15 inducted into the College of Science Outstanding Alumni roster


Fifteen brilliant men and women were added to the annals of the College of Science Outstanding Alumni Sept. 25. A celebration was held in Lawson Commons within the Lawson Computer Science Building.

These alumni came from all over the United States as well as India and Taiwan. All seven departments and the Actuarial Science program were represented. Academics, industry leaders and even a venture capitalist accepted the honor.

The 2015 15 join the dozens of other Science Outstanding Alumni. Let’s meet the newest inductees:

  • After receiving her doctorate in Chemistry from Purdue, Jennifer S. Brodbelt began her academic career at the University of Texas, where she has since thrived. Dr. Brodbelt is the graduate adviser for her department while she continues her research on the development and application of photodissociation mass spectrometry for characterization of the structures and modifications of biological molecules.
  • Hoi Chang earned his Ph.D. and master’s degrees in Computer Science from Purdue. He is a co-founder of Arxan Technologies, Inc., a software company providing application-hardening tools using technologies originated from his Ph.D research. After 12 years with Arxan, Dr. Chang helped sell the company to a multibillion private equity firm. Today, Dr. Chang is busy creating new apps, many of which can be currently found in the Apple store.
  • Rahul Chari is vice president of supply chain technologies at Flipkart.com, the Amazon of India. His expertise in embedded systems, content management and delivery, fiber channel protocols, storage virtualization and data center storage applications have helped the supply chain succeed tremendously. Online ordering is crucial all over the world and Mr. Chari’s work has helped make it easier for millions of consumers.
  • An early stop on Tim Coffindaffer’s road to success was his PhD research with Chemistry Professor Ian Rothwell. Later, as a research fellow for Proctor & Gamble, Dr. Coffindaffer was the driving force behind 40 new product launches and over 75 patents and applications for the multinational manufacturer. By blending physical, chemical, analytical, and biochemical science, Dr. Coffindaffer and co-workers have developed products for Downy, H&S, Bounce, Pantene, Olay and Gillette.
  • Andrew Elmore is an Associate Professor at the University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science. Dr. Elmore received his applied physics bachelors from Purdue before establishing his landscape ecology and biogeochemical cycling in watersheds research. Dr. Elmore’s recent work has focused on measuring the effect of groundwater decline on wind erosion and air quality in deserts.
  • Eric Fox scored a hat trick of Purdue degrees during his time in West Lafayette: Bachelors degrees in mathematics and statistics as well as a master’s degree in Statistics. The years of training at Purdue led him to his current role as global project leader for Honeywell Process Solutions. Among Mr. Fox’s accomplishments there include deployment of a global product barcode system and database for tracking all products. He also led a business strategic plan while spearheading software test optimization initiatives in India.
  • Another product of our Math and Statistics programs is Chris Freese. Concentrating on actuarial science, he climbed to chief actuary for the Principal Financial Group before moving on to his current position as chief risk officer for US Insurance Solutions. Mr. Freese has been a fellow in the Society of Actuaries for almost 20 years.
  • Michele Gutenkunst Mouri graduated from Purdue with her master’s degree in Earth, Atmospheric, and Planetary Sciences. Since then, she has held a variety of positions within Chevron including assignments as an exploration, appraisal, development and operations geologist. During her adventurous career, she has worked the shelf and deep-water of the Gulf of Mexico as well as deep-water Nigeria.
  • After receiving her bachelors in Biological Sciences from Purdue, Michele Hood carved out an impressive career in the healthcare industry, with stops in hospitals from Atlanta to Montana. Today, she is president and CEO of Eastern Maine Healthcare Systems.
  • For more than 25 years, Frank Liu has moved hundreds of millions of dollars in venture capital and private equity investments in Singapore, Taiwan and China.
  • Representing the Department of Biological Sciences, Simon Rhodes is the dean of the School of Science at IUPUI. Dr. Rhodes has built a strategic plan, and he has overseen a new building, numerous grant awards and thousands of students to graduation. Along with his institutional leadership, Dr. Rhodes is continuing his research on the genetics of pediatric hormone deficiency diseases and how to improve treatment and diagnosis of those diseases.
  • After stints in the military and at Samsung Electronics, Dongwoo Sheen received his PhD from the Purdue Mathematics program. Dr. Sheen soon moved on to academia where he served as a professor of Mathematics at Seoul National University along with stops at New South Wales, Kyoto, Texas A&M and here at Purdue. In South Korea, he chaired the Interdisciplinary Program in Computational Science and Technology while pursuing research interests in numerical analysis and scientific computation.
  • Michael Stoppelman joined his older brother Jeremy Stoppelman’s then new website, Yelp!, in 2007. Almost 10 years later, Yelp! is worth more than hundreds of restaurants combined. Michael’s software engineering talents helped create that success. Today, he is vice president of engineering and gives tremendous inspiration to our 1,000-plus CS undergraduates.
  • Dibyajyoti Tripathy received his PhD in our Earth Sciences program within the Department of Earth, Atmospheric, and Planetary Sciences. Dr. Tripathy is a distinguished subject matter expert at Chevron in exploration and appraisal of unconventional resources like shale gas and shale oil. He is also a team leader of exploration and new ventures for Chevron’s mid-continent business unit based in Houston.
  • Richard Wien had an impressive academic career in chemistry, which eventually helped lead him to Hollywood thanks to his work at Eastman-Kodak. His research led to product improvements, helping earn his group a technical Academy Award and Emmy. The American Chemical Society named Dr. Wien a Hero of Chemistry. Today, he is a founder of medical device startups working to provide higher healthcare at lower costs.

OA's 2015

The 2015 College of Science Outstanding Alumni pose for a photo with Dr. Jeff Roberts, Frederick L. Hovde Dean of the College of Science (fourth from the right, first row).

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