Michigan State University Alumni Office to Honor Awards Recipients Dr. Shashikant Gupta, Ms. Margaret Gupta, Michael Lamach and Dr. Ellen Williams

The Guptas, co-founders and leaders of Apex CoVantage, to receive the Philanthropist Award; Lamach, chairman and CEO of Ingersoll Rand, and Dr. Williams, distinguished professor of physics at the University of Maryland, to receive Distinguished Alumni Award at Oct. 25 gala.

The Michigan State University Alumni Office will recognize Dr. Shashikant Gupta and Ms. Margaret Gupta, of Apex CoVantage, with the Philanthropist Award at the annual Grand Awards Gala Oct. 25. The office will also recognize Michael Lamach, chairman and CEO of Ingersoll Rand, and Dr. Ellen Williams, distinguished professor of physics at the University of Maryland, with Distinguished Alumni Awards.

“This year’s recipients embody how Spartans Will. continue to be a force for good in the world,” said Nick McLaren, executive director, MSU Alumni Office. “These individuals have combined their inherent drive, passions and support for MSU to help others, break barriers and create a better future.”

Dr. Shashikant Gupta and Ms. Margaret Gupta: Philanthropist Award Recipients

“The Guptas are being recognized for their outright gift of $2.5 million to create the Gupta Values Scholars Program at MSU,” said McLaren. “Developed after their own business model and core values of integrity, human dignity and excellence, the program’s mission aligns with MSU’s own: to advance the common good.”

The Gupta Values Scholars Program currently supports 21 students. Each Gupta Scholar receives a $5,000 annual tuition award for four years, as well as a one-time $5,000 award earmarked for an experiential learning experience that reinforces these core values. Additionally, scholars travel to Washington D.C. each year to spend the weekend with the Guptas, who provide unique opportunities, including a tour of their company headquarters and other organizations supported through their foundation, thought-provoking field trips and opportunities to interact with individuals who model the Gupta values.

Philanthropist Award recipients include those individuals, families, associations, corporations or foundations that have generously demonstrated ongoing financial support and leadership to MSU.

Dr. Shashikant Gupta received his MBA in Hospitality Business from MSU’s Eli Broad College of Business and his Ph.D. in economics from MSU’s College of Social Science. Margaret Gupta serves as president of the Gupta Family Foundation, a private foundation that supports organizations around the globe dedicated to helping disadvantaged people become self-reliant. Together, the Guptas also co-founded WinVirginia and WinDEM, political action committees dedicated to strengthening our democracy and encouraging civic dialog in American society.


Michael Lamach: Distinguished Alumni Award Recipient

Distinguished Alumni Award recipients include alumni that have differentiated themselves by achieving the highest level of professional accomplishment. Lamach received his B.S. in engineering from MSU’s College of Engineering.

Lamach first joined Ingersoll Rand in 2004 as president of its Security Technologies sector, before leading the Trane Commercial business, and then serving as president and chief operating officer. Prior to joining the company, he also served in various global business leadership roles for Johnson Controls. Under Lamach’s leadership, Ingersoll Rand has consistently outperformed both the S&P 500 and the S&P Industrial Index, and has reduced global greenhouse gas emissions from operations by 45%, and from products by nearly 50%. Ingersoll Rand also has industry-leading levels of employee engagement, and was the first industrial company to join Paradigm for Parity.

Together with his wife, Lamach established the Michael and Mary Lamach Engineering Scholarship Fund. The couple also hosts students during spring breaks, offers internship opportunities, supports MSU’s College of Engineering’s Design Days, and are members of the MSU Abbot Society.

“I firmly believe that our students – along with the rest of their generation – will push us to higher levels of sustainable practices and world citizenship,” said Lamach. “There’s something special about our Spartan spirit that you can’t find anywhere else.”

Dr. Ellen Williams: Distinguished Alumni Award Recipient

Dr. Williams received her B.S. in chemistry from MSU’s College of Natural Science and Honorary Ph.D. in science from MSU.

An accomplished surface properties and nanotechnology researcher, Dr. Williams joined the University of Maryland in 1981 and in 1991, founded the University of Maryland Materials Research Science and Engineering Center. She has published over 200 articles, which have been cited over 8,000 times. She was elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 2003 and the National Academy of Sciences in 2005.

In 2009, Dr. Williams chaired a special committee of the National Research Council to review issues related to the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty. In 2010, she was recruited to be chief scientist at BP. In 2014, she received Senate confirmation to lead the Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy. Dr. Williams served on the International Security Advisory Board of the U.S. Department of State and was also a member of the NAS Policy and Global Affairs Committee.

“Today’s innovators are pushing the boundaries of what is possible with energy,” said Dr. Williams. “But we as scientists must provide policymakers with options that are both technically and economically feasible. I believe it’s fundamental for the future of our civilization.”

The Guptas, Lamach and Dr. Williams are among 13 alumni and donors worldwide being honored at the annual Grand Awards Gala held on MSU’s campus at the Kellogg Hotel and Conference Center. Registration to attend the exclusive event is open through Oct. 18. For more information, visit alumni.msu.edu/grandawards.

About MSU Alumni: The MSU Alumni Office is dedicated to advancing Michigan State University by building pride and strategically fostering meaningful engagement of Spartans through connection, service and investment. More than 550,000 alumni represent MSU globally. For more information, visit [alumni.msu.edu.

These individuals have combined their inherent drive, passions and support for MSU to help others, break barriers and create a better future.