Atg Logo Vector
Single Article Template

Announcing the Walter McFall Memorial Research Fund

In honor of Walter McFall’s many years of outstanding service to the Society of Women Engineers, of his efforts to advance women in engineering, and of his commitment to diversifying the profession, SWE is pleased to announce the establishment of the Walter McFall Memorial Research Fund. This fund is both a fitting tribute to his legacy and a significant step toward fulfilling his vision of a truly diverse engineering profession.
Announcing the Walter McFall Memorial Research Fund - Walter McFall

A regular presenter and attendee at SWE conventions, as they were once called, and at WE conferences, Walter McFall is shown above with then-SWE Executive Director and CEO Betty Shanahan, F.SWE, at WE10 in Chicago. His 41-year career at Argonne National Laboratory began in basic and applied research and grew to include human resources and engineering and scientific recruitment. As a role model and mentor, he encouraged countless women and minority students who went on to establish successful engineering careers. McFall died Aug. 26, 2021, in Chicago.

Donations to this fund will support SWE’s efforts to create and pilot a new yearlong program to encourage undergraduate women studying at historically Black colleges and universities and Hispanic-serving institutions to pursue STEM graduate degrees. SWE will study the impact of the pilot program, and research findings will be presented at relevant conferences and in Society publications such as the SWE research website, SWE Magazine, and the All Together blog, making the information widely available to the public.

 Findings published in the State of Women in Engineering issue of SWE Magazine will be designated as the Walter McFall Memorial Research Paper, acknowledging that this research will help broaden understanding of the unique experiences of women of color in engineering, help SWE better support women of color, and lead to more effective programs to increase diversity in the profession.

In recognition of his work to support and champion women in engineering and science, McFall received SWE’s Rodney D. Chipp Memorial Award in 1997. He was the longest-serving member of the SWE editorial board, stepping down in 2017 following 20 years on the board.

To contribute, please see the SWE donation page: then select “Available Funds,” and the Walter McFall Memorial Research Fund will be the last one on the list.

To learn more about McFall’s life, please visit SWE Magazine (  as well as Chicago Sun Times .


  • SWE Blog

    SWE Blog provides up-to-date information and news about the Society and how our members are making a difference every day. You’ll find stories about SWE members, engineering, technology, and other STEM-related topics.