LOUIS PADULO – Biographical Sketch
Louis Padulo is President Emeritus of the University City Science Center (UCSC), where he served as President and Chief Executive Officer since 1991, following a year's appointment as visiting scientist at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). Prior to that, Dr. Padulo was President of the University of Alabama in Huntsville (UAH). He was a Visiting Professor in the Media Lab at MIT and at the University of Tokyo before joining UAH. Previously Padulo spent thirteen years as Dean of the College of Engineering at Boston University and, in his last year, as Associate Vice President. During his tenure at Boston University he was also a professor of mathematics and of engineering, as well as a Senior Fellow at the Center for Technology, Strategy and Policy. Preceding Boston, Dr. Padulo served on the faculty of Stanford University for seven years, having formerly taught for nine years at Morehouse, Harvard, Columbia, Georgia State and San Jose State universities. Dr. Padulo has worked as a computer scientist for IBM, a design engineer for RCA, a systems analyst for the Mitre Corporation, and as a consultant for numerous national and international organizations. The author of two books and several articles, Padulo earned his doctorate at Georgia Institute of Technology, his master's degree from Stanford University, and his bachelor's degree from Fairleigh Dickinson University, all in electrical engineering.
Padulo has served as chairman of several regional and national committees, such as the Committee on Minorities in Engineering, the National Planning Commission for Expanding Minority Opportunities in Engineering, and the Committee on Women and Minorities. A lifetime member of the NAACP and a Fellow of both the American Society for Engineering Education (ASEE) and the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE), Padulo served as President of the Congress of Higher Education which represents eighty-three colleges and universities in the greater Philadelphia region. Dr. Padulo has also served on numerous boards, including LibertyNet, Fairleigh Dickinson University, the United Negro College Fund Advisory Board, International House of Philadelphia, the Philadelphia Education Fund, the Ben Franklin Technology Center of Southeastern Pennsylvania, Presbyterian Hospital, the Presbyterian Foundation for Philadelphia, and the Philadelphia Convention & Visitors Bureau.
Dr. Padulo has been honored with several awards for Excellence in Teaching and has been recognized for his work on behalf of minorities and women. Dr. Padulo was presented with the Reginald H. Jones Distinguished Service Award for Outstanding Contributions to the Minority Engineering Effort by the General Electric Foundation and NACME, and the Vincent Bendix Minorities in Engineering Award by ASEE. Padulo also directed two National Science Foundation sponsored programs which he created: Computational Research in Mathematics (at Morehouse College), and the Late Entry Accelerated Program (LEAP, at Boston University). Initially funded to help women with deficient science or math backgrounds return to school to earn master's degrees in computer and engineering fields, LEAP was expanded to include men and has enabled many talented individuals to start over and enjoy meaningful careers.
Dr. Padulo is married to Katharine Seamans Padulo, has two grown sons, Robert and Joseph, and two grandchildren, Jude and Edie Eugenia.
Born in Alabama in 1936, Louis Padulo grew up in the greater metropolitan New York area and attended inner-city public schools. He began his college education at Jersey City Junior College, a low-tuition community college where most students were older, commuted, and often carried full-time jobs while studying in the evening, as he did. After working for the Jersey Journal newspaper for two years, he decided to abandon his plan to write professionally and he won a scholarship to the brand-new engineering program at Fairleigh Dickinson University.
Following college graduation in 1959, Padulo worked at RCA off Highway 128 outside Boston. Becoming impatient with the slow progress of part-time graduate study at MIT, he accepted a fellowship to Stanford for the following year. As a graduate student at Stanford Padulo was the editor of The Chaparral humor magazine; for two years he taught half time and served as a Resident Assistant, or "RA" – first in a freshman dorm, then in a fraternity house. He paused after receiving his master's degree to teach full-time at neighboring San Jose State for a year, to see if he enjoyed the lifestyle of a college professor before deciding to complete a doctorate. Padulo married Katharine Arlaud Seamans in January of 1963.
Because he had been deeply interested in civil rights and a great admirer of Martin Luther King Jr., Louis and his bride moved to Atlanta where Dr. King had just gone to set up the Southern Christian Leadership Conference headquarters. On a full NASA fellowship at Georgia Tech, Padulo was the associate editor of The Rambler feature magazine, and was one of the founding partners in Atlanta's Festival Art Film Theater. After completing his Ph.D. in 1966, (he was the legendary B.J. Dasher's last Ph.D. student) and following the birth of his first son (Robert), he was then recruited by Dr. King, a trustee and an alumnus of Morehouse College, to join the Morehouse mathematics faculty. One year later Padulo was promoted to Chairman of the Department. He started and directed the Dual Degree Program between Georgia Tech and the historically black Atlanta University Center colleges (Clark, Morehouse, Morris Brown and Spelman) – the nation's largest producer of African-Americans with degrees in engineering.
