SME Announces 2021 Award of Merit Honorees

SME has announced that Hwa-Soo Lee, PhD, LSME, CMfgE, and Matthew Clegg are its 2021 SME Award of Merit recipients. Lee is a professor specializing in manufacturing at Nihon University in Tokyo. Clegg is a marine equipment designer for Manson Construction Co. in Seattle.

Lee was selected for his valued contributions to SME Japan Chapter 180, where he functions as the certification officer. His ongoing efforts have led to more than 1,700 applicants successfully achieving the organization’s Certified Manufacturing Engineer (CMfgE) and Certified Manufacturing Technologist (CMfgT) designations between 1994 and 2020.

Clegg is being recognized for his achievements as the chair of SME Seattle Chapter 39. While in the position, he established a goal for the chapter to regain its platinum chapter status, which requires success in categories of effective communication, interaction with local manufacturing, leadership development and development of best practices.

After working in industry as a machine tool engineer for Amada Co., Lee joined academia at Sophia University, one of the top-three private research universities in Japan, and at Nihon University. During his career, he has contributed extensively to research on machine tool vibration. He also has invested significantly in mentoring students and emerging engineers in the manufacturing industry.

Clegg, a graduate of Central Washington University with degrees in industrial engineering and music performance, has an extensive background that includes SOLIDWORKS certification, additive manufacturing, laser scanning, reverse engineering, foundry, machining and marine design. As chair of SME Seattle Chapter 39, he worked with local colleges to strengthen their engineering programs, while supporting five SME student chapters and growing his professional SME chapter into one of the largest in the U.S.

SME’s Award of Merit has, since 1958, recognized exceptional accomplishments from among its membership. To nominate an outstanding SME member by the Aug. 1 deadline, click for eligibility requirements and nominating details.

About SME

SME connects manufacturing professionals, academia and communities, sharing knowledge and resources to build inspired, educated and prosperous manufacturers and enterprises. With nearly 90 years of experience and expertise in events, media, membership, training and development, and also through the SME Education Foundation, SME is committed to promoting manufacturing technology, developing a skilled workforce and attracting future generations to advance manufacturing. Learn more at

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