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2021 Alumni Award Honorees

UC San Diego has a history of disrupting the status quo, of looking deeper — beyond the surface. The same is true of the 200,000 Tritons out there in the world: alumni who are making a difference at home, in their communities and around the globe.

OUTSTANDING ALUMNUS

Franklin P. Antonio ’74

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Applied Physics & Information Science | Muir College Chief Scientist Emeritus, Qualcomm

Franklin P. Antonio

Scientist, engineer, inventor and industry leader, the career of Franklin Antonio culminates in his role as chief scientist at Qualcomm, where he has made transformational technological advances that touch all of our lives. His generous support of the UC San Diego Jacobs School of Engineering is enabling the next generation of Triton innovators to research, collaborate and make discoveries that improve and enhance lives around the globe.

Jessica U. Meir ’09

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Marine Biology | Scripps Institution of Oceanography NASA Astronaut

Jessica U. Meir

An accomplished scientist, researcher and NASA astronaut, Jessica Meir has brought her passion for knowledge and scientific understanding to the most extreme environments on and off the planet Earth. As flight engineer for Expedition 61–62 bound for the International Space Station, she also participated in the first all-female spacewalk. As a tireless proponent of science education, Meir has a deep-seated commitment to share her work and inspire the next generation of curious minds.

CHANGEMAKERS

James (Jim) S. Moffatt ’80

General Biology, Quant Econ & Decision Sciences | Warren College CEO, Deloitte Global Consulting (retired)

James (Jim) S. Moffatt ’80

After more than three decades with Deloitte Consulting, Jim Moffatt retired as CEO of Global Consulting, having helped companies and organizations around the world create significant societal impact. Moffatt was instrumental in creating the company’s acclaimed pro bono program, and is an acknowledged expert on innovation, leadership and global economic growth. As a cabinet member for the Campaign for UC San Diego, his valuable insights are helping to advance the University’s mission.

Shelley S. O’Connor ’83

Psychology | Muir College Chairman and CEO, Morgan Stanley U.S. Banks

Shelley S. O’Connor ’83

Inspiring and supporting the future of Science, Technology, Engineering and System architect for Sony PlayStation.

Chairman and CEO of Morgan Stanley U.S. Banks, Shelley O’Connor is a leader in her industry and a passionate advocate for women in the workplace. With more than 30 years at Morgan Stanley, O’Connor also works with multiple organizations focused on advancing and celebrating diversity at work.

INTERNATIONAL

Emily (Emi) A. Koch, MAS ’19

Marine Biodiversity and Conservation | Scripps Institution of Oceanography Founder, Beyond the Surface

Emily (Emi) A. Koch, MAS ’19

A humanitarian and social ecologist, Emi Koch founded the nonprofit, Beyond the Surface, providing positive youth development tools, training and safe-spaces for children from small-scale fishing villages— to cultivate attuned, caring relationships with themselves, society and their marine environment. Her global approach is grassroots, personally engaging youth and their families to celebrate their strengths, while addressing challenges impacting their social-ecological wellbeing and sustainable futures.

Anna S. Thorvaldsdottir, MA ’08, PhD ’11

Music Composer

Anna S. Thorvaldsdottir, MA ’08, PhD ’11

The musical compositions of Anna Thorvaldsdottir have been called “striking” and “never less than fascinating.” Composed as much by sound and nuance as by harmonies and lyrics, her work conveys an auditory ecosystem, where materials continuously grow in and out of each other, often inspired by nature. The recipient of several awards in her industry, her work has had a tremendous impact on contemporary music across the globe, advancing the frontiers of the art form.

EMERGING LEADERS

Deepak M. Atyam ’15

Aerospace Engineering | Muir College Co-founder and CEO, Tri-D Dynamics

Deepak M. Atyam ’15

As co-founder and CEO of Tri-D Dynamics, Deepak Atyam is pioneering the field of 3D printing using a cold metal fusion process—an innovative and versatile way to embed electronics in a variety of materials. At the Jacobs School of Engineering, Atyam led the student team that produced the first 3D printed rocket engine. He currently mentors students and serves on several campus committees, including the Graduates of the Last Decade steering committee.

Lauren D. Yee, MFA ’12

Theatre and Dance Playwright

Lauren D. Yee, MFA ’12

An acclaimed playwright, Lauren Yee has produced an impressive scope of work since earning her degree. Her plays are often deeply personal and champion great roles for Asian American performers, bringing a fresh voice to the spotlight and using it to reach a new generation of theater audiences. Yee has received several awards in her field, honoring her creativity and ambition. Her plays “The Great Leap” and “Cambodian Rock Band” are among the most produced in the country.

Start a Nomination

We’re seeking nominations for the True Triton Awards, recognizing exceptional volunteers, and the UC San Diego Alumni Awards, showcasing four different categories of impact. This is your opportunity to recognize exceptional alumni who have made a significant difference.

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