Chew: George and Ann Fisher Distinguished Professor of Engineering

Professorship: George and Ann Fisher Professor in Engineering

George M. C. Fisher, a native of Anna, Illinois, earned a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering in 1962. After earning master’s and doctoral degrees from Brown University, he began his career at AT&T Bell Laboratories. Later he joined Motorola, Inc., eventually becoming the company’s chairman and chief executive officer. He assumed leadership of Eastman Kodak Company in 1993.

Fisher is active in civic, educational, and community affairs and has served on the University of Illinois Foundation’s Board of Directors since 1987. He was national co-chair of Campaign Illinois. He has been a force in national business affairs, serving as chairman of the U.S. Council on Competitiveness from 1991 to 1993 and has also been active in international trade issues. He was elected a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 1993 and was named to the National Academy of Engineering in 1994.

Ann Wallace Fisher received a bachelor of arts degree from Chapman College in 1964 and, with her husband, is a supporter of the University of Illinois. Together they have pledged $2 million to the College of Engineering to fund two George and Ann Fisher Distinguished Professorships and two Ralph M. and Catherine V. Fisher Professorships, the latter in honor of Dr. Fisher’s parents.

Weng Cho Chew

Weng Cho Chew
Weng Cho Chew

Weng Cho Chew joined Illinois ECE in 1985 as an associate professor, and became a full professor in 1990. He is also affiliated with the Department of Computer Science. He served as director for the University of Illinois Center for Computational Electromagnetics and Electromagnetics Laboratory from 1995 to 2007, and the Dean of Faculty of Engineering at The University of Hong Kong from 2007 to 2011 while on a special leave of absence from Illinois. He was the first Y.T. Lo Chair Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering, from 2005 until 2009, and a Founder Professor of Engineering from 2000 to 2005. Chew earned a PhD in electrical engineering at Massachusetts Institute of Technology in June 1980.

Before coming to Illinois, Chew was a department manager and program leader at Schlumberger-Doll Research. Chew’s research interest is in adding modern physics and multi-physics concepts to computational works. This includes developing models for solar cells, nano-electronic, quantum transport, and Casimir force. He also studies computational methods to solve the multi-scale problem in computer chip and circuit design. He works with the Area of Excellence Project at The University of Hong Kong on the project, “Theory, Modeling, and Simulation of Emerging Electronics.”

Previously, he designed experiments with his graduate students to demonstrate super-resolution phenomena of nonlinear inverse scattering. Working with his research group and NCSA in 2004, Chew solved record-size electromagnetic scattering problems with 20 million unknowns. He is the originator of several fast algorithms for solving electromagnetics scattering and inverse problems. He authored a book, Waves and Fields in Inhomogeneous Media, and coauthored two books, Fast and Efficient  Algorithms in Computational Electromagnetics, and Integral Equation Methods for Electromagnetic and Elastic Waves. He’s written more than 300 scientific journal articles, 400 conference papers, and many book chapters and lecture notes. He holds several patents. Chew is a Fellow of IEEE, OSA, IOP, and HKIE.

He was named an NSF Presidential Young Investigator in 1986. He won the IEEE Year 2000 Graduate Teaching Award, the Illinois Campus Award for Excellence in Graduate and Professional Teaching for 2001, and the IEEE AP Chen-To Tai Distinguished Educator Award in 2008. He was co-winner of the Schelkunoff Best Paper Award for 2001. In 2002, ISI Citation elected him to the category of Most-Highly Cited Authors. He was elected to the National Academy of Engineering in 2013. He is active in international collaborations.