Richard DeMillo

Distinguished Professor

Director, Center for 21st Century Universities (C21U)


Rich A. DeMillo is a Distinguished Professor of Computing at the Georgia Institute of Technology, the seventh ranked public university in the U.S. and one of the premier institutions internationally. He currently serves as the Director of the Center for 21st Century Universities (C21U).

He returned to academia in 2002 as the John P. Imlay Jr. Dean of Computing at Georgia Tech, after a career as an executive in industry and government. He was Chief Technology Officer for Hewlett-Packard, where he had worldwide responsibility for technology and technology strategy. Prior to joining HP, he was Vice President and General Manager in charge of Information and Computer Sciences Research at Telcordia Technologies (formerly Bellcore) in Morristown, New Jersey, where he oversaw the development of many internet and web-based innovations. He has also directed the Computer and Computation Research Division of the National Science Foundation. During his twenty-year academic career, he has also held academic positions at Purdue University, The University of Wisconsin and the University of Padua (Italy).

The author of over 100 articles, books, and patents, Rich’s research has spanned computer science and includes fundamental innovation in computer security, software engineering and mathematics. His present research interests are focused on information security and the creation of a new field of study devoted to the Web.

As Dean of the College of Computing, Rich was a transformational figure at Georgia Tech. Under his leadership, the College launched three new schools, two research centers and seven new degree programs. Annual expenditures doubled. He expanded the College’s international program and oversaw significant facilities expansions including the ground-breaking and construction of the 200,000-square-foot, $80 million Christopher Klaus Advanced Computing Building.

At a time when there is national concern about the quality of the high tech workforce, Rich led the country in transforming computer science education. As described in the new edition of Thomas L. Friedman’s The World is Flat: “What the Georgia Tech model recognizes is that the world is increasingly going to be operating off a flat world platform, with its tools for all kinds of horizontal transformation.”

He also led the College’s commercialization efforts, resulting most recently in the spin-out of new companies that commercialize Georgia Tech inventions, including Damballa Systems, a venture funded company aimed at detecting and stopping coordinated (botnet) attacks on corporate networks and Pramana, an early stage technology company that provides products for authenticating human presence on the web.

Investor and Board Activity Highlights

Public Boards

  • RSA Security: the market leader in network authentication and identity management technology. He served on the company’s compensation committee and M&A committees. He formed and chaired the board’s innovative Technology Committee, which had oversight for technology, R&D, strategy, strategic acquisitions, and intellectual property. During his tenure the market value of RSAS rose from under $500M to over $2B. Rich was a member of the M&A committee when RSAS was acquired by EMC in late 2006 for $2.1B..

Private Boards

  • Elity Systems: a Bellcore spinout of rule-based transaction analysis technology aimed at CRM applications. Elity was acquired by MarketSoft in 2004
  • Telelogue Technologies: a Bellcore/SAIC spinout of menu-driven voice recognition technology for automated directory and other telecommunications services. Telelogue was acquired by ScanSoft (now Nuance) in 2004.
  • Microelectronics and Research Corporation: a national R&D consortium of major ICT vendors, MCC was established to insure the competitiveness of US industry. Representing Bellcore and SAIC, his tenure included the transformation of MCC to a holding company for intellectual property.
  • Live Oak Ventures: A new venture firm in Atlanta.
  • Certess Systems: A privately held French company that commercializes software
    testing and reliability technology based on research that Rich conducted in the 1980s.
  • Pramana Systems: An Angel-backed company for commercializing human presence technology.
  • Homescape Artisans: A privately held company specializing in artistic creations for the home.

Non-Profit and Philanthropic Boards

  • The Exploratorium: one of the nation’s leading interactive museums of science and technology
  • The Computing Research Association: the voice of the research community in information technology

Corporate and Executive Experience


Rich was HP’s first Chief Technology Officer. Reporting to CEO and Chairman Carly Fiorina, he had worldwide responsibility for technology and technology strategy and was a member of HP’s executive committee. He also established and chaired HP’s Technology Council, which set R&D priorities, set standards and architectures and fostered new product introduction and innovation.

Among his accomplishments at HP were the following:

  • Corporate Trust and Security Strategy: He architected HP’s trust strategy. He was responsible for the development and introduction of a new market-unifying architecture for trusted systems, sponsored IPv6 efforts, and led the team that developed secure infrastructure following the September 11 terrorist attacks.
  • Service-Centric Computing: He was one of the principle architects of HP’s service-centric computing strategy, a utility-based model for virtual data centers.
  • Linux and Open-source Software: Under his leadership, HP established itself as a key player in the open-source community, forming a business unit and Linux development organization and an open-source governance structure.
  • Smart Spaces Connectivity Architecture: Rich led the productization effort for HP Labs’ Cooltown technology, establishing a web-based architecture and open standards for local fabric device connection. First products included web-enabled printers and imaging devices.
  • Embedded Processor Architectures: Under his leadership, both (1) custom VLIW hardware and software technologies and (2) the PICO (Programs-in-chips-out) silicon compilation tools were transferred from research to HP’s embedded processor division.
  • Nanotechnology: He was the first to unify the microfluidics competencies associated with thermal inkjet technology, nano-scale memory and storage solutions and molecular computing into a coherent R&D/product plan.

