President Barack Obama has named Benjamin Williams of the University of California, Los Angeles, as a recipient of the Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers (PECASE). President Barack Obama joins PECASE recipients for a group photo in the White House. Courtesy of the White House/Lawrence Jackson. Williams has worked to advance terahertz quantum-cascade lasers and devices for communications, sensing and imaging, as well as to enhance undergraduate and graduate student learning experiences. PECASE recognizes scientists and engineers who show exceptional potential for leadership at the frontiers of scientific knowledge. Winners demonstrate the ability to broadly advance fundamental research and help the United States maintain its position as a leading producer of scientists and engineers. This year, 21 nominations were made by the National Science Foundation.