The Dr. Carol Espy-Wilson STEM Scholarship Initiative in honor of Dr. Roderic I. Pettigrew ‘72

About Dr. Carol Espy-Wilson

Dr. Carol Espy-Wilson is a Professor in the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department and the Institute for Systems Research at the University of Maryland (UMD).  She received her B.S. degree in Electrical Engineering from Stanford University, and the M.S., E.E. and Ph.D. degrees in Electrical Engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Dr. Espy-Wilson is the Director of the Speech Communication Laboratory at UMD where she has an active research program with undergraduate, graduate and postdoctoral students.  Her lab explores the integration of engineering, linguistics and speech acoustics to study speech communication.  Her research involves modeling speech production, studying speech perception, developing digital signal processing techniques that extract relevant information from speech, and using that information and the knowledge gained to develop automatic speech recognition systems, automatic speaker recognition systems, assistive technology and other types of speech-related devices. Her research has generated significant funding from the National Science Foundation (NSF), the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and the Department of Defense. Dr. Espy-Wilson has authored or coauthored with her students and colleagues numerous papers in journals and conference proceedings, and she has written several book chapters.  She teaches undergraduate and graduate courses in electrical engineering. 

Dr. Espy-Wilson’s awards and honors include being elected as a Fellow of the Acoustical Society of America, the Clare Boothe Luce Professorship, a Career Award from NIH, a Radcliffe Fellowship from Harvard, and the Distinguished Scholar-Teacher Award at the University of Maryland.  She is actively engaged in the Acoustical Society of America where she currently serves as an Associate Editor of the Journal of the Acoustical Society of America.   She is a senior member of the Institute for Electrical and Electronic Engineers where she has served as an elected member of the Speech and Language technical committee.  Dr. Espy-Wilson was recently appointed to the Advisory Council of the National Institute of Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering at NIH and has served in other capacities at NIH and NSF.

Dr. Espy-Wilson founded OmniSpeech LLC in November 2009 to develop technology for communication devices (mobile phones, first-responder radios, hearing aids, etc.) to improve the clarity of speech in everyday noisy environments.  She has won or raised over $3.2M from NSF through their Small Business Innovation Research Program, NIH through their Small Technology Transfer Research Program,  and Angel Investment.  OmniSpeech currently has 7 full-time employees and 1 part-time administrator.

Dr. Espy-Wilson is married to John Silvanus Wilson Jr., President of Morehouse College and they have twin daughters and a son.