March, 2011 - Vol 13, Issue 3
Happy 90th Birthday Kelly Gotlieb!
In This Issue
Happy 90th Birthday to CIPS Founder Kelly Gotlieb!
Kelly's Contributions to CIPS and other Professional Associations
About Kelly's Life
The Father of Computing in Canada
CIPS Joins in Celebration for Kelly's Birthday
Three Short Stories about Kelly
Interviews with Kelly
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Happy 90th Birthday to CIPS Founder Kelly Gotlieb!
Happy Birthday Kelly
Kelly's Contributions to CIPS and other Professional Associations

Selected Contributions to CIPS  

  • founding Member of CIPS in September 1958
  • third President of the Canadian Information Processing Society
  • Chairman of the National Awards Nominating Sub-Committee, 1988-89
  • in 1988 CIPS established the C.C. Gotlieb Award which is presented annually to a Member who is widely recognized for outstanding contribution to CIPS through years of substantial efforts on behalf of the Society

Selected Contributions to other Professional Associations

  • served as Canada's representative at the founding meeting of IFIP in 1959
  • served as Canada's IFIP representative from 1960-1966
  • former editor-in-chief of the Journal of the Association of Computing Machinery
  • Chairman of the IFIP Technical Committee (TC-9) on the Relationship between Computers and Society (1975-1981)
  • Chairman of the Association for Computing Machinery Awards Committee (1988-1993)

Click Here to Read More

About Kelly's Life

(via the University of Toronto website)


Kelly Gotlieb 1950sKelly is widely regarded as the "father of computing in Canada" and, as stated in his 1996 Order of Canada investiture, "has been largely responsible for leading Canadians into the modern age of computing."


Early Accomplishments:

-part of the first team in Canada that assembled parts to design and construct digital computers and to provide computing services (1948)

-co-founded the original Computation Centre at the University of Toronto (1948)

-established the first university credit course on computing in Canada (1950)

-offered the first Canadian graduate courses in computing (1951)

-Initiated the world's first long distance use of an electronic computer using telegraph lines between the University of Saskatchewan and the FERUT computer at the University of Toronto (1955)

-founded the first graduate department of Computer Science in Canada, at the University of Toronto (1964)


Ongoing Commitment to Computer Science

Kelly is now in his 90th year and still actively involved in the field of computer science. Kelly continues to contribute to the field in a variety of roles and activities:

-Professor Emeritus in Computer Science and in the Faculty of Information Studies at the University of Toronto

-Co-chair of the ACM's Awards Committee for the past 20 years (The ACM has 97,000 members and is now the largest scientific organization in the world, responsible for twenty major information technology awards, including the Turing Award [the computing equivalent of the Nobel Prize])

-Mileage for 2010 travel for Computer Science related business totals 15,322 km



Kelly was born on March 27, 1921 in Toronto. In addition to his many accomplishments in the field of computer science, Kelly has led a rich family life. Kelly was married for over 60 years to Phyllis, renowned poet and science fiction author. Phyllis wrote 18 science fiction and poetry books over her career and the premier award in science fiction  was named after her first book "Sunburst." In 2006 the couple was featured in a Toronto Star Valentine's Day article describing their long and happy union and Phyllis's Valentine's Day ritual that entailed her writing a love poem for her husband each year.

Kelly and Phyllis have three children. Kelly is now a grandfather as well and enjoys spending time with his grandchildren.


Click Here to Read More


The Father of Computing in Canada

(via the University of Toronto website)


"He is a computing pioneer, whose innovations and accomplishments helped lay the foundation of an entire worldwide industry, educational stream, and profession. His contributions are so profound and their impact so diverse in so many areas that the lasting value cannot be comprehended."  
     - Stephen Ibaraki, Canadian Information Processing Society

Given the pervasiveness of computers today, it is hard to believe that there was once a debate about their potential. But in the 1940's skeptics ruled the day. This did not daunt Calvin C. (Kelly) Gotlieb and other members of the Physics Department at the University of Toronto. Through his vision, inspiration, and leadership, Gotlieb played a fundamental role in bringing Canadians into the modern age of computing. His efforts lead to the formation of Departments of Computer Science in universities across the country, departments whose graduates drive Canada's prosperous and growing Information and Communications Technology (ICT) industry. Gotlieb also had the vision to recognize that computers would have profound impacts on society, and that policies needed to be created to ameliorate the worst of these impacts. More than six decades later, Gotlieb's progressive ideas and revolutionary vision remain the foundation for today's computer technology.


Click Here to Read More 


CIPS Joins in Celebration for Founder Kelly Gotlieb's 90th Birthday

On Monday March 28th 2011 CIPS representatives attended Kelly Gotlieb's 90th birthday celebration ceremony at the University of Toronto. This included a distinguished lecture by Kelly himself, "Chiefly about Computing", followed by a private dinner reception. It was a wonderful and emotional event, and attendees felt honoured to have been part of the celebration.


CIPS representatives included Mary Jean Kucerak (Executive Director), Trekker Armstrong, I.S.P., ITCP (CIPS CCITP Chair), and Stephen Ibaraki, FCIPS, I.S.P., ITCP (CIPS Board Chairman & President (2007/8, Advisor OEC 2008-present)). Trekker and Stephen were both invited to the head table and delivered remarkable speeches (as part of 4 keynotes speakers) in front of a full house at the Great Hall, in the Heart House building at U of T. Click Here to Read Trekker's Speech


lecturetrekker mj stephenceremony  





Three Short Stories about Kelly


Story 1:
Kelly has chaired or co-chaired the ACM Awards Committee for over two decades. This therefore excludes Kelly from receiving some of computing's highest honours. According to Stephen Ibaraki, "Kelly would have received ACM's Turing Award, the Nobel Prize of Computing, if he didn't serve in this self-less way, and for so many years. His life is about giving and to so many." 

Story 2:
Vint Cerf is often credited with creating the internet and has received many honours for his work, including the Turing Award ( Kelly, who continued teaching into his 80s', needed a speaker and at his request Vint Cerf flew in to speak to his students and spent significant time with them, including coaching his graduate students on their work. Vint was able to provide meaningful and constructive insights for all of the grad students to improve their diverse work, a measure of the abilities of Vint to have intimate in-depth knowledge in so many areas of research. However this story also illustrates the high regard that Kelly is held by the world's best scientists where Vint would make this time available for Kelly and his students.
Story 3:
The Intel International Science and Engineering Fair (ISEF) is the world's largest and only science fair where pre-collegiate finalists from over 50 countries and regions showcase their innovative research. If you ever wondered what happens when students enter a science fair, ultimately the winners from each country and region end up at the ISEF. The work is world class. Kelly has been judging at the ISEF more than once and it is exhausting work looking intimately at the research performed by these young scientists. Stephen Ibaraki noted that, "This speaks to Kelly's commitment to education, and his contribution as a mentor for computing science innovation." In 2010, due to a last minute shortage, Kelly stepped up to judge again at 89. The hours are very long and work intensive. However, his insightful analysis, questions to the students, and 70+ years of experience proved invaluable. As noted by Stephen who served as head ACM special awards judge, "having Kelly as co-judge was truly inspiring, as he is an amazing visionary leader, and you can imagine the good fortune of the students to have a computing pioneer and iconic figure encouraging them to continue their research."   


Interviews, Blogs & Podcasts
by Stephen Ibaraki FCIPS, I.S.P., ITCP/IP3P
 Stephen Ibaraki
          Hear the thoughts and commentary from
          international experts and community leaders:

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    Interviews with Kelly Gotlieb:

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