University News

Retirement Reception Set for Tom Bridge

April 30, 2008

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MACOMB, IL -- A retirement reception for Tom Bridge, chair of Western Illinois University's department of engineering technology, will be held Tuesday, May 6. Bridge will retire on July 31 after 31 years of service.

The reception will be held from 4-6 p.m. in the University Union Lamoine Room. A short program will begin at 5 p.m. Members of the Macomb and campus communities are welcome to attend.

Bridge joined Western's faculty as an assistant professor in 1977 and was named department chair in 1985. During his tenure he developed, and currently directs, the graphic communication, construction management and manufacturing engineering technology majors. Prior to coming to WIU, Bridge worked for the Ford Motor Company as a zone manager and an administrative manager. He was also a member of the Peace Corps, serving in Colombia; and he served in Okinawa, Japan with the U.S. Army.

Over the years, Bridge has obtained numerous grants for fuel training; adult and vocational education; and faculty development. He has published articles for professional publications and presented at several professional conferences. Bridge is a Certified Manufacturing Engineer and has been recognized with an Award of Merit from the Society of Manufacturing Engineers. He has also been honored with the University's Exceptional Service Award for Advancement of Affirmative Action Goals (1994) and a Faculty Excellence Award (1985) and the National Faculty Adviser Award from the Society of Manufacturing Engineers (SME) (1985).

He has been a member of SME for more than 25 years, serving on the executive board of
Regions 6 and 10 and several regional and national committees. He also served as chair for the Illinois Joint Staff of Technology Educators and as an elected member of the Mississippi Valley Industrial Education Conference. Bridge served as president and treasurer of the Illinois Association of Cooperative Education and chair of the Illinois Power Mechanics Teachers Association. In the community he has been active in the Rotary Club and is a co-founder and past-president of the Habitat for Humanity of McDonough County chapter. He is the past president of the Habitat for Humanity for Illinois State Support Organization Board.

Bridge received his doctorate from the University of Missouri and his master's and bachelor's degrees from Illinois State University.

Posted By: Darcie Shinberger (
Office of University Communications & Marketing