2012 Ray Davies Lifetime Achievement Award Recipients

Photo of 2012 Recipients
Maria Marin, JB Wright Principal, Dr. Jim Gentile, CEO of Research Corporation, and Kathleen Perkins

Kathleen Perkins

Kathleen Perkins develops business plans for scientists worldwide: for their companies, their ideas and their accomplishments.

As an external adviser to European Union leaders, Kathleen focuses on photonics strategy and entrepreneurship aligned to specific cultures (a business plan for a Belgian or Japanese start-up may be technically similar to a US start-up; however, the administration and geo-political structures would be quite different).

Beginning her career in New York City's fashion sector first as a regional sales manager, then VP for Revlon, Kathleen shifted to the technology sector in 1992. Those early lessons in consumer markets and profitability underpin Kathleen's work with scientists so that the product's messaging relates to tiered audiences: venture capitalists, angel investors, peer scientists and most importantly, a mass audience.

Combining science with fashion, art and sustainability is the backbone of much of Kathleen's approach - to make science relevant and accessible to mass audiences, especially children. As former CEO of Breault Research, Kathleen worked throughout the global photonics industry representing rocket science software and services.

Ms. Perkins serves numerous boards:

  • Chair, Business Advisory Board,
  • Executive Board, University of Arizona, College of Science
  • Board, Southern Arizona Leadership Council,
  • Board, Society of International Photonics,
  • Personal interest and work in poverty, education and animal rights.

Kathleen's husband, John Schweyen, is an optical physicist working 30% of the year in Tokyo.

Research Corporation for Science Advancement

Research Corporation for Science Advancement

Tucson-based Research Corporation for Science Advancement is a private operating foundation that aids basic research in the sciences at U.S. colleges and universities, including the University of Arizona. It supports research independently proposed by college and university faculty members, convenes conferences and actively advocates for science advancement. RCSA is a strong supporter of science education both locally and nationally.

RCSA was launched in 1912 with a vision to support and build communities of young scientists with highly innovative ideas. During 2012 the foundation is celebrating that vision and the outcomes it has produced.

Throughout the past century RCSA has been characterized by programs and initiatives that blaze a trail where science is going. Consistently, RCSA has been willing to bet on young researchers and implement initiatives anticipating the direction of science. And RCSA has leveraged its relative small resources to catalyze big results.