Richard D. Filley is the founding director of the Engineering Projects in Community Service (EPICS) Program at Arizona State University. EPICS students have already won several national awards (including the 2012 Microsoft U.S. Imagine Cup and Entrepreneur Magazine's '2011 College Entrepreneur of the Year) for their innovation and fresh technology-based approaches to social entrepreneurship. Open to all ASU undergraduate students, the program has three elements: 1. EPICS GOLD and EPICS Turquoise, a sequence of experiential learning classes that form multi-discliplinary undergraduate student teams with local, national, and international not-for-profit organizations, schools and government agencies to address real world social challenges and issues using technology; 2. EPICS Maroon Club, a community service club for ASU students partnering with the Valley of the Sun United Way, City of Phoenix and other organizations; 3. EPICS High School, including award-winning student teams from Xavier College Prep High School.
Prior to this he served as the director of the ASU Corporate Leaders Program, which he founded in 1986. Filley joined ASU in 1985, and before that, served as an international magazine editor where he authored over 50 magazine articles. Early in his career he worked as an industrial engineer in the aerospace industry for Boeing, Garrett AiResearch and Sperry Flight Systems. An entrepreneur at heart, Filley launched his own company in the 1980s and also worked for an inventor as an undergraduate engineering student.
In 2002 he spent six months on sabbatical at RMIT University with his family in Melbourne, Australia. Filley travels overseas frequently, and has spoken in 22 countries. His volunteer and community service activities include terms as president of the Marc Center (Mesa, Arizona), the ASU University Club, and the Rio Salado Rowing Club (which he co-founded in 1991). He is a member of Valley Leadership Class X, and served several terms on the national board of directors of the American Association of University Administrators.
The successes of two high tech student community service programs he founded have been recognized: In 2002 with an award (presented to him by Nobel Peace Prize Laureaute F.W. de Klerk) from the United Way International at their annual conference, held in Cape Town, South Africa. Also, in 1996, when Dick was selected as a “community hero” by the Valley of the Sun United Way and given the chance to carry the Olympic torch as it passed through the Valley headed for Atlanta.