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The 38th annual BEYA Gala is just over five weeks away, and we’re taking a look at past winners of category awards that are traditionally presented at the Saturday night gala, which is the grand finale of the three-day BEYA weekend.

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Kerron Duncan, an employee of Northrop Grumman Corporation, was honored at the 2017 Black Engineer of the Year Conference and received the BEYA Industry Professional Achievement award.

Duncan is the manager of mission and model-based engineering for Northrop Grumman Mission Systems, where he leads teams involved in radar systems, electronic warfare, electro-optic infrared, communications, and cyber.

He has authored six publications and received 14 invention disclosures. In 2007, he was presented with the BEYA Modern Day Technology Leader Award and has actively supported STEM in the community through the Baltimore City/County After School programs, VEX Robotics, and the Northrop Grumman High School Involvement Partnership mentor program. He earned a bachelor’s and master’s degree in electrical and computer engineering from Morgan State University.

The BEYA Conference recognizes science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) professionals with the Professional Achievement award for their significant discoveries or advancements in their career paths. These professionals are acknowledged as leaders of large STEM initiatives.

2023 Professional Achievement Award winner Sean Bradshaw, Ph.D., is a senior technical fellow for sustainability at Pratt and Whitney, where he focuses on reducing the environmental footprint of aircraft engines.

With a Ph.D. from M.I.T., he has become an expert in combustion technology, a critical part of reducing emissions from future engines. As a professor at Columbia University, he is also contributing to the development of the next generation of engineers.

During the BEYA gala in February, Sean Bradshaw said, “Children inspired by the excitement of space flight have come to appreciate the wonder of science, the beauty of mathematics, and the precision of engineering. I was one of those children, and now I work alongside brilliant aerospace engineers at Raytheon Technologies to develop aerospace product solutions that connect people, grow economies, and defend freedom.”

Paige Brown, Ph.D., is an accomplished engineer, working to ensure the safety and efficacy of medical devices to protect public health in the United States. She also has experience researching, developing, and leading diversity, equity, and inclusion programs in engineering education and the workplace.

As the new diversity, equity, inclusion, and accessibility officer for the labor department, she aspires to help transform the engineering culture to be inclusive and welcoming to all.

Paige Brown said, “I am accepting this particular award today because of the influential individuals who helped me begin my career in the federal government. My path would have been different if it weren’t for Mr. Larry Wilkerson and Mr. Coolidge Hamlett serving as my mentors, sponsors, and advocates to other young Black engineers and me. Their encouragement and advice set me up to excel as an engineer in the federal government; I strive to be the same source of support for other engineers in their professional engineering journey.”

Wilkerson and Hamlett were both trailblazing leaders at the Naval Air Systems Command.

Dr. Patrick Taylor has been a leader in power and energy at the U.S. Army Combat Capabilities Development Command—Aviation and Missile Center. He has many layers, being an engineer, a media personality, a martial artist, an entrepreneur, a teacher, and a rocket scientist. More importantly, he’s a mentor and guide for the next generation of STEM professionals.

“Through my experiences with the media, I’ve met presidents, hall of fame athletes, and celebrities, but my most significant interactions are with students and those who wish to learn,” Taylor said. “So many people have come before me whose hard work and sacrifice have allowed me to be here today. Science and engineering have always been essential parts of my life. I’ve accepted the mantle to strive for personal success and be a friend, mentor, and example to those who follow in my footsteps.”

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