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CRA Announces 2006 Service Award Winners

CRA is pleased to announce the winners of its 2006 service awards, which will be presented at CRA's Conference at Snowbird, Utah, on June 25, 2006.

Distinguished Service Awards will be given this year to Mary Jane Irwin, Penn State University, and David Patterson, University of California, Berkeley.

Mary Lou Soffa, University of Virginia, will receive the A. Nico Habermann award for her outstanding contributions to increasing the numbers and/or successes of underrepresented members in the computing research community.

On the recommendation of the Distinguished Service Award Committee, the board also approved a special award for Stuart Zweben, Ohio State University, for his long-term involvement and efforts on behalf of CRA's annual Taulbee Survey.

CRA Distinguished Service Awards

Mary Jane Irwin, Evan Pugh Professor and Co-director of the Embedded and Mobile Computing Center (emc2) in the CSE Department at Penn State University, has served at high levels with distinction in three of the main computing research professional organizations. She was a long-time and active member of the CRA board and vice-chair for four years; a member of council and vice president of ACM; and a member of council of the IEEE Computer Society.

Irwin played a fundamental role in founding CRA-W, and has continued to be active in this leading organization for more than a decade. She has helped to set the future research agenda for the computer architecture community by co-chairing CRA's grand challenge conference in this area. Her record of participation in professional publications and conference activities is unusually rich.

David Patterson, Professor of Computer Science at the University of California, Berkeley, has a wide range of service activities in addition to being a leading computing researcher. He served for four years as CRA's board chair, during which he revitalized the membership of the board, greatly strengthened the financial abilities of the organization so it could better carry out work on behalf of the computing research community, and oversaw an expansion and strengthening of the programs, in particular in government affairs and representation of women.

As current president of ACM, Patterson has used his standing to speak out forcefully and effectively for improving the innovation climate in the United States through his efforts to return DARPA to a more basic research agenda, increasing federal funding for computing research and development, making the United States a more welcoming place to foreign students and researchers, and encouraging American students to pursue a computing research career.

CRA A. Nico Habermann Award

Mary Lou Soffa, the Owen R. Cheatham Professor and Chair of Computer Science at the University of Virginia, was the founder of CRA-W's Affiliate Distributed Mentoring Program and co-founder (with Jan Cuny) of the CRA-W Graduate Student Cohort and the Cohort for Associate Professors. The Graduate Student Cohort program is now bringing 200 women together annually for a two-day workshop. Soffa has consistently been responsible for finding funding for these programs, recently obtaining significant funding from industrial sources, even as the programs have grown. She is also extremely active in individual mentoring. She has graduated 21 PhD students and 54 MS students, and more than half of these are women. Eight are tenured or tenure-track faculty members.

Soffa is active in minority enrollment issues as well. As Dean of Arts and Sciences at University of Pittsburgh she doubled the enrollment of minority students. Since 1992 she has been an active advisor to Florida A&M, a historically black university, where she substantially helped both the university administration and their ABET accreditation. In 1999, Soffa won the Presidential Award for Excellence in Science, Mathematics, and Engineering Mentoring.

Special Award

On the recommendation of the Distinguished Service Award Committee, the CRA board approved a special award for Stuart Zweben to recognize his outstanding service to the computing research community, with particular attention drawn to the CRA Taulbee Survey. Over many years, this survey has been exceptionally helpful both as a policy-making tool and in improving the conditions of employment of academic computing researchers, thus helping with recruitment and retention in our community.

Zweben is Professor and Associate Dean for Academic Affairs and Administration at Ohio State University's College of Engineering. He served as one of ACM's representatives on the CRA board of directors from 1997-2004, and continues to take a leadership role in the Taulbee Survey. In addition, Professor Zweben has a strong record of involvement in undergraduate education, particularly with ABET, the organization that accredits college and university programs in applied science, computing, engineering, and technology.



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