VU awards Albert Chen honorary doctorate - External Relations
VU awards Albert Chen honorary doctorate
December 14, 2020
VINCENNES, Ind. – Vincennes University awarded an Honorary Doctor of
Business degree to Albert Chen, the founder and executive chairman of
one of the largest private companies in Indiana, during the
University’s Mid-Year Virtual Commencement on Dec. 12.
Chen is the founder of the Telamon Corporation headquartered in
Carmel, Indiana. Telamon operates globally in 48 states nationwide
with international locations spanning three continents. Telamon
Corporation’s mission is to “enable connectivity that enables life”.
In today’s ever-evolving digital world, Telamon leads the pack by
designing, building, and installing telecommunication networks
enabling connectivity in all forms, from traditional mobile phone
usage and connectivity in stadiums, hospitals, and, schools, all the
way down to connected safety in our cars with the industrial
manufacturing of wire harnesses for airbag and seatbelt applications.
Chen received the honorary degree for his outstanding leadership and
tremendous commitment to advancing innovative technology, business,
intercultural and international relationships, and higher education.
"Mr. Chen is most deserving of VU's highest recognition because
of his decades-long service to the people of Indiana in both business
and public service arenas,” VU Board of Trustees Chair John Stachura
said. “His philosophy in business and in life is a great example for
current VU students and alumni."
VU’s honorary degrees are bestowed upon notable individuals in
recognition of their achievements, life experiences, or humanitarian
efforts. More than
140 honorary degrees have been awarded since 1952.
“When I received the call from Dr. (Chuck) Johnson advising VU will
offer me an honorary doctoral degree, I was surprised and speechless,”
Chen said. “I was thinking to myself, “Am I really qualified to
receive this degree from the oldest university in Indiana?”
Telamon is the Greek word for support.
In addition to his business success, Chen is a champion of enhancing
international relationships, particularly between Indiana and Asia. He
is a great supporter of organizations throughout the state, including
many that support intercultural and international relationships in
Asia and China. Chen has dedicated his vision, leadership, talent, and
energy to supporting Hoosiers, the state of Indiana, and VU.
Chen arrived in the United States from Taiwan in 1968. He is a
graduate of Dartmouth College’s Minority Business Executive Program.
He also received an M.S. in Mathematical Sciences from Portland State
University and an LL.B. from National Cheng-Chi University in Taiwan.
He was awarded an honorary doctoral degree in 2017 from his alma
mater, Portland State University.
Chen founded Telamon in 1985. It has grown to a $770 million company
with more than 2,000 employees in 2019.
Telamon and VU have cultivated a partnership that is introducing the
use of collaborative robots (cobots) in advanced manufacturing and
other industries in Indiana. Through Chen’s leadership, VU forged a
four-way partnership with Lunghwa University in Taiwan, Techman
Cobots, and the Telamon Corporation that will lead to workforce
programming and curriculum development. It is because of Chen’s
generosity that VU has acquired three Techman Cobots that are now
deployed in the University’s Gene Haas Training Center in Lebanon, Indiana.
“After a 30-year business career, we began considering the field of
technological applications used in manufacturing for small – to
medium-sized companies, since the United States’ manufacturing
processes lagged behind Europe and Asia,” Chen said. “This sparked my
passion and desire for helping the state of Indiana to upgrade our
smart manufacturing skill set. I was aware of VU’s solid foundation of
helping Indiana manufacturers, students, and the workforce. After I
visited VU to discuss my ideas, I was impressed by VU’s friendliness
and eagerness to work with a private company. The impression led me to
pursue the Telamon-VU partnership. I aspire to help VU contribute to
their future expansion and accelerate the upgrading of Indiana’s workforce.”
The values of honesty, harmony, simplicity, and stewardship are
cornerstones of how Telamon does business. They are also evident in
Chen’s community engagement.
Chen founded a pair of non-profit organizations. The Asian American
Alliance (AAAI) trains Asian Americans for leadership positions. The
America China Society of Indiana (ACSI) focuses on building trade
relationships between Indiana and China.
He has served on boards for the International Center of Indianapolis,
Indiana University School of Informatics, Butler University, Purdue
University’s Burton D. Morgan Center for Entrepreneurship, Rose
International, and Commissioner for Indiana Integrated Public Safety Commission.
Chen currently serves on the board of the Lingnan Foundation and Old
National Bank Center for Business Excellence at Butler University.
His many awards include: The Best of Tech in Indiana - Corporate
Innovator of the Year, National Minority Supplier Development Council
Clarion Award, AT&T Success Partner Medallion, Cisco Best Diverse
Supplier Award, Junior Achievement Indiana Business Hall of Fame
Inductee, and the State of Indiana’s highest award, Sagamore of The Wabash