Dilhar first - ever Asian to receive UHCL Alumni top award

Founder and Chief Technology Officer of Atlink Communications Inc. Dilhar Mihidu De Silva has been selected to receive the 2008 Distinguished Alumni Award from the University of Houston, Clear Lake, United States of America.

The award, which is the top honour presented annually to UHCL graduates, recognises those who have made significant contributions to society and whose accomplishments and careers have brought credit to the institution. He is the only Asian to receive 'The Distinguished Alumni Award' in the history of the university, for his outstanding achievements in the field of information and communication technology.

Dilhar has served on the Board of Directors of the UHCL Alumni Association from 2002 to 2003. He currently serves as CTO of Atlink Communications Inc., a leading Houston based Enterprise Voice Integration (EVI) software company.

His contribution on Unified Modeling Language (UML) has been equally impressive. UML is a standardized visual language used to design, analyze and construct software and is supported by major software companies such as IBM, Oracle, HP and Unisys. Dilhar is one of eight industry leaders who invented and specified this language, which has now evolved to be the industry standard for Software Modeling and Architectures.

Dilhar is the US Patent Inventor for "Method and Apparatus for round trip software engineering", and has been awarded an "O" classified Visa in December 1999 for his abilities which have been demonstrated by sustained national acclaim.

Dilhar's efforts to serve his communities have commanded attention and respect from many spheres. He served as the President of the Sri Lankan American Association of Houston and mentors (Computer Science and Computer Information Systems) students through UHCL graduate capstone projects.

He is also an active member of I-FREED, an innovative non-profit organization which helps underprivileged people in Sri Lanka. Dilhar was involved in brainstorming and planning initiatives to counter the effects of the December 2004 tsunami and was instrumental in organizing the successful 'Run for Tsunami Relief' which raised around $35,000 to support the tsunami-affected.

A student of Royal College, Colombo, Dilhar was exemplary and displayed leadership qualities from his young days, serving as a Lower School, Middle School and Upper School Prefect. He excelled in sports, making waves in athletics and swimming at a national level. Dilhar played for his College Under 19 cricket team, which was acclaimed as the Best All Island Cricket Team in 1986. He is the son of Malkanthi and Takari de Silva.

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