Dagher recognized with ACMA’s 2021 Academic Pioneer Award
Orono, Maine — Habib Dagher, executive director of the University of Maine Advanced Structures and Composites Center, is the inaugural recipient of the 2021 Academic Pioneer Award from the American Composites Manufacturers Association (ACMA). Dagher and the Advanced Structures and Composites Center team was honored in person at ACMA’s Membership Awards Ceremony and Reception on Oct. 18 in Dallas.
New in 2021, the Academic Pioneer Award recognizes individuals in academia with original, visionary and innovative ideas that have been scientifically investigated, tested and demonstrated to advance composites technology. More information about the ACMA awards is online.
Founded in 1979, ACMA is the world’s largest composites industry trade group of manufacturers, material and equipment suppliers, distributors, academia and end users, and is dedicated to growing the composites market.
“I am humbled and honored to have been selected as the first recipient of the Academic Pioneer in Composites Award from the ACMA,” Dagher said. “This award belongs to the exceptionally talented team of faculty, staff and thousands of students who have worked at the Advanced Structures and Composites Center over the past 25 years. One of our core values at the center is teamwork, that none of us is as smart as all of us, and this award is for the ASCC team.”
The Academic Pioneer Award recognizes Dagher’s leadership in advancing next-generation composite materials that are lighter and more durable, with a smaller carbon footprint. Examples include the award-winning composite arch bridge system known as Bridge in a Backpack, the commercialized composite bridge girder system known as GBeams, the Modular Ballistic Protection System that has been fielded by the U.S. Department of Defense, the Mark V.1 U.S. Navy Seals all-composites vessel, and the patented VolturnUS floating wind turbine technology that has attracted over $150 million in private and public investment.
“Dr. Dagher’s internationally recognized, pioneering work and vision in civil and environmental engineering have shaped the future, and inspired generations of undergraduate and graduate students,” said University of Maine President Joan Ferrini-Mundy. “His inspirational leadership and collaboration with colleagues and partners throughout Maine and the world epitomizes the important role of public research universities in innovation and workforce development.”
“Under Dr. Habib Dagher’s leadership, the University of Maine’s Advanced Structures and Composites Center is at the forefront of efforts to use cutting-edge materials and techniques to transform every sector of our economy, from manufacturing to our transportation network,” said U.S. Sen. Susan Collins. “This award is a well-deserved recognition for Dr. Dagher and his phenomenal team, who have helped to improve our infrastructure through innovative, resilient and cost-effective materials and techniques. The future of the UMaine Composites Center is bright, and I am proud to continue to support the excellent work of its faculty, staff and students.”
“There is no one more deserving of the American Composites Manufacturers Association’s Academic Pioneer award than Dr. Habib Dagher,” said U.S. Sen. Angus King. “The groundbreaking work by Dr. Dagher and his team at the University of Maine’s Advanced Structures and Composites Center has established the school as a global leader in their field. His work is vital to not only his students and the University of Maine, but the entire state, creating important new markets for our forest products industry and placing Maine at the center of a promising new technological sector. I want to congratulate Dr. Dagher on this well-earned award, and thank him for his continued commitment to this vital field and the state of Maine.”
“Over 25 years, Habib Dagher has built UMaine’s Advanced Structures and Composites Center into a world leader in materials sciences and engineering. ASCC’s innovative technology has been used by the U.S. military and hundreds of Maine companies, supports jobs all over the state, and continues to blaze the trail for the next generation of manufacturing in Maine. We congratulate Habib and the ASCC team on this well-deserved recognition, and wish them continued success in their cutting-edge work,” said Congresswoman Chellie Pingree and Congressman Jared Golden in a joint statement.