College of Engineering to honor four distinguished alumni at annual Night of the Stars event

DETROIT (Oct. 2, 2014) - Wayne State University's College of Engineering will recognize four exemplary alumni during its annual signature event, Night of the Stars, on Saturday, Oct. 25, 2014, at the Henry in Dearborn, Michigan.

Two alumni will be inducted into the College of Engineering Hall of Fame: Kenneth P. Kaufman, BSChE 1981 and David R. McLellan, BSME 1959. Receiving the College of Engineering Industry Achievement Award are: Elizabeth K. Krear, BSME 1988, MSME 1990 and Edwin E. Tatem, PE, MSCE 1990. They were selected among more than 25,000 engineering and computer science alumni who live and work in every state and in 48 countries.

"We have much to celebrate this year, from record enrollment to new, transformational initiatives," said College of Engineering Dean Farshad Fotouhi. "This year's awardees are proof to our current students that they will be in excellent company when they graduate. We are extremely proud of these four alumni."

This year's Night of the Stars event, sponsored by Urban Science in Detroit, will highlight the college's five pillars of student success, as well as pay tribute to the past presidents of the Engineering Alumni Association. Tickets are $125 per person and include a plated dinner and valet parking. RSVP at

Sponsorship opportunities are available. Contact the College of Engineering Development Office at 313-577-4707.

Kenneth P. Kaufman, BSChE 1981 began his professional career at Dow Corning in 1981 as a process design engineer. His involvement in plant design and commissioning included the Barry, Wales expansion and led to various production leadership roles in Midland, Michigan. He held a business controller position prior to becoming product line manager and leading the revitalization of Dow Corning's silane capabilities and market position.

Kaufman later returned to production leadership as Midland site manager where he implemented several key sustainability and growth initiatives. He was named business vice president of core manufacturing in 2008 and elected to his current position as senior vice president of manufacturing, engineering, and global operations in 2010. He is a member of the Hemlock Semi-Conductor Board of Directors and on the board of Dow Corning UK Limited.

In addition to his undergraduate degree in chemical engineering from Wayne State, Kaufman holds an MBA from Central Michigan University. He is president of the Michigan Chemistry Council Board of Directors and a past board member of the Michigan Chamber of Commerce. He is active in the Midland community and has served as chair of the Dow Corning employee United Way campaign in addition to allocation panel and committee roles. He serves as grand knight for the Knights of Columbus council at his parish in Midland. A native of St. Clair Shores, Kaufman has been married to his wife, Ellen, for 34 years. The couple has a daughter, Jennifer, and son, Brian.

David R. McLellan, BSME 1959 joined General Motors Proving Ground Noise and Vibration Lab after graduating from Wayne State. His early assignments included dynamics of cars, trucks and military tanks, and manager of the newly completed Vehicle Dynamics Test Area (Black Lake).

McLellan's career took him to Chevrolet where he led the team that finished the 70 1/2 Camaro development, then to the GM Technical Center to manage John Delorean's project to combine the Camaro and Corvette platforms as a way to save the Corvette (it did not work). In 1973 he was named a Sloan Fellow at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). Shortly after returning to Chevrolet, he was appointed Corvette Chief Engineer and would be indelibly linked with the Corvette for the next 17 years, developing models with advanced electronics and the ultra high performance ZR-1.

In what turned out to be his last development of the Corvette, McLellan challenged an R&D team to design a next generation Corvette capable of ZR-1 performance, but at standard Corvette prices. As a result, his team adopted the backbone architecture that would be the hallmark of the C5 and all subsequent Corvettes. McLellan retired from General Motors in the fall of 1992. His 2002 book, Corvette from the Inside, chronicles the history and shares inside details of this iconic vehicle.

In retirement, McLellan has worked with Porsche Engineering Services, developed an electronically reconfigurable, steer-by-wire car for NHTSA, commercially based military trucks for TACOM, consulted on the Lockheed Martin JLTV, and been the expert in a number of automotive injury and patent legal cases. He is an SAE Fellow and a recipient of the SAE Edward N. Cole Award for Automotive Engineering Innovation.

McLellan and Glenda, his wife of 49 years, have two adult children, David and Philip, and three grandchildren.

Elizabeth Kargilis Krear, BSME 1988, MSME 1990 is the chief engineer of the Ram 1500, named Motor Trend's Truck of the Year for the past two years and currently the top ranked truck by Consumer Reports Road Test Score. In this position, Krear oversees all budgets, planning, engineering, development, quality and launch management of the Ram 1500. Prior to this position, she was the Ram vehicle line quality executive, the highest-level quality advocate for Ram products.

Krear is passionate about cars and trucks and has more than 25 years of experience in the automotive industry. She started her career as an intern at Eaton Corporation and General Motors while a student at Wayne State. Upon graduation, she joined Chrysler as part of the Chrysler Institute of Engineering (CIE) Program. She held functionally diverse positions with increasing responsibility spanning the vehicle product development cycle from concept through launch. She has also worked internationally, residing in Europe to prepare for and launch the European version of the Jeep Grand Cherokee.

Krear sits on the Chrysler Women's Forum Board of Directors, leads the Professional Development Committee, and is active in the Chrysler Mentoring Program. In addition to her degrees from WSU, she holds an MBA from Michigan State University. She resides in Bloomfield Hills with her husband of 23 years, Tad, daughter Niki and son Alex.

Edwin E. Tatem, PE, MSCE 1990 is chairman and senior area manager of Parsons Brinckerhoff Michigan, located in Detroit, and a vice president for Parsons Brinckerhoff, Inc.'s Americas business arm. Parsons Brinckerhoff has a more than 125-year history and has designed the New York City Subway and other notable transit systems across the globe.

Tatem oversees the total operations of Parsons Brinckerhoff in the state of Michigan and is responsible for developing design concepts, supervising plan production, office team building, client relations, budgeting, schedules, forecasting, performance evaluations, and resource management. He served as the project manager for the major reconstruction of the I-75 Ambassador Bridge Gateway in Detroit, used as a main shipping route between Ontario, Canada and the Midwest United States. Prior to joining Parsons Brinckerhoff, Tatem held leadership roles at the Road Commission of Macomb County and the Michigan Department of Transportation.

An expert in transportation engineering, Tatem has served in several senior management positions for public agencies throughout Southeast Michigan, including the Governor's Transition Team for Transportation, the Governor's Construction Code Commission, the Governor's Traffic Safety Advisory Commission, and the County Road Association of Michigan. Additionally, he is on the board of the Intelligent Transportation Society of Michigan (ITS Michigan), serving as president in 2011-2012. In 2013, he joined the Wayne State University College of Engineering Board of Visitors.

Tatem received an M.S. in Civil Engineering from Wayne State and a B.S. in Engineering from Pratt Institute in New York. He resides in West Bloomfield with his wife, Maria Flores Tatem. The couple has two daughters, Isabela and Alma.


Wayne State University is a premier urban research institution of higher education offering 370 academic programs through 13 schools and colleges to nearly 28,000 students. For more information about engineering at Wayne State University, visit

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