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May 30: Carnegie Mellon Names Peter Lee To Lead Computer Science Department


Byron Spice

Anne Watzman

Carnegie Mellon Names Peter Lee
To Lead Computer Science Department

Lee Will Step Down as Vice Provost To Replace Jeannette Wing as Department Head

PITTSBURGH—Peter Lee, professor and vice provost for research at Carnegie Mellon University, has been named the new head of the Computer Science Department in the School of Computer Science. He succeeds Jeannette Wing, who on July 1 will become assistant director of Computer Science and Information Science and Engineering (CISE) at the National Science Foundation.    

Peter Lee"Peter has done an extraordinary job since assuming the post of vice provost for research last summer," said Carnegie Mellon Provost and Senior Vice President Mark Kamlet. "I know he'll bring the same energy and skill to this very important position as head of the Computer Science Department."    

"During Peter Lee's 20-year career at Carnegie Mellon, he has demonstrated outstanding capabilities in research, education and administration," said Randal E. Bryant, dean of the School of Computer Science. "I look forward to working with him as he leads a department that has had major impact on the field of computer science over the past 50 years and will continue to do so in the future."    

Lee's appointment received the strong endorsement of a faculty committee charged with evaluating the department's needs and reviewing potential candidates to replace Wing. The committee was led by Todd Mowry and included Dave Andersen, Lenore Blum, Tom Mitchell, Tom Murphy and Frank Pfenning.    

"I am so pleased to receive this appointment," Lee said. "I am especially encouraged by the support of the university, Dean Bryant, and the department's faculty, students and staff. Everyone's support helps turn what would otherwise be a daunting challenge into an opportunity to be relished. I've always felt it a great honor to have so many distinguished colleagues here, and I look forward to helping them take the department to new heights."

Lee is internationally recognized for his contributions to computer science research and, in particular, for the use of advanced language technology in the design, implementation and analysis of operating systems and networks. He is best known for co-developing "proof-carrying code," a patented technology that enables a computer system to automatically determine that a program obtained from another system is safe to install and execute.    

He is an award-winning teacher who served as the School of Computer Science's associate dean for undergraduate programs from 2000 to 2004. During his five-year stint, the undergraduate program continued its rise to national prominence for its intensive problem-solving curriculum and saw a major increase in the number of women enrolled.    

Lee is a fellow of the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM), a member of the ACM's Special Interest Group for Programming Languages Executive Committee and a member of the board of directors of the Computing Research Association. He is also a senior advisor to the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency's (DARPA) Information Exploitation Office and is a former member of DARPA's Information Science and Technology Board. He has served on the Army Science Board and on panels for the Defense Science Board, the National Academies' Computer Science and Telecommunications Board, the Defense Threat Reduction Agency and the National Science Foundation.    

Lee earned his Ph.D. in computer and communication science at the University of Michigan in 1987 and subsequently joined Carnegie Mellon as a research computer scientist. He became an assistant professor of computer science in 1988, associate professor in 1994 and a full professor in 2000.