The IEEE Computer Society has a well-earned and highly-respected reputation for innovative conferences, engaged chapter activities, trusted standards, quality publications and dedicated, diverse volunteers. However, we are challenged with a dynamically evolving and changing technical field, with an increasing need to network and share information and with the impact of a global pandemic, which has impacted how people interact, highlighted the importance of computing technology, and evolved the definition of many of our core services and benefits.
The Computer Society must continually change to influence and integrate the evolving landscape. As an active volunteer and manager, I have the leadership skills to encourage innovative solutions from our members, to integrate ideas that align with our mission, and to nurture creative innovation towards the future we envision.
I plan to focus on the following:
Nurturing membership growth through conferences, standards and services. The Computer Society conferences play an important role in fostering innovation by providing exposure to the latest technical advances, providing continuous learning opportunities, cultivating new perspectives, and enabling networking.
Providing access to critical technology to our members through leading publications, continuing education, and energized Technical Communities. Intentionally evaluating market trends and emerging tech will enable the Computer Society to be the premier source for information, inspiration, and collaboration in computing technology.
Optimizing chapter activities worldwide to expand and strengthen communities within the Computer Society by sharing best practices, by encouraging opportunities to get involved and by developing future leaders. Chapters are the bedrock of direct member contact and can significantly influence both membership and engaged participation.
Increasing volunteer impact by evaluating our tools, processes, and services to make them as simple, relevant and accessible as possible, by developing student and early-career professionals and by expanding the inclusiveness of our volunteer teams. I am frequently humbled by the incredible dedication and energy of our Computer Society volunteers and would love to enable them to achieve more.
I would be honored to work with you to set in motion creative ideas that have long-lasting value for our organization. To this end, I would truly appreciate your support. Please visit www.nitapatel.org for more information.
Nita Patel, P.E., is Senior Director, Engineering Lead Design Center – Farmington at Otis leading a critical part of the global engineering development, providing a wide range of new product capabilities in connected, smart, IoT-based platforms. She was previously with L3Harris where she was Senior Director, Engineering and led multi-disciplinary, embedded-software design teams in innovative research and new product development, for which she was recognized for significant technical contributions as 2014 L3 Engineer of the Year and 2011 New Hampshire Engineer of the Year.
Nita is a Director of the IEEE Foundation and is active with multiple Computer Society committees, the IEEE Industry Engagement Committee, several IEEE WIE Committees and the IEEE New Hampshire executive committee. Nita has served as 1st Vice President Computer Society, served a three-year term on the Computer Society Board of Governors, founded and led the first five years of the IEEE Women in Engineering International Leadership Conference (WIE ILC), served as Women in Engineering International Chair for which she received the 2014 Larry K Wilson Transnational Award for distinguished contributions to IEEE global activities, served on the Eta Kappa Nu Board of Governors and was IEEE-USA VP of Communications & Public Awareness.
Outside of IEEE, Nita is an active leader within Toastmasters International and the United States Chess Federation. Nita received her MS Computer Engineering, BS Electrical Engineering and BS Mathematics from Southern Methodist University in Dallas.
Computing is fundamental to emerging interdisciplinary technological ventures, from financial transactions and smartphones to climate forecasting and intelligent manufacturing. The COVID-19 pandemic demonstrates computing’s fundamental role at fronts such as real-time patient information processing, collection and analysis of large amounts of health data, and medication and vaccine development, which enable decision-making in industry and governance.
New interdisciplinary approaches to computing are necessary to address emerging challenges. We need to mobilize engineers around the world, without constraints, and to exploit new methods and data to address the challenges for reliability, security and safety at an international level. While computers control critical infrastructure and influence our safety and well-being, their protection is challenging. Recent cases of digital industrial espionage for COVID-19 vaccine and medication comes to no surprise.
The IEEE Computer Society, part of the largest engineering body internationally, is well positioned to lead and shape the future of computing worldwide. The pandemic and its resulting misfortune, even panic, brought upon people, has led to strong teamwork that brings optimism for overcoming future challenges. The post-COVID era will change the way people conduct business, get educated, and spend free time. IEEE CS should lead computing’s evolution in the new world through activities like: (i) collaboration with international organizations and governments to increase reliable and secure digital services to citizens, (ii) collaboration with other IEEE societies, considering the interdisciplinarity of computer-based systems; (iii) leadership in development and adoption of new technologies, standards and best practices; (iii) support the growth of new engineers, as they are challenged by interdisciplinary requirements and changing working environments.
During my service as CS BoG member, I worked effectively on (i) financial sustainability (CS achieved record-breaking surplus when I served as Treasurer in 2019) and (ii) strengthening IEEE CS technical leadership, especially in the areas of cyberphysical systems and IoT, with STC initiation and publications.
Exploiting robust IEEE CS operations, my election will lead to (i) support Society adaptation to operations in the new era, (ii) strengthen technical activities in emerging areas like robust smart cities, (iii) increase inter-societal activities, (iv) foster open access, and (v) support young engineers with technical and career development programs.
Coming originally from Greece, a small part of the world that established and spread democracy, philosophy and engineering worldwide, I envision an environment where technology and engineering constitute the basis for international cooperation, growth and inclusion. IEEE CS can lead the way!
Dimitrios Serpanos is Professor of ECE, University of Patras and President of the Computer Technology Institute, Greece. He holds a PhD in Computer Science from Princeton University (1990) and an Engineering Diploma in Computer Engineering and Informatics, University of Patras (1985). His research focuses on embedded and industrial control systems architecture and cybersecurity.
He has served as President of the University of Western Greece (2010-2013) and as Director of the Industrial Systems Institute/ATHENA (2008-2013 & 2016-2021). He has been Research Staff Member at IBM (T.J. Watson, 1990-1996), and faculty at the Universities of Crete (1996-2000) and Patras (2000-). He was Principal Scientist at the Qatar Computing Research Institute (2013-2016).
He has published widely in journals and conferences and holds 2 US patents. His research has been well funded by the European Commission, the Greek Government and the private sector in Europe and the USA.
He has received several awards and honors: IEEE CS Golden Core Award (2017), the first IBM Faculty Award in Greece (2005), five Certificates of Appreciation Awards from IEEE CS, two IBM awards and a University Merit Prize from Princeton.
He is Chair of the ARTEMIS Scientific Council.
He served as member of IEEE CS Board of Governors (2017-2020) and is its representative on CEDA’s BoG. He served as IEEE CS Secretary (2020), Treasurer (2019) and on several committees (ExCom, FinCom, C&B, NomCom, PlanCom).
He is founder of WESS/ESWEEK (2006–2015). He has served as General or TPC chair at more than 15 IEEE conferences, and TPC member at more than 100 events. He is member of the Editorial Board of IEEE Computer and AE of IEEE Transactions on Emerging Topics in Computing. He served as AE of IEEE TII (2007-2019) and ACM TECS (2003-2016).
He is IEEE Senior Member and member of ACM, NYAS and AAAS.