This fund, named in honor of alumnus Alexander “Alex” Nicholas Brown, supports graduate students that embody Alex’s fearless pursuit of innovation, superior leadership, and persistent drive.

Alexander Brown was a Graduate Research Assistant at the National Institute of Aerospace (NIA) in July 2008 after he compled his undergraduate studies at the University of Maryland. He was awarded a masters degree in December 2010 and stayed to pursue his Ph.D. in aerospace engineering.

His work was innovative and involved using small synthetic jet arrays to control and modify the boundary layer on wings. In this role he worked in collaboration with the Physics and Controls Branch at NASA Langley. In short, he was part of a forward-thinking team exploring ways to make the next generation of aerospace vehicles more efficient and safer. More details about Alex and his work can be found on the morpheus website. Alex was awarded the NIA Martin L. Drews Scholarship for his outstanding research and leadership.

Alex was well known for his energy and great leadership potential. He was optimistic and upbeat, even under intense pressure, he radiated the positive feelings that created resonance. Alex Brown knew that coming together was just a beginning, that staying together was progress, and working together created success.  He inspired others through courage and hope and encouraged others to continue the quest for success and innovation. Alex Brown was a leader who leaves behind him in others the conviction and the will to carry on. Alex Brown was a superior leader. He epitomized the idea of leadership that was described by the great Chinese philosopher Lao-Tzu, who said:

Superior leaders get things done with very little motion. They impart instruction not through many words, but through a few deeds. They keep informed about everything but interfere hardly at all. They are catalysts, and though things would not get done as well if they were not there, when they succeed they take no credit. And, because they take no credit, credit never leaves them.

Learn more about Alex's life and work.