SENER President, Jorge Sendagorta, receives the Honorary Member's medal from the Spanish Institute of Engineering13/11/2018 (Spain)
The President of SENER, Jorge Sendagorta, has been awarded the Honorary Member's medal, which is granted by the Spanish Institute of Engineering (Instituto de Ingeniería de España, IIE), in its own words, “to engineering professionals who have contributed to advancing society through their work and projects.”
Jorge Sendagorta received the medal on Tuesday, November 13, at an award ceremony held in the auditorium of the Spanish Institute of Engineering (IIE) in Madrid. The medal was presented by the IIE's President, Carlos del Álamo Jiménez, following a laudatio delivered by the previous President of the IIE, Manuel Moreu. Together with Jorge Sendagorta, the Honorary Member's medal has also been presented to the President of Iberdrola, Ignacio Sánchez Galán.
The Spanish Institute of Engineering decided to give this distinction to Jorge Sendagorta after he was nominated by the Spanish Association of Naval and Ocean Engineers, in recognition of his professional career. According to the institution: “It's a prize to the engineer, but undoubtedly also to the engineering carried out at SENER, which is spearheading Spanish engineering around the world and in the most innovative sectors."
In his speech, SENER's President recalled his father, Enrique de Sendagorta, PhD in Naval Architecture and founder of SENER and the SENER Foundation, who was equally recognized in 2014, and his uncle, José Manuel de Sendagorta, PhD in Aeronautical Engineering, who co-founded SENER and was the President of the Spanish Institute of Engineering in 1965. The President of SENER noted that he inherited from both his vocation for engineering, “viewed as serving society, as devising solutions and projects that will result in better and more efficient vessels, infrastructures and industries, which will pave the way for the progress and well-being of everyone.”
Jorge Sendagorta alluded to the status of engineering in Spain, saying that: “In my lifetime, Spanish engineering has been able to advance from a somewhat backward position to a present in which we are clearly among the world's best in most engineering specialties.” Before pointing out that: “Part of this more favorable reality is due to the inertia from better times (...) when opportunities abounded in our domestic market. We cannot expect that inertia to keep us going for much longer. Spain must restore its effort in infrastructures and equipment as soon as possible. Otherwise, we will lose our advantage at this important juncture of competitiveness, and careers in engineering will keep receding." Jorge Sendagorta concluded his analysis on an upbeat note, saying, “Our industry is cyclical, but it has also become strong. Innovative, smart and sustainable actions by everyone, especially engineers and business owners, are making us better day by day and giving us hope not only nationally, but abroad as well."
In addition to thanking his family for their enduring support, and the professionals who have accompanied him throughout his career, he made special mention of the people at SENER, a company to which he has devoted "most of my career, which has been a huge privilege. SENER has always known how to bring great engineers and professionals from other necessary disciplines together, and then given us the freedom to develop ideas and initiatives. Working together and the shared desire to improve ourselves has enriched us as engineers and as people, made us better, made our company better, and I dare to say, it has also improved the society in which we live."
Jorge Sendagorta's professional career
Jorge Sendagorta has served as President of SENER, where he started working in 1986 as Deputy General Manager, since the year 2000. He also served as SENER’s first executive (CEO) until December 2017, when he reached the age of 65, following the rules of SENER’s Corporate Government. Under his oversight, the SENER engineering and technology group has employed 6,000 people and generated revenues in excess of 1,300 M€. It has also become an international benchmark for its ability to innovate.
Jorge Sendagorta continued to diversify SENER's engineering activities, in keeping with the principles of excellence, innovation and technological differentiation under which it was founded, driving the company's international expansion, especially in the 21st century, with offices in Algeria, Argentina, Brazil, Canada, South Korea, Chile, China, Colombia, United Arab Emirates, Spain, the United States, Morocco, Mexico, Poland, Portugal, the United Kingdom and South Africa.
Sendagorta earned his Ph.D. in Naval Architecture by Universidad Politécnica de Madrid (UPM), where he was also deputy professor in charge of two Ph.D. courses from 1978 through 1984. Jorge Sendagorta also has a M.Sc. degree in Ocean Engineering by M.I.T. (Cambridge, Massachusetts, USA) and completed his formal education by attending the Advanced Business Management Program (PADE for its Spanish acronym) at the IESE Business School in 1990.
Jorge Sendagorta's career has been recognized on several occasions with awards and distinctions, including being appointed an Honorary Fellow of the Spanish Official Association of Naval and Ocean Engineers (COIN) in 2018, his designation as an Ambassador of Bilbao by the Bilbao Chamber of Commerce in 2014, the "Lead to Grow" prize awarded by the Spanish Confederation of Managers and Executives (2011), and the Entrepreneur of the Year Award from Ernst&Young, the IESE business school, the Vocento Group and Fortis (2006).