John B. and Irene W. Goodenough Endowed Research Fund in Engineering
You’re probably within arm’s length of a John Goodenough invention. Goodenough, a mechanical engineering professor in UT’s Cockrell School of Engineering, helped launch the wireless revolution with his development of the rechargeable lithium-ion battery, that powers our mobile phones, laptop computers, iPods, and other portable electronic devices.
Goodenough, who turns 90 this summer, still teaches and still invents. He’s still dedicated to finding new ways to store energy, with an eye toward the U.S. achieving energy independence.
Honored in 2011 with the National Medal of Science and as the UT Austin Inventor of the Year, he has been honored in recent years with the Enrico Fermi Award, The Eric and Sheila Samson Prime Minister’s Prize for Innovation in Alternative Fuels for Transportation, given to paradigm-shifting research and global innovation, and recognition by his peers at the highest levels.
However, Goodenough has found that his inventions aren’t the only way he can change the world. He’s also a donor to the University, giving outright gifts and establishing charitable gift annuities to support a high-pressure lab at the Texas Materials Institute.
“When the faculty give, it shows that they believe in the institution,” he said. “I wanted to set an example.”
The John B. and Irene W. Goodenough Endowed Research Fund in Engineering was established by the Board of Regents of The University of Texas System on February 9, 2006, for the benefit of the Cockrell School of Engineering. Gift funds were provided by Mrs. Irene W. Goodenough of Austin, Texas and John B. Goodenough, Ph.D. of Austin, Texas.
Updated March 2019.