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Memorial Tributes, Volume 14
to the development and design of commercial jet aircraft. He subsequently served on nine different committees for the Academy.
Cosgrove was honored in 1983 by the Society of Aviation and Space Technology for his role in converting the Boeing 767 transport design from a three-man to a two-man cockpit configuration. In 1988 he received the Collier Award for significant contributions to aviation propulsion technology. And in 1988 the Society of Automotive Engineers awarded him the prestigious Franklin W. Kolk Award for development of the technologies used in the current family of airplanes. In 1989 the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA) awarded him the Ed Wells Technical Management Award for his efforts in addressing issues related to aging aircraft. In 1991 he received the annual Design News Magazine Special Achievement Award for his contributions to the industry.
Cosgrove was a member of the Society of Automotive Engineers Aerospace Council, the Daniel Guggenheim Medal Board, and the American Society of Mechanical Engineers Industry Advisory Board and was a fellow of both the AIAA and the Royal Aeronautical Society.
Benjamin Cosgrove was a legend both in the industry and at Boeing. He expected a great deal from his people, and his colleagues, and he motivated and inspired many an engineer. He was a structures guy through and through, and he never let anyone forget that structural design is the backbone of a successful airplane. He insisted on integrity and ethical behavior from his employees. He also worried about overdependence on computers. He instilled in all engineers the notion that understanding must be grounded in fundamentals and engineering principles and that good judgment was always the guide. His advice was: “Hold your fire until you know your business.”
Cosgrove is survived by his wife, Virginia, and five children.