Biographies

 

  George L. Bing '41 
Tuskegee Airman & Photographer
Inaugurated in: 2013

 

The late George L. Bing served his country proudly as one of the famed Tuskegee Airmen, America’s first black aviation unit in World War II. These 1,000 African American fighter pilots, called the Black Birdmen by the Germans, flew more than 1,500 missions. 

Mr. Bing later recalled telling his instructor during his first training flight in a Piper Cub, “Up until now the highest I’d ever been was the ninth floor of Brooklyn Technical High School.”

After the war he operated a successful photo studio in Brooklyn and then headed photography services for the Brooklyn Air Terminal and Brooklyn College. 


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Col. Karol J. Bobko '55
NASA Astronaut
Inaugurated in: 1999

A NASA astronaut who logged 386 hours in space on three missions, Col. Bobko was the pilot of the maiden voyage of the spacecraft Challenger, the mission that conducted the first shuttle space walk. He was the commander of the spacecraft Atlantis’ first flight. A member of the Air Force Academy’s first graduating class, he holds the Distinguished Flying Cross and two Meritorious Service Medals. He was awarded the Air Force Academy’s prestigious Jabara Award in 1983.


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  Harry Chapin '60
Entertainer & Humanitarian
Inaugurated in: 2000

 

While best known for his music, Harry Chapin was a man of many talents. He was a student of architecture, philosophy and music at Cornell University. He worked as a writer and editor in film. In 1966 Mr. Chapin made a boxing documentary entitled Legendary Champions that win the New York and Atlanta Film Festivals and earned an Academy Award nomination for Best Feature Documentary. Soon after completing this project, he worked on an Ethiopian famine film documentary, which had a great impact on the rest of his life. Mr. Chapin founded World Hunger Year, New York City Food and Hunger Hotline, Center for Food Action in New Jersey and Long Island Cares.

Mr. Chapin continued to concentrate on his music while working for humanitarian efforts, promoting the arts and contributing to more than 300 films between 1965- 1971. In 1972 he was nominated for a Grammy for Best New Artist. Over the next nine years he released ten albums. He wrote over 160 songs for the Emmy award winning network TV show “Make a Wish” which was hosted by his brother Tom. His fourth album went gold and included the hit “Cat’s In The Cradle.” His album “What Made America Famous” became the basis for his 1974 Broadway musical “The Night That Made America Famous.” The show garnered two Tony nominations in 1975. That same year, Mr. Chapin was nominated once again for a Grammy, this time for Best Performance by a Male vocalist.

Mr. Chapin continued to gain recognition for his humanitarian efforts, capitalizing on his popularity to further social causes. His tragic car accident on July 16, 1981 put an untimely end to his many good works. Many of the organization Mr. Chapin supported thrive today. In 1987, Harry Chapin was posthumously awarded the prestigious Congressional Gold Medal.


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  Frank A. Cipriani, Ph.D. '51
President, SUNY Farmingdale
Inaugurated in: 1998

Dr. Frank A. Cipriani is the fifth President of the State University of New York at Farmingdale. He is currently the most senior President among the thirty State operated campuses of SUNY, and celebrated completion of his 20th year as President of SUNY Farmingdale on April 27 1998. Dr. Cipriani began his career at SUNY Farmingdale as an Asst. Dean in 1964 with the School of Continuing Education. He rapidly rose through the ranks, moving in 1965 into the positions of Exec. Asst. to the President and, two years later, Vice President for Administration. He also holds the rank of Professor of History and Political Science at SUNY Farmingdale since 1967.

Prior to entering his present profession, Dr. Cirpiani was an officer in the US Air Force where he was honorably discharged holding the rank of Captain and the rating of Navigator-Flight Instructor. As a member of the American Society of Safety Engineers, he pursued his graduate studies while employed in the engineering department of an international insurance company. Dr. Cipriani is a graduate of Queens College, earning his Ph.D. at NYU. He speaks Italian and French fluently, and has been a strong advocate of international education and supporter of a strong humanities component in technical education curricula.

