degree in Agronomy at University of Illinois in 1964 and his Ph.D. in 1969 at Cornell University.

He served for four years as chairman of the Technical Advisory Committee (TAC) of the Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research (CGIAR), after serving from 1993-1999 as the 16th President of the University of the Philippines. Previously, he served in Taiwan from 1989-1993 as director general of the Asian Vegetable Research and Development Center (AVRDC) and as Minister of Science and Director General for the National Science and Technology Authority of the Philippines from 1981-1986.

Dr. Javier was appointed Chancellor of the Los Baños campus of the University of the Philippines in 1979, where he oversaw the creation of five applied research institutes in the College of Agriculture. Earlier, in 1975, he had founded at Los Baños the Institute of Plant Breeding, one of the premier plant breeding institutes in Asia; his tenure as professor there started in 1969, after his return from the U.S.



Ashok S. Ganguly
Agricultural, Consumer & Environmental Sciences

Dr. Ganguly received both his MS and his PhD (1959 and 1961 respectively) from the University of Illinois Department of Food Science and Human Nutrition, College of Agriculture, Consumer and Environmental Sciences.

Dr. Ganguly is currently the Chairman of Firstsource Solutions Ltd (formerly ICICI OneSource Ltd) and ABP Pvt Ltd (Ananda Bazar Patrika Group).  He serves as a non-executive director of Mahindra & Mahindra, Wipro Ltd and Tata AIG Life Insurance Co Ltd., and as Chairman of the Advisory Board of Microsoft Corporation (India) Pvt Ltd. 

Dr. Ganguly has been a Director on the Central Board of the Reserve Bank of India since November 2000.  He is also a current member of the Prime Minister of India’s Council on Trade and Industry, Investment Commission, India-USA CEO Council and National Knowledge Commission.



Atef Muhammad Ebeid

Atef Ebeid received his PhD in business administration from Illinois in 1962. After graduating from Illinois, he returned to Egypt, where he joined the faculty of Cairo University’s department of management and worked as a management consultant to various ministries within the Egyptian government.

In 1973, he formed the International Management Center, a consulting firm that helped restructure failing construction firms. He was president of that company until he entered government service in 1984. He served as state minister for administrative development from 1984-1993, and minister of private enterprises from 1993-1999.

He was appointed prime minister by Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak in 1999, and served in that capacity until 2004. As prime minister, he worked to liberalize the economy, increase economic growth, foster trade links with the European Union and the United States, streamline government and initiate social reforms.



Nobuko Matsubara
Institute of Labor and Industrial Relations

A native of Tokyo, Nobuko Matsubara began her career as a student at the University of Tokyo, where she received a Bachelor's degree in International Relations in 1964. Upon graduation, she entered the civil service in the Ministry of Labor. She received a Fulbright Fellowship a few years lagter and came to the University of Illinois to pursue a Master's Degree in the Institute of Labor and Industrial Relations, which she completed in 1969. She returned to Japan and to the Ministry of Labor where she served in a variety of positions, including Director of the International Affairs Division of the Minister's Secretariat, Director-General of the Women's Bureau, Director-General of the Labor Standards Bureau, and Director-General of the Labor Relations Bureau. In these positions, Ms. Matsubara worked actively to promote equal rights in employment for women, as well as the rights of all employees. Her success led to her appointment in 1997 to the positition of Administrative Vice Minister of Labor where she served until 1998. Ms. Matsubara has continued to champion the rights of the underrepresented in her current position as President of the Japan Association for Employment of Persons with Disabilities.