Visionary, Inventor, Entrepreneur
Monumental Achievement: Emilio Fernandez is an accomplished inventor, holding 28 patents across various fields. One of his most notable patents defined key elements of e-reading devices and became the most cited US patent at the time. While pursuing his undergraduate studies, Fernandez co-founded Pulse Electronics, a leading global provider of electronic products and digital solutions for the rail industry. He is retired vice chairman of the Board of Directors of Wabtec, Managing Director of Pulse Capital LLC, and serves on numerous corporate, philanthropic and cultural boards.
Emilio Fernandez is retired vice chairman of the Board of Directors of Wabtec, a Fortune 500 company, Managing Director of Pulse Capital LLC, a private investment group, and former CEO and co-founder of Pulse Electronics, Inc.
Mr. Fernandez’s success as an inventor and entrepreneur stems from his belief in the value and permanency of education. He graduated in 1969 from the University of Maryland with a Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering and went on to obtain a Master’s Degree in Engineering Management from the George Washington University.
While in his senior year at UMD he co-founded Pulse Electronics, along with classmate Angel Bezos. The Company went on to produce electronic monitors and control systems for the railroads. Pulse continued to grow after it was acquired by Wabtec, and today the group is the leading World-wide provider of electronic products and digital solutions for the Rail Industry.
Since then, Fernandez has established several new ventures covering a broad technological spectrum, and has also devoted significant time to those starting their first company. Mr. Fernandez has been an early-stage investor in many startup companies, and has been awarded 28 patents across various fields. One particular patent defined key elements of e-reading devices such as the Kindle and became the most cited US patent at the time.
Mr. Fernandez has served on many corporate, philanthropic and cultural boards, including the Board of the Foundation for a Creative America, the Hispanic Leadership Council, the Board of Trustees of the George Washington University, as Chairman of the George Washington Medical Center, the Hispanic Business College Fund, Inc., the Board of Trustees of the University of Maryland College Park Foundation, Inc., the Board of the Smithsonian Institution Washington Council, the Board of the National Museum of American History, the Stevens Institute of Technology Board of Trustees, and the Board of Visitors of the A. James Clark School of Engineering. He is also founding chairman of the Clark School's Fearless Ideas: The Campaign for Maryland.
Over his years of service he has been recognized with countless awards by the universities and groups that he has influenced. At the University of Maryland he was awarded the Centennial Medal, and was inducted into the A. James Clark School of Engineering Hall of Fame. He was also presented the University’s Distinguished Alumnus Award and most recently the Glenn L. Martin Medal. At the George Washington University, Fernandez was awarded the Distinguished Alumni Achievement Award and was inducted into the School of Engineering and Applied Science Hall of Fame.