The Lifetime Professional Achievement Award recognizes professionals in government, industry, or academia who have demonstrated long-term leadership in AUTOTESTCON fields-of-interest. The Award supersedes the former AUTOTESTCON “Frank McGinnis Professional Achievement” and “Man of the Year” awards. The Award is presented at the AUTOTESTCON awards luncheon by the AUTOTESTCON Board Chair or Vice-Chair. The Award includes a check, from the current AUTOTESTCON budget, in the amount of $2,000.00, plus a suitable permanent trophy. Prior to 2009, the Award consisted of one-year stewardship of a perpetual trophy, and the following year, when the perpetual trophy was awarded to another recipient, the previous winner would receive receives a smaller “keeper” trophy or commemorative plaque, also sponsored by the then-current AUTOTESTCON committee from its budget. In 2009, the permanent award was given to the National Electronics Museum near Baltimore MD to be put on permanent display via a one-time grant from the Aerospace & Electronic Systems Society. The trophy is ordered by the Agent of the AUTOTESTCON Board, and as previously noted, paid for by the current AUTOTESTCON Committee.


The Lifetime Professional Achievement Award is sponsored by the AUTOTESTCON Board of Directors, and funded by the current year AUTOTESTCON.

Award Criteria
  • Nominees must have clearly demonstrated professional (technical or managerial) achievements in AUTOTESTCON fields-of-interest spanning a career
  • Nominees should have name recognition within the AUTOTESTCON community
  • The Nominee’s demonstrated achievements should have significant impact across the AUTOTESTCON community, beyond the normal functional duties of his/her organization
  • Nominees should have visible participation in AUTOTESTCON
  • Nominations may be submitted by any individual, regardless of affiliation
  • Nominations should be accompanied by a short biographical sketch, along with a short (300-500) word summary recommendation.
Nomination & Balloting Process
  • Each year, the AUTOTESTCON Board of Directors will solicit nominations via a variety of means, including AUTOTESTCON attendees, AUTOTESTCON exhibitors, IEEE Sponsoring Societies (I&M, AESS), personal contacts, etc.
  • Award nomination solicitations should be publicized via I&M Magazine and AESS Magazine announcements, along with notices sent to various trade publications and organizations that are concerned with automated test.
  • Nominations are to be sent to the designated Agent of the Board
  • Once nominations are received, which should occur no later than May 1 of each year, balloting shall occur among Board members, with each member having one vote.
  • Ballots shall be sent to Board members with instructions to note 1st choice, 2nd choice, etc. Ballots shall be tallied by adding all numbers per candidate, with the lowest count winning. A ballot received with a blank space by a candidate’s name shall be counted as a number representing the highest number of candidates on the ballot.
  • Ballots shall also have a “no award” entry, and if a simple majority of votes cast indicate “no award”, then the Lifetime Professional Award will be not presented for that year
Nominate someone here!

The IEEE AUTOTESTCON Walter E. Peterson Award is presented each year to the best paper on technical topics at AUTOTESTCON. It is awarded in honor of Mr. Peterson and perpetuates his technical leadership, interest and inspiration in the introduction and utilization of new and advanced technology in the design and manufacture of automated test systems. The award includes a plaque and a cash prize of $1,000. 

The IEEE AUTOTESTCON David M. Goodman Best Paper Award for Management Topics recognizes the many contributions made by the late Dr. Goodman for his encouragement of management concepts and theory in the ATE environment. The award includes a plaque and a cash prize of $1,000. Mr. Goodman is also the creator of the Government-Industry Data Exchange Program (GIDEP) in 1959 that exists today and serves as a cooperative activity between government and industry participants seeking to reduce or eliminate expenditures of resources by sharing technical information. 

The Best Student Paper Award was designated the Oscar W. Sepp Award in 2016 in memory of long-time AUTOTESTCON contributor Oscar W. Sepp. Oscar chaired AUTOTESTCON in 1982 and as Conference chairman was responsible for formalizing the Exhibits Program. In addition to his contributions to AUTOTESTCON Oscar held numerous patents ranging from the flip-top toothpaste cap to aircraft escape systems and parachutes for many applications including nuclear weapons.   In 1981 he was appointed USAF SPO Director for Support Equipment.  He also later served in executive positions in industry including running his own consulting company for many years.  His many industry and military awards included the McGinnis Memorial Award conferred by the AUTOTESTCON Board in 1984 and the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics Support Systems Award presented at AUTOTESTCON 1985. The Oscar W. Sepp Best Student Paper award is sponsored by IEEE Instrumentation and Measurement Society, who also provide travel grants to selected AUTOTESTCON student contributors. Best Student Paper Award winners are expected to be present at the Awards Ceremony, otherwise they may forfeit the award.

NDIA Automatic Test Committee

The John Slattery Professional Achievement Award is sponsored by the Automatic Test Committee of the Systems Engineering Division of the National Defense Industrial association (NDIA) and honors the memory of John Slattery, a long-time employee of the General Dynamics Electronics (GDE) Company, based in San Diego, California, for his professional contributions to the advancement of automatic testing via Automatic Test Equipment (ATE). It is presented annually to an individual who has made major contributions to improving the state of automated testing in support of the national security posture of the United States, including outstanding technical achievements, demonstrated technical innovation, contributions to ATE technology, participation in ATE industry/government peer groups, an enthusiasm and eagerness to provide mentoring, uncompromised ethics and professionalism, and contributions to the industry that reflect technical excellence, competence and integrity, and an unswerving desire to achieve technical success regardless of political or management considerations.

The AUTOTESTCON Recognition for Technical Innovation is awarded for a technical paper presented at the conference and published in the conference record that demonstrates outstanding innovation in a field-of-interest related to automatic test technology or system readiness. For the purpose of this
recognition, “innovation” is broadly defined to include significant advances in hardware, software, processes, services, or other technologies or methodologies. It recognizes novel ideas that are practical and have been implemented with successful results.


The paper must be presented at the conference and must appear in the conference record. The author or authors need not be IEEE members.


The conference technical committee shall select from among the technical papers submitted to the conference record a slate of not more than four (4) finalists for review by the AUTOTESTCON Board of Directors at their meeting preceding the conference, who will make the final selection. The selection criteria includes:
– Novelty and uniqueness of the idea behind the innovation
– Is the innovation an incremental improvement over the state-of-the art or is it a significant
change that disrupts the status quo
– Did the innovation meet an unmet need
– Significance of the innovation to AUTOTESTCON technical fields-of-interest
– Impact of the innovation on system readiness
– Benefit of the innovation to the military/aerospace community
– Evidence that the innovation has been implemented with successful results


The AUTOTESTCON Recognition for Technical Innovation is a non-monetary award consisting of a certificate presented to the author or authors during the awards ceremony at the conference by the AUTOTESTCON Board Chair or Vice-Chair.


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