Hopedale, Massachusetts, resident Paul C. Washburn III was honored in October at the University of Massachusetts Amherst with a College of Engineering 2010 Outstanding Senior Alumni Award for having brought recognition and honor to the college through his professional achievements, leadership, and service to his profession, university, and society. Washburn earned his B.S. degree from UMass Amherst in Industrial Engineering & Operations Research in 1981 and his M.B.A. there in 1984.
Washburn’s 30-year career includes working for such notable technology companies as Digital Equipment Corporation, Quantum Corporation, Maxtor Corporation, and Seagate Technology, LLC. He has held positions leading site and corporate quality systems, business systems, industrial engineering, and configuration management organizations. He has also been an independent consultant.
As an expert in Lean, ISO 9001, and other quality and business process improvement tools, he led major initiatives to improve competitiveness, achieve high levels of customer satisfaction, reduce cost, and ensure regulatory and systems compliance at these companies.
Since his graduation from UMass Amherst, Washburn has remained involved with the College of Engineering. He served as an advisory member to the College for the Engineering Academy of Southern New England. He has been a member of the Mechanical and Industrial Engineering Department’s Industry Advisory Board since its inception and was elected co-chair in 2006. As its co-chair, he also serves as a member of the College of Engineering’s Advisory Board. Washburn has also helped the department prepare for, and successfully pass, its last two accreditation audits by the national Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology.
As a strong advocate for undergraduate student education, Washburn endowed a scholarship that provides awards to several deserving Industrial Engineering majors at UMass Amherst each year. Most recently, Washburn worked with the head of the Mechanical and Industrial Engineering Department to develop and implement strategies to increase undergraduate student enrollment in the Industrial Engineering major.
He lives in Hopedale with his wife Beth. They have two grown sons, Frank and Paul Scott. He enjoys traveling throughout North America and Europe. (November 2010)