Vaughn College has announced the appointment of two new board members beginning in October 2021. Their backgrounds in aviation and aerospace bring a wealth of knowledge to the College to assist in fulfilling its vision “To change the world one student at a time with a transformational education that creates a lifetime of opportunity.”
Patty Clark has recently retired from the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey as the chief strategy officer in the aviation department and Dr. Surya Raghu, an innovator and entrepreneur, is the founder-president of the high-tech company Advanced Fluidics, LLC since 2001 and founding partner of a nonprofit company ET Cube International, Inc.
“It is an honor to be able to work together with the board and the administration to help further the mission of this very special institution and the students it serves. What a privilege to support students and graduates as they embark on careers in aerospace and aviation—an industry that I love,” said Clark.
Clark joined the Port Authority’s New York Airport Access Program in 1995 and helped secure all federal, state and local regulatory approvals and funding from the Federal Aviation Administration for the John F. Kennedy (JFK) International Airport AirTrain project. In 2000, she worked as a senior adviser to the aviation director, spearheading major planning and capital projects, resulting in the LaGuardia Airport and JFK Redevelopment Programs. In 2017, she was named the department’s first chief strategy officer and had been responsible for managing the aviation department’s strategic, legislative and regulatory agendas. She is currently establishing her own consulting firm that will focus on improving diversity, equality and inclusion in the aviation sector, and aviation policy and regulatory matters.
Before founding Advanced Fluidics, Dr. Raghu’s earlier affiliations were with Yale University, Technical University of Berlin (Germany), SUNY Stony Brook and Bowles Fluidics Corporation. He has also been a visiting scientist at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) and the Air Force Office of Scientific Research (AFOSR) Laboratories, a guest lecturer at Kyushu Institute of Technology, Japan and currently a visiting professor at the University of Witwatersrand, South Africa.
Dr. Raghu has inventions related to aerospace, automotive, consumer and biotechnology applications and has been awarded 15 US patents as an inventor or co-inventor. In addition to his research and development work in aerodynamics, he works with various organizations on capacity building for innovation, technology transfer, research commercialization and entrepreneurship in more than 25 developing countries.
The dual mode of working as an engineer-entrepreneur and teaching both in the US and in developing countries, combined with his own background as a first-generation college graduate and immigrant, has enabled Dr. Raghu to understand situations related to such students and inspire them to pursue their education and dream careers.
“I am having a great career as an engineer, entrepreneur and educator and want to create excitement of all possibilities for the students at Vaughn College by working with the board and college administration towards this goal,” said Raghu.
“We are very fortunate to have such prominent and knowledgeable individuals with impressive qualifications as Ms. Clark and Dr. Raghu join our board of trustees. Their backgrounds and experience will enhance our community and provide important guidance as we develop new curricula and continue to launch the next generation of engineers, managers, and entrepreneurs into the fields of aerospace, engineering, transportation, and energy alternatives,” said Vaughn College President Dr. Sharon B. DeVivo.