Initiated in 1985, the IEEE AUTOTESTCON Frank McGinnis Professional Achievement Award is given in the memory of the late Frank McGinnis of the Sperry Corporation, who was instrumental in bringing military automated test to the forefront of visibility for government and industry alike. Mr. McGinnis founded the Navy Ad Hoc ATE Project for the Navy in 1975, under National Security Industrial Association (NSIA) leadership, to examine and recommend to the Navy a program of research and development to help increase the competency levels of automated test. This led to a Joint Services ATE Project that started in 1978 and had a similar purpose, except the focus was tri-service. The culmination was the formation in late 1980 of the NSIA Automated Test Committee, a permanent activity to maintain a focus on military automated test. This activity is still vibrant and functioning, as a Committee of the National Defense Industrial Association (NDIA, successor to the NSIA) Systems Engineering Division.
The Professional Achievement Award was established in Frank McGinnis' memory and honor to recognize managers or professionals in the ATE industry who have demonstrated long-term leadership in the field. The award is presented at the AUTOTESTCON awards luncheon by the AUTOTESTCON Board Chair or Vice-Chair.
The Frank McGinnis Award is presented at AUTOTESTCON to recognize a career of outstanding leadership, individual initiative, and technical contributions in automated test engineering. Nominees must have demonstrated specified professional achievement and leadership over a career span, and participation in AUTOTESTCON.