R.K. Viswanadham, known to his friends and colleagues as Vis, came to the US in 1968. After successfully obtaining MS and PhD degrees from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in 1970 and 1973, he worked as a Research Associate in the Department of Materials Science at Cornell University during 1973-75. During the next forty years he worked in a variety of industries including aerospace, oil & gas drilling, tooling, mining, permanent magnets, and an aluminum R&D consortium. He organized and chaired the First International Conference on the Science of Hard Materials in Jackson Lake, Wyoming in 1981. During his career he held many positions such as Research Scientist, Staff Scientist, Chief Scientist, Chief Metallurgist, Manager R&D, VP R&D and VP Engineering. In addition to his focus on hard materials, superhard materials and their composites, he has also worked on a variety of other materials systems such as steels, aluminum alloys, copper alloys, intermetallic composites, and polymers.