Jill M. Hruby

Vice President for Energy, Nonproliferation and High-Consequence Security and International, Homeland and Nuclear Security Program, Sandia National Laboratories
BSME '81

In recognition of her distinguished leadership in research, engineering and development of national security technology and administration

When Jill Hruby began as a student at Purdue in the 1970s, she had a love of math, so she decided to major in it. But spending time on a campus filled with so many engineers turned her head.

"After meeting so many engineering students, I decided that perhaps engineering was a more practical outlet to my love of math," says the Ann Arbor, Mich., native, so she switched her major to mechanical engineering.

Being a woman in a STEM discipline at that time was not easy — as some courses had only two or three women — but with the completion of each new semester, Hruby not only gained knowledge but a belief in herself.

"During the first two years at Purdue, I became much more confident in my ability," Hruby says. "I learned that even though there were 1,000 other smart people in the same class, I was able to do well."

The confidence she developed at Purdue undoubtedly helped her thrive in her field.

Today, Hruby leads more than 1,300 employees and contractors at Sandia National Laboratories in Albuquerque, N.M. She is vice president over the Energy, Nonproliferation and High-Consequence Security Division, which supports Sandia's global security of weapons of mass destruction, energy systems and the nuclear fuel cycle. In addition, Hruby is Sandia's vice president over the International, Homeland and Nuclear Security Strategic Management Unit. The unit handles nonproliferation and arms control, and secures and safeguards nuclear weapons and materials.

Before coming to Sandia, Hruby worked briefly at the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. She began her career with Sandia in California, where she was most recently director of Homeland Security and Defense Systems. She was also director for materials and engineering sciences, where she was responsible for materials research and development and microsystem fabrication and performance. While at Sandia, Hruby has been involved with nanoscience research, hydrogen storage, solar energy research, microfluidics, and the thermal analysis of mechanical-component design.

Hruby is a charter member of Sandia's Executive Diversity Council, has served on the National Academy of Sciences Board of Chemical Science and Technology and has been an executive board member of the Livermore Chamber of Commerce. She has three patents in microfabrication and an R&D 100 award in solid-state radiation detection. In 2008 she received a Purdue outstanding mechanical engineering alumna award. She was named a "Woman Worth Watching" for 2013 by Profiles in Diversity Journal. Sandia's Women's Committee also named her an Outstanding Role Model.

Career Highlights

2010-present Vice President for Energy, Nonproliferation and High-Consequence Security, and International, Homeland and Nuclear Security Program, Sandia National Laboratories (SNL), Albuquerque, N.M.
2005–2010 Director of Homeland Security Programs, SNL, Livermore, Calif.
2003–2005 Director of Materials and Engineering Sciences Program, SNL, Livermore
1983 MS in mechanical engineering, University of California at Berkeley
1981 Scientist, Sandia National Laboratories, Livermore, Calif.
1981 BSME, Purdue University