IEEE Computer Society Awards

2009 | 2008


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2008 Technical Achievement Award: Elena Ferrari

The IEEE Computer Society presented its 2008 Technical Achievement Award to Elena Ferrari for her pioneering contributions to secure data management.  The Technical Achievement Award honors outstanding and innovative contributions to computer and information science and engineering, usually within the past 10 years. Professor Ferrari accepted her award at the Computer Society’s 9 June 2010 awards ceremony in Denver, Colorado.

Elena Ferrari is a full professor of computer science at the University of Insubria, Italy, where she heads the Database & Web Security Group. From 1998 until January 2001, she has been an assistant professor at the Department of Computer Science of the University of Milano. She received the MS degree and Ph.D. in computer science from the University of Milano in 1992 and 1998, respectively. Her research activities are related to data management systems, including web security, access control and privacy, multimedia databases, and temporal databases.

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2008 Taylor L. Booth Education Award: Jack W. Davidson and James P. Cohoon

The IEEE Computer Society presented its 2008 Taylor L. Booth Education Award to Jack W. Davidson and James P. Cohoon for sustained efforts to transform introductory computer science education. The Taylor L. Booth Education Award honors outstanding records in computer science and engineering education. Professor Davidson accepted the award on behalf of both recipients at the Computer Society's 9 June 2010 awards ceremony in Denver, Colorado.

Jack W. Davidson is a Professor of Computer Science in the School of Engineering and Applied Science at the University of Virginia. His research interests include compilers, programming languages, computer architecture, embedded systems, and computer security. James P. Cohoon is an Associate Professor of Computer Science at UVA. Davidson and Cohoon co-authored two best-selling introductory programming textbooks, C++ Program Design: An Introduction to Object-Oriented Programming, and Java 5.0 Program Design: An Introduction to Object-Oriented Programming.

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2008 IEEE Computer Society Harry H. Goode Award: Dharma P. Agrawal

The IEEE Computer Society presented its 2008 Harry H. Goode Award to Dharma P. Agrawal for his outstanding contributions and leadership in wireless and mobile systems, including ad hoc, sensor, and mesh networks. The Harry H. Goode Award honors achievements in the information processing field. Dr. Agrawal accepted his award at the Computer Society's 9 June 2010 awards ceremony in Denver, Colorado.

Dharma P. Agrawal is Ohio Board of Regents Distinguished Professor of Computer Science, University of Cincinnati. He is co-author of several textbooks, including Introduction to Wireless and Mobile Systems, and Ad Hoc and Sensor Networks, and co-edited the Encyclopedia on Ad Hoc and Ubiquitous Computing. His research interests include resource allocation and security in wireless mesh and sensor networks, and heterogeneous wireless networks.

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2008 IEEE Computer Society W. Wallace McDowell Award: Krishna V. Palem

The IEEE Computer Society presented its 2008 W. Wallace McDowell Award to Krishna V. Palem for his contributions to the algorithmic, compilation, and architectural foundations of embedded computing. The W. Wallace McDowell Award honors the outstanding recent theoretical, design, educational, practical, innovative contributions within the computing field. Professor Palem accepted his award at the Computer Society's 9 June 2010 awards ceremony in Denver, Colorado.

Krishna V. Palem is the Ken and Audrey Kennedy Professor of Computing at Rice University with appointments in Computer Science and in Electrical and Computer Engineering. His research interests, focused on all aspects of embedded computing, include adaptive computing, algorithms, compilers, low-energy computing, and nanoelectronics. Palem founded one of the first academic laboratories dedicated to the field in 1994, at the Courant Institute of Mathematical Science at NYU. His work at NYU led to the widely used TRIMARAN system.

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2008 Tsutomu Kanai Award: Benjamin W. Wah


Benjamin W. Wah is the Franklin W. Woeltge Endowed Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering and a Professor of the Coordinated Science Laboratory of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Urbana, IL. He also serves as the Director of the Advanced Digital Sciences Center, a largescale research center of the University of Illinois located in Singapore and funded by Singapore's Agency for Science, Technology, and Research (A*STAR). He will assume the position of Provost of the Chinese University of Hong Kong in 2010. He received his B.S. and M.S. degrees in electrical engineering from Columbia University in 1974 and 1975, respectively, and his M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in computer science from the University of California, Berkeley, CA, in 1975 and 1979, respectively.

As a volunteer leader, Wah has made numerous contributions in promoting the computing profession. During his service as the IEEE-CS President in 2001, he was instrumental in launching numerous initiatives. Two of his many accomplishments were to establish the IEEE-CS as a total information provider and to provide continuing education for computer professionals worldwide. Under his leadership, the IEEE-CS launched a distance learning program that offered hundreds of free online courses for its members. He cofounded the IEEE Transactions on Knowledge and Data Engineering and served as its Editor-in-Chief between 1993 and 1996.

Wah is a Fellow of the IEEE, the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM), and the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS). He has published over 280 papers, two authored books, three edited books, and an edited encyclopedia.

2008 Computer Entrepreneur Award: Charles M. Geschke and John E. Warnock


The 2008 Computer Entrepreneur Award is presented to Charles M. Geschke and John E. Warnock "Ã??for inventing PostScript and PDF and helping to launch the desktop publishing revolution and change the way people engage with information and entertainment".

