Distinguished Service Award

The IEEE Photonics Society Distinguished Service Award was established to recognize an exceptional individual's contributions of service which have had significant benefit to the membership of the IEEE Photonics Society as a whole. This level of service will often include serving the Society in several capacities or in positions of significant responsibility. Candidates should be active members of the Society, for at least three consecutive years, however, the years of membership are not considered a defining factor. Demonstration of service prior to membership is also considered. 

The Award consists of an honorarium of $500 and a plaque. The presentation is made at the IEEE Photonics Conference.

2021 Honoree



Martin D. Dawson

For sustained leadership in society governance from local to international level, with special distinction in conference organization and strategy.



Martin Dawson is Professor and Director of Research at the University of Strathclyde's Institute of Photonics (IoP) in Glasgow UK, which he helped establish 25 years ago.  He is also, since 2012, the Head and Scientific Director o the Fraunhofer Center for Applied Photonics, the UK's first Fraunhofer centre which is co-located with the IoP.  Together, these two organizations emply over 100 staff and PhD/EngD students and have funded R&D collaborations with over 150 companies.

Martin's research interests span III-V semiconductor mterials science, microfabrication and optoelectronic and photonic devices, and extend to applications in communications, sensing, displays and imaging.  He is best known for his pioneering contributions to gallium nitride micro-LEDs (a new form of electronic visual display technology), optically pumped semiconductor lasers and diamond photonics.

Martin has been involved in the creation and development of several spin-out companies, including mLED Ltd which was acquired by Facebook/Oculus in 2016.  He holds fellowships of the IEEE, Optica, IOP and Royal Society of Edinburgh.  He served as a member of the IEEE Photonics Society's Board of Governors from 2013-2015, and as Vice-President Conferences from 2016-2018.


May 31st

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