In 1969 Padulo took a leave from Morehouse and returned to California as a visiting professor at Stanford to teach graduate courses in system theory and collaborate on a book. In 1970 his wife gave birth to their second son (Joseph) and in 1971 Padulo was honored to be nominated for and receive the Walter J. Gores Award for excellence in teaching in its founding ceremony. At the end of the visiting appointment, Padulo was invited and agreed to join the Stanford faculty where he continued his research and teaching and directed several special programs. In the ensuing years, Stanford proudly pointed out that Professor Padulo's personal advisees, able students (many from historically black colleges) whom he had recruited, constituted 50% of the electrical engineering and 25% of all engineering majors' graduate enrollments by minority students in the United States. During his final year at Stanford, Dr. Padulo moved his family into an undergraduate dormitory to serve as "Faculty Resident" of Toyon Hall.
In 1975 Padulo and his family moved to his wife's hometown of Boston where Padulo became dean of the College of Engineering at Boston University. Padulo continued his enthusiastic efforts to improve campus life and residence halls for students and to bring together disparate racial, national, religious and ethnic groups. For nearly three years, Dean Padulo again served as the "Faculty Member in Residence" by living with his family in a large, 800 person undergraduate dormitory to foster closer ties between faculty and students and to strengthen undergraduate education.
During Dean Padulo's thirteen-year tenure at Boston University – previously a primarily liberal arts, medical/health sciences, and fine arts institution – Padulo built distinguished engineering and science, cooperative education, and international programs.
From an undergraduate teaching college of 250 students, 12 full-time faculty members, the College of Engineering grew in scale and scope by an order of magnitude – into a major research institution with 2,500 students, 150 faculty, and roughly two dozen doctoral, masters and undergraduate accredited degree programs in 8 different fields. The College started an extremely successful cooperative education or "co-op" program, as well as a part-time graduate and continuing education program for surrounding high-tech companies using a live, interactive, instructional television and videotape system introduced by Dean Padulo. To expedite and cushion the shock of this explosive growth, Padulo enlisted engineers and business people as needed from industry, to act as Adjunct Faculty members and to mentor students. He also started a freshman advising system, in which he participated himself, which assigned incoming freshmen in small groups to faculty members who met with them weekly throughout their first year, loosely following Padulo's syllabus, and who continued as their academic advisors until their graduations.
Beyond the walls of the College of Engineering, Dean Padulo was active in the life of the entire university. In addition to being a Faculty Resident, for several years he served as Vice Chairman of the Athletic Council which oversaw all aspects of university athletics. An enthusiastic hockey fan, Padulo and his sons were season ticket holders and also were regular attendees at women's basketball games. On the academic side, Padulo introduced a design and architecture curriculum and recruited the faculty to teach it. He was one of the founders and a director of GEM, the National Consortium for Graduate Degrees for Minorities in Engineering and Science. He initiated and arranged several overseas branches and programs of international cooperation between the various colleges and schools of Boston University and institutions of other nations. In his final year at Boston University, Dr. Padulo, who was promoted to Associate Vice President, relocated with his family to Tokyo where during 1986-87 he continued his work establishing and strengthening overseas branches and programs throughout Asia.
Leaving Boston University after his year in Asia, Dr. Padulo spent a sabbatical year as a visiting professor at the University of Tokyo and at MIT's Media Laboratory. He then returned to his early roots (the place of his mother's family and his own birth) in north Alabama, as the president of the University of Alabama in Huntsville.
In his two years as president of the University of Alabama in Huntsville – a comprehensive public research university, known for its scientific and high-technology, space-oriented programs, including its innovative use of Space Camp to train high school teachers and the pioneering program in Space Nursing of its School of Nursing – President Padulo strove successfully to develop a strong undergraduate humanities and liberal arts program and, less successfully, to overcome the racial polarization which continues to cloud the state's progress.
Federal research grants increased by over 30% while enrollment increased by seven percent, and major new facilities were built for five different academic departments, classrooms and student residences. Dr. Padulo raised funds to endow three eminent scholar chairs in science, engineering and the humanities. He organized and led the preparation of a large Challenge Grant application to the National Endowment for the Humanities, and won the grant. He also led the successful effort to have NASA designate UAH a Space Grant College. To his delight, Dr. Padulo presided over the South's only Division I ice hockey team and supported a fledgling women's basketball team.