He has long been active in New York State and Long Island affairs, with a special concern for both the economic and environmental health of the region. His many affiliations include the Chairmanship of the Regional Industrial Technical Education (RITEC); Trustee of the LI Power Authority; Vice Pres. of the LI Forum for Technology; Chair of the Suffolk County Energy Task Force; Chairman of the Suffolk County Environmental Quality Council; and Chair of the LI Regional Advisory Council on Higher Education.


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Adam J. Cirillo '29
Educator, Coach, Mentor
Inaugurated in: 1998
 

Adam J. Cirillo has achievements in the fields of education, business, community service, engineering and the field of football, for which he is best known. The accomplishments of Brooklyn Tech football teams and players during his 30 years of coaching are unmatched. Mr. Cirillo’s efforts on and off the field turned boys into men. Alumnus Jerry Kaplan, Past President of the Parents Football Club wrote, "Adam Cirillo’s football record is unmatched by any of the coaches in the city, but more important than victories is the spirit, discipline and courage that Adam stood for and imparted to his players and fans." Mr. Cirillo, who came from a humble background, thought of football as a means to an end. The end he wanted "his boys" to obtain was a solid education that would lead to a rewarding life. His players attended the best of colleges - Princeton, Yale, Harvard, Penn, the service academies, Cornell, Colgate and of course, his alma mater, Lafayette. His players excelled in their careers that include company CEOs, head of the NY Stock Exchange, teachers, businessmen, coaches, engineers to mention a few. Mr. Cirillo’s legacy as a teacher, coach and leader has earned him recognition as "Mr. Tech."


 


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    Albert L. Colston, Ph.D.
Creator & Founding Principal of Brooklyn Tech
Inaugurated in: 1998

Dr. Albert L. Colston was the creator and founding principal of Brooklyn Technical High School. In the fall of 1918, Dr. Colston, then Chairman of the Mathematics and Mechanical Drawing Departments of Manual Training High School, presented a paper to the Brooklyn Engineers Club on "the modern technical high school" recommending the establishment of a technical high school curriculum for Brooklyn boys. He utilized his vision to implement a technical course of study at Manual Training High School and ultimately received, in 1922, the approval for the creation of Brooklyn Technical High School. He was nominated and chosen principal in 1922 and served outstandingly in this capacity for the next twenty years.

Dr. Colston’s commitment to technical education and his tremendous strength as an educator enabled him to generate the support for the building of the current Tech facility. The six million dollar new building that was opened in the fall of 1933 was the jewel of the New York City school system. Dr. Colston brought innovative programs to Tech such as the first aviation course given in any public school in the City, a radio station, extensive co-curricular programs, and the evolution of a technical curriculum that was in the forefront of high school education.

Dr. Colston’s vision, leadership, commitment and dedication to the concept of technical education was the driving force and the inspiration for the continued development of Brooklyn Technical High School. He is recognized as being a visionary in secondary technical education in New York City.


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Joseph M. Colucci '54
Engineer and Environmentalist
Inaugurated in: 2005

 

The leadership of JOSEPH M. COLUCCI ‘54, while Head of the General Motors Research Laboratories’ fuels and Lubricants Department, and while Executive Director of the GM R&D Center, resulted in fuels and lubricants that not only improved vehicle performance, durability and fuel economy, but also brought about large reductions in vehicle emissions and improved air quality. Perhaps Mr. Colucci’s most significant accomplishment was his leadership in the development of “cleaner” gasoline, now called reformulated gasoline (RFG), that makes up about one-third of all gasoline sold in the United States.


