Named for the first dean of women at UT, the Angie Warren Perkins Award honors outstanding leadership in campus governance or administration at the level of department head, director, or below.
Veerle Keppens is director of the multidisciplinary and multicollege Joint Institute of Advanced Materials and a professor in the Department of Materials Science and Engineering. The institute is responsible for spearheading innovative research initiatives and houses world-class instrumentation facilities for the community at large. Keppens’s distinguished career at UT began in 2003, when she arrived as an assistant professor from the University of Mississippi. She has also held the position of associate dean in the Tickle College of Engineering—the first woman in that role—while also serving as department head. In addition to her leadership contributions, Keppens has amassed external support in excess of $2.5 million from the National Science Foundation and the US Departments of Defense and Energy. She has published 69 refereed papers, several in high-impact journals such as Nature, Nanotechnology, and Physical Review Letters. On the strength of her research, Keppens has been awarded the Fulbright-Hays, NATO, and Humbolt Fellowships in addition to several university awards. She was named a fellow of the Acoustical Society of America in 2011.