Established in 1973, The Heritage Award honors alumni and friends of Johns Hopkins who have contributed outstanding service over an extended period to the progress of the university or the activities of the Alumni Association.
Warren E. Wilhide Sr. ’58
Warren E. Wilhide Sr. ’58 led a distinguished career in business consulting and manufacturing engineering, operating his own firm, Warren & Associates, after serving as executive director at Booz Allen Hamilton, and senior vice president of Quantum Group International.
Wilhide has been a dedicated and involved alumnus for decades. He is committed to supporting students and has volunteered extensively for both the Whiting School and the university. He has been an effective mentor to the students he met.
As a member of the University Alumni Council, Wilhide serves on several committees, including Life Long Learning and Student Programs. He is also a member of the Society of Engineering Alumni (SEA) Student Outreach Committee. In addition, he has served as a judge for the Whiting School’s spaghetti bridge contest, and provided students with practical advice on their projects, greatly adding to the value of the program.
As a member of the 50th Reunion Committee for the Class of 1958, Wilhide tirelessly called classmates to encourage them to return for the reunion celebration and to support the university by contributing to their class gift. The Class of 1958 established a new Hopkins record for class gift participation. Sadly, Wilhide’s beloved wife, Carol, who had also been an enthusiastic supporter of Johns Hopkins, died shortly before the reunion in Spring 2008. Knowing how important his participation would have been to her, he followed through on plans to assist his class and also attend.
Wilhide is a veteran and served in Korea before attending Hopkins on the G.I. Bill. “I am very thankful for my good fortune with Hopkins, my wife, Carol, and our family, and for so many other things,” he says.
Louis M. Brown ’65
A member of the Whiting School’s National Advisory Council (NAC) and chair of the NAC’s Finance Subcommittee, Louis M. Brown ’65 is an active and generous member of the Whiting School alumni community.
Brown, who is founder and CEO of MICROS Systems in Columbia, Maryland, was one of the first individuals to support the Dean’s Leadership Fund, and he and his wife, Wendy, have established a graduate fellowship at the Whiting School in their name.
In addition to his role with MICROS, which supplies high-tech, point-of-sale systems to restaurants and other businesses in the hospitality industry, Brown is involved with Concentia Digital. The start-up company has expertise in digital media management, with a focus on bioinformatics. He also serves as chairman of the board of Precision Auto Care. (Precision Auto Care Inc.’s affiliate, Precision Franchising LLC, is one of the world’s leading franchisers of auto care centers with 400 professional service facilities in six countries.)
At events with alumni and friends of Johns Hopkins, Brown underscores the importance of staying connected to the Whiting School and supporting it financially. He credits his engineering education at Johns Hopkins with giving him the problem-solving and criticalthinking abilities that have been so crucial to his success as an entrepreneur and businessman.
Distinguished Alumnus Award
Established in 1978, this award honors alumni who have typified the Johns Hopkins tradition of excellence and brought credit to the university by their personal accomplishment, professional achievement, or humanitarian service.
David C. Gakenheimer ’65
David C. Gakenheimer ’65, PhD is the principal developer of the Logicon Caries Detector, a groundbreaking image analysis software program that analyzes radiographs, looking for patterns of tooth decay, or caries. The software allows dentists to diagnose patients more accurately and provide early treatment before the decay leads to more serious problems. In 1998, Gakenheimer received a U.S. patent forthe idea and received FDA approval. The Logicon Caries Detector is currently used in more than 3,000 dental offices.
After signing an exclusive distribution agreement with PracticeWorks, a division of Eastman Kodak, Gakenheimer created his own business, GA Industries, to manufacture and further develop the Caries Detector. He later sold the product to Eastman Kodak and signed on as an employee, overseeing all sales and development of the product.
Prior to his work with the detector, Gakenheimer devoted most of his career to sensitive national defense projects. He made important discoveries into the effects of rain and cloud erosion on the front ends of missiles, and he advanced the study of high-powered lasers built to destroy missile boosters in flight. He has also created software aimed at training first responders in the management of mass casualties in the event of terrorist attacks using weapons of mass destruction. Other of Gakenheimer’s software innovations have focused on detecting weapons, explosives, and contraband drugs in airline luggage and ship containers, or concealed on individuals.
Gakenheimer received his bachelor’s degree in engineering mechanics from Johns Hopkins; he also holds master’s and doctoral degrees from the California Institute of Technology.