J. David Irwin
J. David Irwin’s dedicated leadership has influenced the growth of engineering education programs while serving as an exemplary role model for faculty and students for over four decades. Dr. Irwin has made substantial contributions to the modernization of Auburn University’s electrical and computer engineering (ECE) program. Through a number of strategic decisions and the motivation of faculty, staff, students, and alumni, he was able to change the culture of the department from one that was local in nature to one that thinks and operates globally. Named head of the then Electrical Engineering Department in 1973 and serving in that capacity until 2009, he is considered one of the longest-serving ECE department heads in the world. His accomplishments include developing what at the time was only the second microelectronics laboratory in southeastern United States. He oversaw the initial development of Auburn’s computer science and engineering program and was also instrumental in developing a first-of-its- kind accredited degree program in wireless engineering. Dr. Irwin also implemented the ECE Industrial Advisory Board to acquire industry input on how to improve the department’s educational experience, which served as a model for other engineering departments. Dr. Irwin’s influential textbooks have been used by hundreds of thousands of engineering students around the world. Many of his former students have become important industry leaders or outstanding educators in their own right. With expertise in circuit analysis and design, Dr. Irwin continues to teach and conduct research at Auburn today.
An IEEE Life Fellow and Fellow of the American Society for Engineering Education, Dr. Irwin’s many honors include the Auburn University Mortar Board Distinguished Professor Award (2004) and the IEEE Education Society Meritorious Service Award (2005). He is currently the Earle C. Williams Eminent Scholar at Auburn University, Auburn, AL, USA.