Ramachandra (Rama) Ramakumar joined the faculty of OSU Electrical Engineering in 1967 after ten years of academic service in India including study leave on TCM scholarship at Cornell University, Ithaca, New York where he received his Ph.D. degree in 1962. He was fortunate to join a research group initiated by school head William Hughes working on renewable energy topics. Rama essentially stayed in that field for 52 continuous years until he retired in 2019 as Regents Professor, PSO/Albrecht Naeter Professor and Director of Engineering Energy Laboratory (EEL), all as emeritus.
Over the fifty plus years at OSU, Rama initiated the Frontiers of Power/Bill Hughes scholarship through OSU foundation administered by EEL and directed the annual Frontiers of Power Conference from 1987 to 2019. Also, through the OSU Foundation, he established the "Ramakumar Family Energy Scholarship" in 2010 with focus on renewable energy. Internationally, he established through the IEEE Foundation the annual "IEEE-PES Ramakumar Family Renewable Energy Excellence Award" in 2011 administered by the IEEE Power and Energy Society.
All through his five decades plus career at OSU, wife Gokula has been a constant source of encouragement and help. To commemorate his legacy at OSU and Gokula's vital role, he has taken steps to name the second floor ECE west seminar room in the renovated Engineering South building as "Rama & Gokula Ramakumar Seminar Room."