UTEP President Heather Wilson has been named a recipient of the Eisenhower Award, a recognition of prominent leadership given by the Center for the Study of the Presidency and Congress (CSPC).
“I am honored to be named a recipient of the Eisenhower Award,” President Wilson said. “I am especially pleased to share this award with Gwynne Shotwell, president of SpaceX, who has displayed a steadfast commitment to the fostering of technological advancements in space exploration.”
CSPC officials said President Wilson was recognized for her commitment to the American people and their security throughout her career as a U.S. Air Force officer, member of Congress and Secretary of the Air Force. During her tenure as Secretary of the Air Force, she positioned the force to adapt to the strategic challenges of the future, while remaining a tireless advocate for men and women in uniform.
The Eisenhower Award salutes enlightened leadership, strategic vision and character in the mold of the 34th President of the United States Dwight D. Eisenhower, who served as Supreme Allied Commander during World War II. President Wilson will receive the award along with Gwynne Shotwell, president and chief operating officer of SpaceX, who is being recognized for her work in the aerospace industry.
President Wilson entered UTEP’s highest leadership role at the start of the 2019-20 academic year.
UTEP is in the top 5% of public research universities in the United States and has achieved this distinction while being a national model for accessible higher education in the fourth largest manufacturing region in North America.
President Wilson believes UTEP is a model for the 21st century public university that advances discovery of public value, provides broad access to students from all backgrounds, and has a positive social and economic impact on the region it serves.
President Wilson came to UTEP after serving as Secretary of the United States Air Force. She is the former president of the South Dakota School of Mines & Technology, an engineering and science research university in Rapid City, South Dakota, and represented New Mexico in the United States Congress for 10 years. She also has worked in the private sector, serving as a senior adviser to defense and scientific industry and as president of Keystone International, a company she founded that conducted business development and program planning work.
“I am proud that CSPC will honor these two visionary and strategic leaders with our Eisenhower Award,” said former U.S. Rep. Glenn Nye, CSPC president and CEO, and former representative for Virginia’s Second Congressional District. “The leadership that Ms. Shotwell and Secretary Wilson have demonstrated in national security and technological innovation has pushed new frontiers while also ensuring the safety and prosperity of the American people.”
President Wilson will receive the award Monday, Oct. 21, 2019, during the organization’s 52nd Annual Awards Dinner in Washington, D.C.