Extending the bounds of the University, Dr. Padulo started an English Language Institute for international students and arranged an exchange program with Japanese universities. He initiated cooperative, "dual degree" programs in engineering between UAH and six historically black colleges, including Morehouse and Spelman in Atlanta. He also initiated a research and training partnership with Alabama A&M, an historically black agricultural and mechanical arts school outside Huntsville. Undaunted by the Title VI imbroglio between the US government and the state of Alabama, Padulo sought out community leaders and colleagues at UAH and A & M, working to remove vestiges of segregation and to increase the academic and research collaboration between the two racially-divided institutions. President Padulo also worked closely with community groups and his own UAH education faculty to design improved curricula in science education, especially at the elementary school level. Following the resignations of the Chancellor and the Board Chairman who had hired him, and the appointment of a new Chairman and new Chancellor in 1990, Padulo resigned his presidency to spend a year in Boston as a visiting scientist at the Laboratory for Computer Science at MIT. In 1991 he and his wife moved to Philadelphia where he took the job of president and chief executive officer of the University City Science Center.
The University City Science Center promotes the application of scientific and technical knowledge to improve the quality of life and to foster economic development. The world's oldest business incubator, UCSC has launched over 240 successful startup organizations during the past three decades. The Science Center conducts and manages research and training programs (both for itself and for others), develops and consults to research parks around the world, and provides business development services – particularly technology transfer – to organizations large and small. UCSC's research park houses 140 science and technology-based organizations which range in size from one person to over 1,000 employees, together employing over 7,000 people. UCSC was incorporated in 1963 by 28 academic and scientific institutions in the geographic region between Washington, DC and New York City. Its 17-acre Philadelphia campus is contiguous with the campuses of two of its founding institutions, Drexel University and the University of Pennsylvania.
The Science Center flourished under Dr. Padulo's leadership since 1991. Within one year, UCSC was brought from a deficit position into stability and sustained financial growth. During his tenure UCSC added three new buildings to its Research Park campus and launched its first off-campus building project: University Technology Park – a business incubator – in Chester, Pennsylvania, to aid that impoverished community in its economic redevelopment. UCSC assisted Oxford University in the development of its research park and established the International Science Park Alliance linking UCSC, Oxford and Kyoto Research Parks. Padulo introduced numerous programs to assist universities in efforts to improve primary and secondary schools, to experiment with distance learning, to transfer discoveries from their laboratories to the marketplace, to internationalize their student bodies and curricula, to apply appropriate technology to education, to collaborate on research and education, and to pool administrative functions to lower their costs and provide better services to their students. He convinced UCSC to expand the number of its academic shareholders to include Rutgers, Rowan, University of the Arts and other regional institutions. He led UCSC and its partners in the establishment of the company Community of Science, Inc. and served as a founding director of that pioneering electronic information provider. He initiated the policy of having UCSC make equity investments in the high tech startups it was incubating. Dr. Padulo established the Building Air Quality Alliance, a national effort to improve indoor air quality (headquartered at the Science Center) which has trained hundreds of groups around the country. Padulo was a founding director of LibertyNet, which assists local governments, businesses, schools, colleges, non-profits and individuals in constructively utilizing the Internet and World Wide Web to strengthen communities and promote commerce. He has personally mentored dozens of young companies developing innovative new products and services ranging from miniature ornamental plants, nutraceuticals, systems for aquaculture and natural health products to videoconferencing, software, automobile ignition systems, adhesive taping systems, water purification, genetic mapping methods and medical devices.
Since living and working in Tokyo more than a decade ago, Dr. Padulo has maintained a network of friendships and associations which promote international economic, scientific, and cultural relationships between the US and other countries. At the Science Center, Dr. Padulo developed, and remained the principal investigator on, several consortial projects. One program taught Americans how to do business in Japan; another taught Russians, Ukrainians and others how to start entrepreneurial, high-tech companies of their own in an effort to help them move toward market economies, feed themselves, and achieve stable democratic societies. To promote international technology transfer and to turn military R&D into profitable, peaceful products, Padulo set up networks enabling daily commerce between British, Irish and Australian economic and political communities and their counterparts in the US, Japan, China and the former Soviet Union. Padulo has also been active in both the Foreign Policy Research Institute and the World Affairs Council.
In late 1996 Dr. Padulo stepped down from the administration of the Science Center and became President Emeritus. He chairs Invictus, a strategic consulting group and is actively involved in the life of the city and surrounding region through the many boards on which he serves. Padulo is an Adjunct Professor at the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania where he teaches New Product Design and he frequently teaches in executive and MBA programs of other institutions.