Honorary Degrees

N.B.: The detail displayed about each honorary degree recipient varies, as the database was compiled from a variety of sources. However, more information may be available at the University Archives.

Name: Don Bateman
Convocation date: June 3, 2014
Citation / biographical information:

Don Bateman is a corporate fellow and chief engineer-technologist for Flight Safety Systems and Technology in Advanced Technology Engineering for Honeywell in Redmond, Washington State. He heads a small team of scientists and engineers.

Don was born in Saskatoon and graduated from the University of Saskatchewan with the degree Bachelor of Science in Engineering - Electrical Engineering. Don's interest in aviation began at the age of five when his father took him to a "barnstormer" air show in the summer of 1937. Later as a youngster, he would pedal his bicycle to the airport to watch young Canadian Air Force recruits trying to obtain their flying wings in de Havilland Tiger Moths.

His first flight was a ride in a war-time de Havilland "Mosquito" and he forever became an
addict to flying. Later in life he would get his own "wings" from the FAA, and followed
through with an Instrument rating and accumulated 2,100 flight hours of experience. He
went to work for Boeing on the B-707 as a young avionic system designer and then moved to a small "start-up" company that eventually became Honeywell. Don is still employed today with 53 years of service with the same company.

As a child, Don witnessed a mid-air collision of two military training planes, leaving an indelible impression. In 1956 he became interested in flight safety accidents and became a pioneer in developing many flight instruments and systems.

Don is primarily recognized for developing and championing critical flight-safety sensors now used by aircraft worldwide, including ground proximity warning systems and wind-shear detection systems. Don and his colleagues have developed many aircraft instruments and safety devices for aircraft, and Don has been the recipient of many flight safety awards.

Don holds more than 50 U.S. patents in the field of flight safety and was inducted into the National Inventors Hall of Fame in 2005. In 2007, the University of Saskatchewan honoured Don with the Alumni Association Award and named him one of the 100 Alumni of Influence, the latter as part of the university’s Centennial activities. In 2011, Don was inducted into the Saskatchewan Aviation Hall of Fame, was inducted into the University of Saskatchewan’s Engineering Wall of Distinction and was the guest lecturer at the C.J. Mackenzie Gala of Engineering Excellence. That same year he also received the U.S. Presidential Medal for Technology and Innovation from President Obama, the highest honour bestowed by the U.S. government on scientists, engineers and inventors.

Don is a Royal Aeronautical Society Fellow and a member of the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics. Don and his wife, Mary, reside near Seattle; they have five children and seven grandchildren.
Degree received: Doctor of Science
Degree presented by: Aaron Phoenix

Return to main list: by date | by name