Lifetime achievements and engineering contributions focus of UH awards dinner


Three alumni, decorated professor and community philanthropist honored by Engineering Alumni Association

William C. Miller

HOUSTON, June 3, 2004 For nearly 20 years, the Engineering Alumni Association (EAA) has recognized alumni, faculty and friends of the University of Houston's Cullen College of Engineering for significant contributions to society and the profession.

This year's recipients all are being honored for lifetime achievements and contributions to the field of engineering and include three distinguished UH engineering alumni, as well as a well-known philanthropist and long-time UH professor. The 17th annual Distinguished Engineering Alumni Awards Dinner, held at 7 p.m., Friday, June 4, at the Four Seasons Hotel in downtown Houston, also will feature Harris County Judge Robert Eckels as the evening's keynote speaker.

John W. Rouse

Distinguished Engineering Alumni recipients are William C. Miller, Jr., an independent oil operator, and John W. Rouse, a consultant and former Transocean executive. The award for Distinguished Young Engineering Alumna will go to Tanya Dugat Wickliff, a published writer and motivational speaker. Dan Luss, a UH chemical engineering professor, will be presented the Abraham E. Dukler Distinguished Engineering Faculty Award, and Elizabeth D. Rockwell, a philanthropist and community leader, will receive the Roger Eichhorn Leadership Service Award.

Tanya Dugat Wickliff, MBA

Miller, a 1955 UH graduate in petroleum engineering, is receiving one of the Distinguished Engineering Alumni Awards. Miller worked for Texaco Inc. while in school and became a petroleum engineer upon graduation. His career next took him to Blanco Oil Company, where he became chief engineer, and then moved on to become an independent oil operator and actively remains so today.

Rouse, a 1973 UH graduate in civil engineering, is receiving the other Distinguished Engineering Alumni Award. Rouse mostly spent his career in the oil and gas industry, working nearly three decades with Transocean, the world's largest offshore international drilling contractor. He recently retired as vice president of engineering and construction from Transocean and is now owner of JR Consulting, which provides technical expertise and project management to the oil and gas industry. In addition to being a registered professional engineer, Rouse also has received the International Association of Drilling Contractors Special Service Award and was the first recipient of the EAA's Roger Eichhorn Leadership Service Award in 1987.

Elizabeth Dennis Rockwell

Wickliff, a 1989 UH graduate in mechanical engineering, is receiving the Distinguished Young Engineering Alumna Award. After finishing a master's in business administration from the University of Texas in Dallas in 2000, Wickliff went on to pursue her doctorate and currently is a Ph.D. candidate in engineering at Texas A&M University, having completed all but her final defense. She is now principal owner of Tancoe Resources Unlimited, a consulting firm. Upon graduation, Wickliff started her professional career with Motorola as a project engineer and was then promoted to the post of final test production manager for digital signal processing. She also has worked in management positions for Conoco and Texas Instruments. Wickliff additionally is a published writer, with her debut work appearing in "Keeping the Faith," an inspirational book by Tavis Smiley, a national radio and television personality. Wickliff also is gaining popularity as a national motivational speaker.

Dan Luss

Luss, the Abraham E. Dukler Distinguished Engineering Faculty Award winner, joined the UH chemical engineering department in 1967 and served as chair of the department for more than 20 years. Under his leadership, the department was elevated to be one of the Top 10 in the nation and still maintains a high rank. Luss' professional accomplishments were recognized by his election to the National Academy of Engineering in 1984. He also has received the Colburn Award, the Professional Progress Award and the Wilhelm Award, all from the American Institute of Chemical Engineers.

Rockwell, a fourth generation Houstonian, is widely recognized as an expert in retirement, estate, investment and tax planning. Rockwell's business career spanned leadership roles at several Houston corporations, culminating with her position as executive director of the Private Client Division of CIBC Oppenheimer Corp., from which she partially retired. Rockwell serves on the Board of Governors Executive Committee for the Houston Forum, advisory council of the Greater Houston Women's Foundation, Houston Educational Excellence Foundation Board, UH Cullen College of Engineering's Leadership Board, finance committee of the Houston Alumni Organization, and the UH Foundation Board. Among numerous UH honors, she has received an Honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters and the Dean's Circle Award from the Cullen College of Engineering.

For event information, visit or contact Janice Quiroz at 713-743-4215 or [email protected].

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