Yeh wins International Award
Photo (left to right): College of Engineering Dean Andreas Cangellaris, M.T. Geoffrey Yeh, CEE Department Head Benito Mariñas
CEE at Illinois alumnus M.T. Geoffrey Yeh (BS 53), chair of Hsin Chong International Holdings Ltd., was presented with the 2015 Madhuri and Jagdish N. Sheth International Alumni Award for Exceptional Achievement on May 31, 2016, in a special ceremony at the Hong Kong Club in Hong Kong. The award is given by Illinois International Programs. Yeh had been unable to attend the campus awards ceremony in April, so College of Engineering Dean Andreas Cangellaris traveled to Hong Kong to present the award. CEE Professor and Head Benito Mariñas was also in Hong Kong to honor Yeh.
Established in 2000, the Madhuri and Jagdish N. Sheth International Alumni Award for Exceptional Achievement recognizes the University’s distinguished international alumni. Recipients of the award include individuals who are highly distinguished in their professions, either international or nationally in their own country; who have helped their nations or the world by outstanding contributions to government, humanity, science, art or human welfare; and who exemplify the strength of their education at Illinois. Jagdish Sheth is a former faculty member in Illinois’ College of Business. He and his wife, Madhuri, currently live in Atlanta, where he serves as the Charles H. Kellstadt Professor of Marketing at Emory University.
Yeh has made significant and lasting contributions to the construction and financial sectors in Hong Kong, serving as chair of the Hsin Chong Group of Companies, including Hsin Chong Construction Group Ltd., a publicly listed company, until his retirement in 2002. After studying civil engineering at the University of Illinois and earning a master’s degree from Harvard University, Yeh joined Hsin Chong and Company in Hong Kong, the construction company founded in 1955 by his late father, K.N. Godfrey Yeh. Yeh founded the Yeh Family Philanthropy, a family foundation, in 2011. A member of the President’s Council of the University of Illinois Foundation, Yeh was the lead donor for the M.T. Geoffrey Yeh Student Center, a 20,500-square-foot addition to Newmark Civil Engineering Laboratory that provides state-of-the-art classrooms, meeting rooms and informal gathering space for students in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering (CEE) at Illinois. He also established an endowed chair in the CEE department, the M.T. Geoffrey Yeh Endowed Chair in Civil Engineering.
“Those who meet Geoffrey cannot help but be touched and inspired by his warmth, his humility, his vision for bettering the world and his Illini spirit,” Mariñas said. “We are honored to call Geoffrey Yeh an alumnus of CEE at Illinois, and we are delighted that he is being honored with the Madhuri and Jagdish N. Sheth International Alumni Award for Exceptional Achievement. He is most deserving.”