Wednesday, March 24, 2010

In Honour of Ada Lovelace Day -- A Technical Woman I Admire

It is Ada Lovelace Day so I'm blogging about a technical woman I admire. First, there are many technical women I admire: some are my students, my University of Toronto Computer Science colleagues, my former classmates and professors (at Queen's University), my former IBM colleagues, my mentors, my ACM-W colleagues ... you know who you are :-)

I have been fortunate to be part of a strong network of very smart, technical women -- even though we are smaller in proportion within the technical community, we are large in our voices, our contributions, and our support for one another.

I have decided to blog about one person I admire because she has been particularly supportive and helpful for me in my transition from industry to academia. That person is Eleni Stroulia at the University of Alberta. I admire many things about Eleni and have been striving to learn from her and emulate her as an academic. I admire the kind of supervisor and mentor she is to her students. Check out the advice document she prepared for her graduate students. I admire her many accomplishments and successful grant applications. I admire the tremendous amount of service she provides to the computer science community in Canada and around the world. I admire her professionalism and ability in building relationships with industry partners. I very much enjoyed working with her in that capacity when I was at IBM CAS. I admire her breadth of research and her ability and desire to build research collaborations across disciplines. I admire her sense of humour and love listening to her stories. Finally, I admire her as a person, a parent, a friend .. and, even though she is younger than I am, I want to be just like her when I grow up!

Thank you to the organizers of Ada Lovelace Day for reminding us to think about and be thankful for the incredible technical women that have inspired us in our careers and our lives.