Missouri University of Science and Technology awarded five honorary professional degrees during spring commencement ceremonies held Friday, May 16, and Saturday, May 17. The degrees recognize the outstanding Missouri S&T graduates for professional achievement.
The following S&T alumni received professional degrees:
Richard Smith of Waterloo, Ill., director of corporate research and development for Ameren, earned bachelor of science and master of science degrees in mechanical engineering from Missouri S&T in 1977 and 1986, respectively. He has more than 36 years of industrial experience, including engineering, manufacturing, management of major projects, electricity generation operations, business planning and advanced technology management. Smith also worked in manufacturing at Texas Instruments. He serves in an advisory role at the University of Missouri System campuses and at Washington University in St. Louis. A licensed professional engineer in Missouri and Illinois, Smith is a Fellow of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers and is a certified Project Management Professional.
R. Tim Bradley of Austin, Texas, retired president of Kinder Morgan CO2 Co., earned a bachelor of science degree in petroleum engineering from Missouri S&T in 1977. After graduation, Bradley began work with Shell Oil Co. in Midland, Texas. In 1984, he was named manager of petroleum engineering-enhanced oil recovery (EOR) for Shell’s EOR operations in Mississippi. In 1989, he was named president of Shell CO2 Co., a joint venture between Shell and Kinder Morgan, responsible for the CO2 source and transportation business. When Shell sold its share of the company in 2000, Bradley was named president of Kinder Morgan CO2 Co. He retired in 2013 and is a member of the Missouri S&T Academy of Mines and Metallurgy.
Ralph J. Hecht of North Palm Beach, Fla., a retired Pratt & Whitney executive, earned a bachelor of science degree in metallurgical engineering from Missouri S&T in 1964. After earning a master’s degree in metallurgy from Iowa State University in 1966, he joined Pratt & Whitney’s Florida Research and Development Center. His research led to significant advances in high-temperature coatings technology for gas turbine engines. In 1986, he was elected a Fellow of ASM. In 1990, he led with GE the structuring and management of a NASA program to develop the enabling materials for the High Speed Civil Transport. Hecht held various executive management positions prior to his 1998 retirement. He received 14 patents and had more than 30 publications.
Brian Alan Quandt of Duarte, Calif., an entertainment engineering executive, is founder of Production Data Services. A former computer science major at Missouri S&T, Quandt has served as a stereoscopic business and technology consultant on more than 100 major motion pictures, including “Underworld,” “Zorro” and “Casino Royale.” He has worked with major Hollywood studios like Sony, Disney and Lionsgate. Before going to Hollywood, Quandt was a digital communications and video systems expert and a specialist in data encryption and security. From 1993 to 1998, he ran a joint venture between Pulitzer Broadcast and HEURIS Logic. In 2002, Quandt pioneered the first HD digital dailies system, Rush Play, which has been used on the set of many A-list motion pictures.
Kevin M. Ijames of Sullivan, Mo., president and CEO of ACE Manufacturing Co., earned a bachelor of science degree in metallurgical engineering from Missouri S&T in 1983. Ijames started work at ACE Manufacturing as a shipping clerk when he was in high school. During college, he worked as a machine operator and quality assurance clerk. After graduating, he returned to ACE Manufacturing and worked his way up to president and CEO. Ijames hosts departmental seminars at Missouri S&T and employs several S&T graduates. He gives annual tours of his facility to S&T students and provides projects for the department’s senior capstone course. In 2011, Ijames was awarded the materials science and engineering department’s Distinguished Young Alumnus Award.