Florida Tech Outstanding Alumni Achievement Awards
The Florida Tech Alumni Association recognizes distinguished alumni in two very important categories; through the prestigious Jerome P. Keuper Distinguished Alumni Award and the GOLD Award given to an alumnus or alumna who has distinguished him/herself and graduated within the last decade. Alumni nominate candidates for these awards which are presented at the Homecoming Gala each year. In addition, each college selects graduates who have made outstanding professional achievements in their chosen fields of endeavor to receive an Outstanding Achievement Award. These awards are also presented at the annual Homecoming Gala.
2013 Jerome P. Keuper Distinguished Alumni Award
Robert L. Phebus, Jr. ‘74
Rob Phebus retired from Ford Motor Company in 2008 after 32 years of service in the finance area, including 11 years of international assignments. His final position was as CFO of Ford Motor Company of Southern Africa.
He rose through the ranks at Ford, holding such positions as financial director for Ford Andina in Venezuela, Ford Brazil and Ford Lio Ho in Taiwan.
He was a member of the Florida Tech Alumni Association from 1995 to 2003, serving as president 1996–1997. Today, he is a member of the board of trustees, serving on the audit committee, the finance committee and the investment committee.
Phebus earned a bachelor’s degree in management science from Florida Tech in 1974 and an MBA, with a concentration in finance, from Notre Dame in 1976.
2013 Skurla Award
Mr. Nelson Cambata ‘78
Nelson Cambata graduated from FIT in 1978 and began working for the family business. He is now the Chairman and CEO of Cambata Aviation. Cambata Aviation is an international company employing over 7,000 people worldwide. StarPort Aviation is one of the US companies that was started by Nelson. StarPort is a full service FBO and maintenance facility (www.starportusa.com) located in Sanford, FL.
His passion for aviation is evinced by possession of both fixed wing and rotary-wing ratings. Nelson is type certificated in the BE400, MU300, BE350, and more. Nelson’s hobbies include car racing, motorcycles, competition shooting, and scuba diving.
He married the former Heidi Hartline in 1984. They have two children, Michael and Christopher. Michael recently graduated from F.I.T and now owns his own business, Dimension Ten, LLC. Christopher currently attends Embry Riddle University. Heidi spends a great deal of her time helping the community through The Marine Discovery Center and the local soup kitchen.
Nelson supports multiple charities including the Miami Center to Cure Paralysis, Mother Teresa’s Mission, Experimental Aircraft Association, Make-A-Wish Foundation, Angel Flight, Coronado Methodist Church, and St. Jude Children’s Hospital to name a few.
Nelson is a board member for Business Executives for National Security, a member of the President’s Circle for the Experimental Aircraft Association, a member of The Green Jacket Club, and the Explorers Club.
2013 Outstanding Alumni Awards
Nathan M. Bisk College of Business
Outstanding Alumni Award
Teresa Ho received her MBA from Florida Institute of Technology in 1998, and currently serves as the CFO of Artemis IT in Melbourne, Florida. Teresa was born and raised in Colon, Panama and moved to the United States to attend FIT after one year abroad at the University of Nottingham in England.
Teresa started her career with Artemis as the company’s office manager, later being promoted to director of business operations, and then to her current position as CFO. During her tenure at Artemis, she has managed the company’s HR and financial initiatives as the business grew from five employees to nearly 60 full-time staff. In addition to daily fiscal management, she was responsible for the financial integration of both an acquisition of a local telecom interconnect company in 1999 and then the strategic merger with NetDirective Technologies Inc. in 2012.
She states that her drive, passion, and work ethic come from lessons learned while working in the family business in Panama. However, it is her education at Florida Tech that she credits to arming her with the tools required to achieve her professional success.
Grateful for the success they have been afforded, Teresa and her husband, Travis, are strong community advocates, support many local non-profit organizations, and encourage entrepreneurial initiatives county wide. It is, however, the arrival of their 21 month old son that is the pride and joy of their lives.
Dr. Tino Alavie
College of Engineering
Outstanding Alumni Award
Dr. Alavie received the BS, MS and PhD degrees from Florida Tech in electrical engineering with his PhD awarded in 1992. He then became a post-doc at the University of Toronto continuing the work on fiber-optic sensors that he started at Florida Tech.
Dr. Alavie has founded several companies related to fiber optic sensing and the medical field and is now the Executive Chairman of NOVX Systems Inc. and CEO of Qvella Corp. Tino Alavie is a repeat entrepreneur who has been directly or indirectly responsible for creating, managing, and growing seven technology startups in North America and Europe from start to financial exit. Dr. Alavie recently co-founded TimeWyse Corporation. TimeWyse is a new consumer facing App development company. The company’s first product kidQ helps parents with answers to their parenting questions from social to educational to health and time management. kidQ has already been launched on Apple’s App Store and has a 10,000 strong following after only a short period of time. TimeWyse will be adding more features to kidQ and will leverage its intellectual property.
Dr. Gregory Price Lee
College of Psychology and Liberal Arts
Outstanding Alumni Award
Gregory P. Lee, PhD is President of the American Board of Professional Psychology and Professor of Neurology at the Medical College of Georgia where he is Director of the Adult Neuropsychology Service. Dr. Lee is board-certified in Clinical Neuropsychology by the American Board of Professional Psychology and is a fellow of the American Psychological Association and the National Academy of Neuropsychology. In addition to overseeing neuropsychological services for the Departments of Neurology and Neurosurgery, Dr. Lee also teaches courses in the behavioral neurosciences for medical, allied health, and neuroscience graduate students and serves as the Director of Clinical Training for the medical school’s postdoctoral neuropsychology fellowship program. Professor Lee is also an active researcher with over 200 publications dealing with human cerebral hemispheric specialization for memory functions, language, emotion, and other cognitive functions primarily using functional neuroimaging and epilepsy surgery models. Dr. Lee is a 1980 graduate of the Clinical Psychology PhD program at Florida Tech. He completed postdoctoral fellowships in neuropsychology at the University of Houston and Baylor College of Medicine (1983-84) and at the University of Wisconsin Medical School, Department of Neurology (1984 – 86).
Jonathan Zung, Ph.D.
College of Science
Outstanding Alumni Award
Jonathan Zung, Ph.D. is Vice President and head of Global Development Operations (GDO) at Bristol-Myers Squibb in Princeton, NJ. Global Development Operations integrates all key functions involved in setting up and managing the conduct of clinical trials, site monitoring, data management and review across all therapeutic areas from phase II through registration. The organization consists of 1300+ staff at 19 centers and operates in over 45 countries. Jonathan joined Bristol-Myers Squibb in December 2001 as Executive Director, Project Management. Since joining BMS he has held positions of increasing responsibility, including head of Global Project Management. He was responsible for and led the integration of the $2.1 Billion Medarex acquisition in 2009.
Prior to Bristol-Myers Squibb, Jonathan was with Pfizer Global Research and Development in Groton, CT from 1991 through 2001. At Pfizer he held various positions, with increasing responsibility in the Analytical Research and Development (AR&D) Department and in the Global Project Management organization. While in AR&D he led a group of scientists that supported the development and registration of GeodonIM, along with new and novel dosage forms for the line of extension of approved Pfizer products (Zithromax, Zoloftand Zyrtec).
Jonathan received his Ph.D. in Analytical Chemistry from Emory University, Atlanta, Georgia and his B.S. degree in Chemistry from the Florida Institute of Technology, Melbourne, Florida. He was named a member of The Florida Institute of Technology Board of Trustees in 2010. Jonathan is also chair of the Operations Committee for TransCelerate BioPharma.
Previous Years' Award Winners: