October 24, 2003
DALLAS (SMU) -- Tammy Richards, a former Texas Instruments marketing executive, has been named executive director of the Infinity Project. Richards assumed the role as executive director of the program on Oct. 13.
The Infinity Project was created in 2000 by the SMU School of Engineering and Texas Instruments to help school districts incorporate state-of-the art engineering and advanced technology into the high school classroom. This year, 78 high schools in 18 states and the District of Columbia are participating in the Infinity Project.
Richards has held a variety of marketing positions at Texas Instruments since 1982, including vice president of marketing for TI's successful Educational and Productivity Solutions business. In that role, she managed one of the nation's largest educator professional development programs known as Teachers Teaching with Technology, which provides workshops and seminars to more than 10,000 K-12 and college educators a year.
Geoffrey Orsak, associate dean of the SMU School of Engineering and executive director of The Institute for Engineering Education at SMU, had been serving as director of the Infinity Project since the program's creation.
"Tammy brings the perfect blend of executive and managerial experiences plus more than 15 years of passionate involvement in engineering, technology, math and science education," Orsak says. "We are fortunate to have her lead the Infinity Project on to even greater national prominence."
Richards received an undergraduate degree in industrial engineering from Texas A&M University, a MBA degree from the Harvard Graduate School of Business and is also a Registered Professional Engineer in the state of Texas.
Richards says she plans to continue the Infinity Project's expansion into schools across the country. "In today's world, technology and engineering is fundamental; it must be part of every child's education. My vision is to grow the Infinity Project from its current base of 78 schools to 500 schools in three years."
"If you can get kids through high school with the right technology, math and science courses, it opens up so many career opportunities for them," Richards says. Richards herself has two children, ages 6 and 10, who she hopes will go into engineering.