For Immediate Release
Apr. 20, 2017
Yvette Watson
(703) 549-2207, ext. 209
Chairman's Awards and Champion of Champions Awards Were Presented at NSBE's 43rd Annual Convention, in Kansas City, Mo

ALEXANDRIA, Va. — The National Society of Black Engineers (NSBE) is an organization of nearly 16,000 members dedicated to redressing the underrepresentation of blacks in their field. Broad corporate and government agency support makes possible the programs and activities NSBE utilizes to advance its mission and move toward its main 10-year strategic goal, which is to lead the U.S. to increase its number of African-American engineering bachelor’s degree recipients to 10,000 annually,  by 2025.

At NSBE’s 43rd Annual Convention in Kansas City, this past March 29–April 2nd, the Society recognized its most outstanding individual and organizational supporters with two awards. The 2017 Chairman’s Award honored 15 organizations that made a positive impact on black communities by contributing more than $100,000 to NSBE during the 2015–16 fiscal year. The Gene Washington Champion of Champions Award for 2017 recognized nine individual representatives of NSBE’s Board of Corporate Affiliates (BCA) — the Society’s top-level supporters — who went above and beyond the call of duty within their organizations on NSBE’s behalf.  Washington, a longtime executive at 3M, now retired, played a prominent role in founding the BCA.

“I was delighted to have the opportunity to meet with our honorees and their representatives in person to present these awards, which are small tokens of NSBE’s gratitude for their generosity,” said NSBE National Chair Matthew C. Nelson. “Their financial contributions, time and guidance are vital to the work that we do.”

A list of the award winners is below. Attendance at the Annual Convention, which took place at the Kansas City Convention Center and nearby venues, exceeded 10,000 aspiring and practicing engineers; educators; members of the Greater Kansas City community and representatives of more than 200 academic institutions, government agencies, corporations and nonprofit organizations.

“The good deeds of our Chairman’s Award and Champion of Champions Award recipients are proof positive that diversity and inclusion are alive and well in America,” said Karl W. Reid, Ed.D., NSBE executive director. “It is uplifting to know that our government and industry partners know the critical importance of our work to communities of color and the nation.”

With more than 500 chapters and nearly 16,000 active members in the U.S. and abroad, the National Society of Black Engineers (NSBE) is one of the largest student-governed organizations based in the United States. NSBE, founded in 1975, supports and promotes the aspirations of collegiate and pre-collegiate students and technical professionals in engineering and technology. NSBE’s mission is “to increase the number of culturally responsible black engineers who excel academically, succeed professionally and positively impact the community.” For more information, visit

NSBE 2017 Chairman’s Award Honorees

The Boeing Company
Chevron Corporation
Cummins, Inc.
The Dow Chemical Company
Ford Motor Company
General Motors Company
Intel Corporation
Nissan Americas
Northrop Grumman Corporation
Google Inc.
Toyota Motor North America
United States Coast Guard
United Technologies Corporation

NSBE 2017 Gene Washington Champion of Champions Award Honorees

Kevin Edwards, Manager, Quality & Six Sigma
Claudia Stephens, Senior Recruiter, Corporate HR – University Relations
Bechtel Corporation

Nancy Diaz, Program Manager
The Boeing Company

Niccole Boswell, Diversity Portfolio Manager
Joni Graves, Diversity Event Coordinator
Chevron Corporation

Zach Harris, Tech Program & Events – Diversity Specialist
Matt Howard, Lead, Tech Programs & Events
Justin Steele, Principal at
Google Inc.

Maria Sanchez, Corporate Manager, Strategic Partnerships and Conference Event Planning
Sandra Evers-Manly, President, Northrop Grumman Foundation
Northrop Grumman Corporation