Charles M. (Chuck) Geschke co-founded Adobe Systems Incorporated in 1982. A leader in the software industry for more than 35 years, Geschke retired from his position as president of Adobe in 2000 and continues to share the chairmanship of the board with Adobe'Ã??Ã??s co-founder John Warnock. Prior to co-founding Adobe Systems, Geschke formed the Imaging Sciences Laboratory at the Xerox Palo Alto Research Center (PARC) in 1980. He was a principal scientist and researcher at Xerox PARC's Computer Sciences Laboratory from 1972 to 1980.

Geschke actively participates on several boards of educational institutions, nonprofits, technology companies, and arts organizations. In 1995, he was elected to the National Academy of Engineering. In 2008, he was elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.

Industry and business leaders, including the IEEE, Association for Computing Machinery (ACM), Carnegie-Mellon University, the National Computer Graphics Association, and the Rochester Institute of Technology, have honored Geschke'Ã??Ã??s technical and managerial achievements. He received the regional Entrepreneur of the Year Award in 1991 and the national Entrepreneur of the Year Award in 2003. In 2002, he was elected a Fellow of the Computer History Museum. Geschke received the Medal of Achievement from the American Electronics Association (AeA) in 2006 and in 2007 he received the John W. Gardner Leadership Award. In 2000, Geschke was ranked the seventh most influential graphics person of the last millennium by Graphic Exchange magazine.

Geschke holds a Ph.D. in computer science from Carnegie-Mellon University and a M.S. in mathematics and an A.B. in Latin, both from Xavier University.

John E. Warnock is co-chairman of the Board of Directors of Adobe Systems, Inc., a company he co-founded in 1982 with Charles Geschke. Dr. Warnock was President of Adobe for his first two years and Chairman and CEO for his remaining 16 years at Adobe.

John has pioneered the development of graphics, web and electronic document technologies that have revolutionized the field of publishing and visual communication. Dr. Warnock holds seven patents.

John's career has been chronicled by the numerous awards for technical and managerial achievement. A partial list of awards includes: Entrepreneur of the Year from Ernst & Young, Merrill Lynch, and Inc. Magazine; University of Utah Distinguished Alumnus Award; Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) Software Systems Award. John has also received the Edwin H. Land Award from the Optical Society of America, the Bodleian Medal from Oxford University, and the Lovelace Medal from the British Computer Society. John is a distinguished member of the National Academy of Engineering, and a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. He has received Honorary Degrees from the University of Utah and the American Film Institute.

Before co-founding Adobe Systems, John was the Principal Scientist at Xerox Palo Alto Research Center (PARC). Prior to joining Xerox, John held key positions at Evans & Sutherland Computer Corporation, Computer Sciences Corporation, IBM, and the University of Utah. John holds B.S and M.S degrees in Mathematics and a Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering, all from the University of Utah.

2008 Computer Pioneer Award: Betty Jean Jennings Bartik


The 2008 Computer Pioneer Award is awarded to Betty Jean Jennings Bartik "For pioneering work as one of the first programmers, including co-leading the first teams of ENIAC programmers, and pioneering work on BINAC and UNIVAC I". Betty Jean Jennings Bartik holds a B.S. in Mathematics from Northwest Missouri State Teachers College (now Northwest Missouri State University), an M.S. in English from the University of Pennsylvania, and an honorary Doctor of Science from Northwest. Northwest also established the Jean Jennings Bartik Computing Museum to house a history of computing, its emphasis is on PCs, Digital’s PDP-11, ENIAC, BINAC and Univac. Northwest became the first electronic campus in 1987 and is now leading the way with electronic textbooks.

Along with the other ENIAC Programmers, Ruth Lichterman (Teitelbaum), Frances “Betty” Snyder (Holberton), Marlyn Westcoff (Meltzer), Kathleen McNulty (Mauchly) (Antonelli) and Frances Bilas (Spence), Jean was inducted into the Women in Technology International (WITI) Hall of Fame in 2002. She became a Fellow of The Computer History Museum in 2008. She also received the Korenman Award by the Multinational Development of Women in Technology (MDWIT) this year.

Sixty-four years ago, the 20-year-old Betty Jean Jennings (Bartik) answered the Army’s call for women math majors to calculate ballistics trajectories by hand for the Army’s Ballistics Research Lab (now Army Research Labs). Their job title was “Computer”. A few months later, she volunteered to run the first electronic computer, the Electronic Numeric Integrator and Computer (ENIAC). It was a tremendous success because it could calculate trajectories faster than a speeding bullet. She led the programming effort to turn the ENIAC into a stored program computer. She went on to program the Binary Automatic Computer (BINAC), and do logical design on the Universal Automatic Computer (UNIVAC), the first commercial computer.

Ms. Bartik’s career continued with pioneering work at Remington Rand, Auerbach Publishers and Honeywell.

The Army never introduced or credited the ENIAC women. Discovered in 1985 by Kathy Kleiman, belated recognition came to Ms. Bartik and the ENIAC Programmers along with documentation of their historic work. More information about Ms. Bartik, the ENIAC Programmers documentary and the feature documentary Ms. Kleiman now seeks to produce, together with stunning 1946 pictures, can be found at the ENIAC Programmers Project website,