Engineering alumnus and professor earn Ontario Professional Engineers Awards


Western Engineering News | April 9, 2020

The Ontario Society of Professional Engineers (OSPE) and Professional Engineers Ontario (PEO) recently announced the annual Ontario Professional Engineers Awards (OPEA) recipients, recognizing industry innovators and business leaders for their excellence and achievement in engineering.

Western Engineering alumnus and President of Zibi Canada Jeff Westeinde, BESc’89, PEng, earned the Engineering Medal for Entrepreneurship, and Electrical and Computer Engineering Professor and NSERC/UNENE Senior Industrial Research Chair Jing Jiang earned the Research and Development Medal. Both recipients will be honoured at the OPEA Gala in November 2020.

“It’s extremely encouraging to see members of the Western Engineering community receive such recognition for their continued innovation and dedication to their craft,” said Engineering Dean Ken Coley. “On behalf of the Faculty, I extend my congratulations to Jeff and Jing on these well-deserved honours.”

With THEIA Partners, Westeinde is developing Zibi, an ambitious $1.7 billion real estate development project in the heart of Canada’s Capital. Zibi is one of the world’s most sustainable mixed-use development projects, transforming 35 acres of contaminated industrial lands in the middle of the Ottawa River into one of the world’s most socially and environmentally sustainable communities.

“Western Engineering prepared me very well with both the technical skills required in the engineering field and more importantly the critical thinking that is required to be a successful entrepreneur,” said Westeinde. “Western continues to excel in engineering and business and I am thrilled to be recognized by the Ontario Professional Engineers with the Medal for Entrepreneurship.”

Westeinde acknowledged how fortunate he is to be one of the major investors and President of Zibi, “leading a group of the best placemakers on the planet in creating a truly outstanding community.”

Throughout his career and in his business and entrepreneurial endeavors, Westeinde has lead, mentored and coached young people, business leaders, engineers, armed forces personnel and indigenous community members.

Western Engineering Dean Ken Coley noted the overwhelming response he received from the community in support of Westeinde’s nomination and his work over the years.

“He has certainly demonstrated the initiative, energy and spirit it takes to seek out new ideas and to take a leading role in their promotion and implementation,” said Coley.

In 2018, Westeinde received Western Engineering’s L.S. Lauchland Engineering Alumni Medal for his outstanding contributions to the engineering profession, business leadership and community.

In addition to supporting and financing several ventures, Westeinde has successfully started, grown, merged and divested many companies over his career as an entrepreneurial engineering leader.

“Westeinde has consistently proven his ability to leverage engineering solutions for business opportunities as well as having the foresight and resolve to form businesses to solve engineering problems,” added Coley.

Dr. Jing Jiang has been with Western’s Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering for almost 30 years and is one of the longest-serving NSERC/UNENE Senior Industrial Research Chairs (IRC) in Canada in the area of Instrumentation, control, and electrical systems for nuclear power plants. Jiang works closely with Canadian industries on research and development, and he has helped to train a large number of HQPs for the industry.

As one of the longest serving IRCs, Jiang has established a world-class research program on instrumentation and control systems for nuclear power plants. He works closely with Canadian nuclear organizations through the University Network of Excellence in Nuclear Engineering (UNENE).

Jiang has spearheaded several groundbreaking research and development projects, including wireless sensor networks for nuclear power applications, where the effects of ionizing radiation on electronics are examined and adequate methods for protection are developed.

Being an International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) expert, Jiang was invited to conduct a training course on “Electric Grid Reliability and Interface with Nuclear Power Plants” in 2009, in Hanoi, Vietnam, and was commissioned to be on a mission to inspect and review the Advanced I&C Systems for APR 1400 nuclear power plants at Doosan Heavy Industry in 2010, in Korea.

The impact of Jiang’s fundamental research can be measured with over 11,000 citations, and of his 7 books and monographs, “Control of Nuclear Reactors” has become the prescribed textbook by the Chinese Ministry of Education.

“I am extremely honoured by this recognition,” said Jiang. “I would like to dedicate this medal to the former Dean of Engineering at Western, Founder and CEO of UNENE (University Network of Excellence in Nuclear Engineering), late Dr. Mohan Mathur, who inspired me to be the best that I can possibly be, who gave me a chance to work at Western Engineering, and who also supported my research activities through the UNENE. I would also like to pay tribute to all my colleagues, friends, and past, present graduate students and researchers whom I have privilege to work with and most importantly to learn from in my 30-year career. This medal is to be shared with those who have touched my life in many positive ways.”