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  Gen. James E. Dalton '49
USAF Four Star General
Inaugurated in: 1998

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

General James E. Dalton, USAF (Retired), attended Brooklyn Ploytechnic Institute prior to entering West Point in 1950. Following graduation, he entered the Air Force and completed pilot training. Rising to four star rank in a distinguished 31 year Air Force career, he served in a number of key R & D, Operation Command and Staff positions. His assignments included development of operational targeting programs for ICBMs, combat and combat support flying in Southeast Asia, service on the US Delegation for the negotiation of SALT I Arms Control Agreement, Command of the 39th Aerospace Rescue & Recovery Wing, Command of the Air Reserve Personnel Center, Deputy Director of Concepts for HQ Air Force, Vice Director of the Joint Staff for the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Commandant of the Industrial College of the Armed Forces, and Chief of Staff, Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers Europe (SHAPE).

General Dalton’s education includes two Master of Science degrees in Engineering from the Univ. of Michigan. He is a distinguished graduate of Air Command and Staff College and the Industrial College of the Armed Forces. His military decorations and awards include three awards of the nation’s highest peacetime medal - the Defense Distinguished Service Medal - Legion of Merit with one Oak Leaf Cluster, Distinguished Flying Cross, Bronze Star Medal, Meritorious Service Medal with one Oak Leaf Cluster, Air Medal with five Oak Leaf Clusters, Presidential Unit Citation, Vietnamese Service Ribbon with six campaign stars, and others.

Since 1985 he has been a Vice President of Logicon Inc. and President of its wholly owned subsidiary, Logicon RDA. He has taken on increased responsibility over the years and today is the General Manager of Logicon’s Defense Technology Group comprising four companies, over 2,100 employees and sales in excess of $200 million annually.

General Dalton is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations, the Pacific Council on International Policy, the Order of Daedalians and a number of other groups. He is trustee of the Falcon Foundation of the USAF Academy.


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  Bernard Friedland, Ph.D. '48
Engineer, Author, Distinguished Professor
Inaugurated in: 1998

 

Bernard Friedland is a Distinguished Professor in the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department at the New Jersey Institute of Technology. He teaches system and control theory and engages in research in its applications. He has also taught at Technion-Israel Institute of Technology, Polytechnic University, New York University and Columbia University.

Dr. Friedland is author of two textbooks on automatic control, Control System Design: An Introduction to State-Space Methods (1986) and Advanced Control System Design (1995). He is co-authore of two other textbooks, one on circuit theory and the other on linear system theory, and is the author or co-author of over 100 technical papers on control theory and its application.

For 27 years prior to joining NJIT, Dr. Friedland was Manager of Systems Research in the Kearfott Guidance and Navigation Corporation, where he planned and directed the company’s program in modern control theory and its application. While at Kearfott, he was awarded 12 patents in the fields of navigation, instrumentation, and control systems. The 1982 Oldenberger Medal of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers was awarded to Dr. Friedland "in recognition of his creative extensions to the theory of optimal control and recursive filtering and its practical applications to the design of guidance and navigation systems."

Dr. Friedland is a Fellow of the IEEE and has served as a member of the Board of Governors of the IEEE Control Systems Society, which presented him with the Distinguished Member Award in 1985. A Fellow of the ASME, Dr. Friedland served on the Executive Committee of the Automatic Control Division from 1964-1969 and was chairman in 1967-68. He is also an Associate Fellow of the AIAA. His academic honors include a National Science Foundation Fellowship, the Illig Medal in Applied Science, Phi Beta Kappa, Sigma Xi, and Tau Beta Pi.

 

 

 

 

 

 


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  Bernard Gifford '61
Scientist, Educator, Change Agent
Inaugurated in: 2005

Dr. Bernard R. Gifford ’61 earned his Ph.D. in Radiation Biology and Biophysics from the University of Rochester Medical School, where he was an Atomic Energy Commission Fellow in Nuclear Science and a member of Phi Beta Kappa. During his tenure as Dean of the Graduate School of Education at the University of California, Berkeley, the school launched new Ph.D. programs in Mathematics and Science Education, Cognitive Science, and Instructional Technology. As Vice President of Education at Apple Computer Inc., he was responsible for all of Apple USA's K-12 and higher education programs and was considered an authority on education technology and public policy.

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