Dr. Clark Beck was inducted to the Walk of Fame in 2014 for his contributions to aerospace engineering research at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, his teaching career at Wright State University, Central State University, and Sinclair Community College, and also for the development of the Wright STEPP program (for Science, Technology Pre-College Program) for engineering students. Included in his research at WPAFB, was testing of military structures and equipment for use in the Space Shuttle.
Clark was one of the first two African-American engineering graduates from the University of Cincinnati in 1955, and also holds an honorary doctorate of science from UC. He helped establish the Pioneers Scholarship Fund, and has contributed to the Minority Engineering Program and the Darwin T. Turner Scholarship Fund at UC. He is a fellow of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers, the National Society of Professional Engineers, and the Society for Technical Communication. He is also the founding president of the Kidney Foundation of Dayton, and has lived for the past 45 years with a kidney transplant.
Clark designed and started the Wright STEPP program in 1988 with forty 7th grade Dayton Public School students, with a mission to enhance the development and education of under-represented youths in the fields of engineering, math, and science. The Wright STEPP program is Wright State University's Science, Technology, and Engineering Preparatory Program (STEPP). The program grew to add 8th, 9th, and 10th grade classes, and over the past 30 years the program has provided over a thousand needy students with adequate academic preparation to earn a bachelor degree in the STEM courses. More than one hundred of them have earned PhD’s. Wright STEPP graduates are not only engineers, but doctors, nurses, lawyers, scientists, teachers, professors, principals, Directors of Curriculum and Instruction, etc.
Clark is also a long time trustee on the board of Aviation Trail, Inc. So it is quite fitting that Clark’s Walk of Fame stone is placed on Williams Street, adjacent to the Aviation Trail Visitor Center and Dayton Aviation Heritage National Historical Park.
See more on the Dayton Region Walk of Fame at http://www.daytonwalkoffame.citymax.com/history.html