Lynnette D. Madsen
Lynnette D. Madsen

The recipient of the 2020 Acta Materialia Inc. Hollomon Award for Materials & Society is Dr. Lynnette D. Madsen of the U.S. National Science Foundation (NSF) located in Virginia. Dr. Madsen has served as Program Director at the National NSF for nearly two decades. In addition to selecting the best science to support, Dr. Madsen has elevated this role by guiding the community in terms of research directions, educating students, and reaching the public. She has fostered new partnerships, cross-cutting research, and diversity and innovation resulting in broad engagement. A hallmark of her leadership style is translating discoveries into technologies. Her primary jurisdiction is ceramics, composites, and inorganic glasses. Additional areas of expertise and responsibility include sustainability, clean energy, nanotechnology, manufacturing, diversity, education, and forging new cooperative (international and interagency) efforts. 

No doubt her multidisciplinary, international, and multi sector background lays the foundation for this excellence. Dr. Madsen was awarded degrees in four fields: a B.A.Sc. in Electrical Engineering and a B.A. in Psychology from the University of Waterloo, a M.Eng. in Electronics from Carleton University, and a Ph.D. in Materials Science from McMaster University. Her accomplishments have been recognized with a Professional Achievement Alumna Medal from the Faculty of Engineering at the University of Waterloo (in 2013) and an Alumni Gallery Award from McMaster University (in 2018). Dr. Madsen has worked in Canada, Sweden and the United States and she has experience in industry, academia, and government. From 1999-2002, she held a visiting/adjunct faculty position at Carnegie Mellon University. Previously, she held a faculty position at Linköping University in Sweden where she was promoted to Docent (Associate Professor), and earlier she held post-doctoral positions at both Linköping University and the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. The first decade of her career was spent in industry at Nortel Networks in Canada. 

Throughout her tenure at NSF, Dr. Madsen has maintained an active independent research program. Her research includes epitaxial and pseudomorphic thin films, combinatorial nanomaterials science applied to magnetic recording media, contact formation to silicon carbide, and nanoscale graphite intercalation compounds. Additionally, she has two published books, Materials Research for Manufacturing: An Industrial Perspective of Turning Materials into New Products (Springer) and Successful Women Ceramic and Glass Scientists and Engineers: 100 Inspirational Profiles (Wiley).

Dr. Madsen is a Fellow of American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), The American Ceramic Society (ACerS), the American Vacuum Society (AVS) and the Washington Academy of Sciences (WAS), and is a Senior Member of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE). NSF has recognized her efforts with two Director Awards, more than a dozen Performance Awards and an Incentive Award for Timely Program Management. Additionally, her accomplishments have been recognized by international organizations: the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET), ACerS, ASM International, AVS, the Materials Research Society (MRS), the Minerals, Metals & Materials Society (TMS), the Women in Engineering ProActive Network (WEPAN), and by national and local organizations: the District of Columbia Council of Engineering and Architectural Societies (DCCEAS), the Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers (SHPE), WAS, and Women in Technology (WIT). 

Currently, Dr. Madsen serves on the Advisory Board for the Rosalind Franklin Society, on the Board of Directors for ACerS, and on the Editorial Board for Materials Today. Previously, she served as a panelist for the National Research Council at the National Academies, as a Trustee for AVS, and as Board Secretary for WAS.

The Acta Materialia, Inc. Hollomon Award in Materials and Society was established in memory of Dr. J. Herbert Hollomon and his dedication to promoting positive social consequences of science and technology that have had a major impact on society. The Award consists of a Steuben glass sculpture, an inscribed certificate, and a cash honorarium.

Dr. Madsen was selected as the 2020 awardee by an international panel of judges appointed by the Board of Governors of Acta Materialia, Inc. and will receive this prestigious award in February 2020 during the TMS Annual meeting in San Diego, California.