CS@VT 40th Anniversary Distinguished Award Recipients

Publish Date: 12/03/2010

While celebrating the Department’s 40th Anniversary at a reception held on November 13th, the Department took a moment to recognize the recipients of the Distinguished Service Award and the Distinguished Alumnus Award. The awards served as recognition of the significant impact these individuals have had on the CS@VT community.

The Department of Computer Science Distinguished Service award was presented to Nora and Dean Kirstein.

Since their graduation, Nora and Dean Kirstein have generously supported the Department of Computer Science. They were largely responsible for the creation of the Anne and George Gorsline Scholarship, endowed in memory of Dr. George Gorsline and to honor his wife, Anne. Dr. Gorsline served as the first Department Head of Computer Science, and honoring Anne and George in this manner, recognizes their contributions to our Department. Nora and Dean have worked tirelessly to solicit contributions from fellow CS alumni in support of this endowment, which funds several student scholarships annually. 

The Kirstein's  and Dr. Ryder

The Department of Computer Science Distinguished Alumnus Award was presented to Dr. Greg Lavender for his significant contributions to both industry and academia.

Dr. Greg Lavender earned both a Masters degree (1988) and a PhD degree (1993) in Computer Science at Virginia Tech. After his doctoral studies, Dr. Lavender was Chief Scientist of two Internet server software start-up companies. From 2000-2004 Dr. Lavender worked for Sun Microsystems, leading the development of Sun’s Internet Directory Service product, creating one of the most successful distributed computing software products in Sun’s history. Dr. Lavender also led the development of OpenSolaris and the Solaris11 operating system at Sun Microsystems before moving to Oracle, where he served as VP of Engineering for the Solaris core operating system. 

During this time, Dr. Lavender was also an adjunct faculty member of the Department of Computer Science at University of Texas, Austin – teaching graduate and undergraduate courses and mentoring graduate students in research. From 2004-2007 he served full-time as Associate Chair for Academics, strengthening and modernizing the academic program for a department ranked 8th in the country in 2010.

Now based in Silicon Valley, Dr. Lavender serves as VP of Foundation Engineering in the Network Software and Systems Technology Group of Cisco Systems. He is responsible for leading a next-generation Internetwork Operating System for Cisco’s routers and switches.

Greg Lavender and Dr. Ryder