In addition to his role in product innovation, Rich was responsible for many innovations in the oversight and governance of R&D at HP, providing strategic direction for previously decentralized investment decision-making and tools for measuring and managing the execution of strategic R&D plans. He also had major responsibilities for customer and analyst engagements. He was the public spokesman for HP technology and one of the most visible figures in IT.

Shortly after September 11, 2001, at the request of Intel CEO Craig Barrett and HP CEO Carly Fiorina, Rich and Intel CTO Pat Gelsinger formed the IT Industry Computer Security Working Group, a cross-industry steering committee aimed at identifying significant gaps in the nation’s cyber infrastructure that could be addressed by enhanced R&D and product development.

Telcordia Technologies

Prior to joining HP, he was Vice President and General Manager for Information and Computer Sciences Research at Telcordia Technologies (formerly Bellcore) in Morristown, New Jersey where he directed computer science research and applied research in support of Telcordia’s software businesses, telecommunications consulting businesses, as well as government and other externally sponsored R&D. He also led Telcordia’s Internet Systems Group, aimed at the development and deployment of web-based software and online services for the communications industry.

At Telcordia, Rich led the technical teams that created and introduced many major product and service lines, including:

  • Electronic Commerce: In 1995, he formed and led a cross-company team to define and introduce Bellcore's first non-telephony software products. Among the innovations fostered by this effort were the first internet advertising server and the Adapt/X electronic commerce product line which included the first streaming media servers and e-commerce and financial service applications.
  • Internet Telephony: Rich led the effort to develop and demonstrate the first carrier-grade voice-over-packet solutions for network operators. Among the achievements of his team was the development of a voice-over-IP standard for major carriers and rule-based billing technologies that permit flexible rating and discounting processes to be applied to packet services.
  • Next-Generation Service Platforms: In the summer of 1997, his laboratory prototyped and defined a service platform architecture for carrier use in data and packet networks. Among the technical innovations springing from this work were several new architectural models for third-party service creation, network databases and business process integration.
  • Operations Support
  • Systems: Rich’s team developed many innovative technologies for Telcordia's operations support systems, including the highly successful Programmable Work Force Management System. Software Quality: He led the technology teams that were instrumental in achieving SEI CMM Level 5 certification in the Spring of 1999. Telcordia thus became the largest single organization in the world to achieve Level 5certification.
  • Software Tools: He led the development and marketing of Telcordia’s successful Software Understanding and Analysis Tool Suite, the Year 200 Test Factory and the Automated Test Generation System. He functioned as the CTO for Telcordia’s Software Systems organization, a development group of 6,000 software engineers who developed and maintained Telcordia extensive code base in support of telecommunications service providers. In addition, Rich had overall corporate responsibility for technology, strategy and planning for Telcordia’s software business and for product and service line architectures. He successfully used this position to focus world-class research teams on problems of strategic importance to the company. National Science Foundation From 1989 to 1991, Rich was the Director of the Computer and Computation Research Division at the National Science Foundation. In this capacity he managed the largest computing research division at NSF. He was responsible for most of the academic computer science research in the US, including programs in software engineering, theoretical computer science, numeric and symbolic computation, computer architecture, graphics, operating systems and programming languages. Among other achievements at NSF, he was responsible for successful national initiatives in High Performance Computing and Communications and Computational Biology.

Other Experience Prior to joining Telcordia, Rich was Professor of Computer Science and Director of the Software Engineering Research Center at Purdue University. From 1987 to 1995 he directed the operation of the Software Engineering Research Center, a National Science Foundation Industry-University Cooperative Research Center operated by Purdue, The University of Florida, and a consortium of four Oregon universities. This interdisciplinary research center consists of faculty, students, professional staff and industrial scientists engaged in basic and applied research, technology transfer projects, and quality improvement initiatives on behalf of a consortium of government and industrial members, sponsors and affiliates.

Under his leadership the Software Engineering Research Center became one of the most successful industrial research consortia in the nation. Until 1987, Rich was Professor of Information and Computer Science at the Georgia Institute of Technology in Atlanta, Georgia. He was founding director of Georgia Tech’s Software Engineering Research. His accomplishments as head of this center included the development and successful application of advanced software quality technology to high-visibility national security initiatives and systems such as the Patriot Air Defense System and the Strategic Defense Initiative. Another major accomplishment was his direction of the Software Test and Evaluation Project for the Office of the Secretary of Defense. In this role he was the chief architect of DoD policy for software testing and evaluation.

Rich has also held faculty appointments in Electrical Engineering at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee and Electronics and Informatics at the University of Padua in Padua, Italy where he helped establish an international master’s program in software engineering on whose Executive Committee he still serves. He is a co-inventor of fault-based cryptanalysis. His 1996 discovery that tamper-proof cards and tokens can be compromised by physical stress has led to a new area of research in cryptography, new methods for designing electronic commerce technologies, and the most recent SSL standard. He also conducts research on the development of large-scale software systems and in particular on the reliability and testing of such systems and on quantitative approaches to architectural design.

Rich and his collaborators originated the concept of dynamic slicing, which has since become a common technique for analyzing large software systems during development and maintenance. He was a co-inventor of the program mutation approach to software testing and has been the principle developer of the technology surrounding automated test based on this method. The 1976 analysis of formal methods that he wrote with Alan Perlis and Richard Lipton was one of the most influential software engineering papers of the 1970’s. He was one of the originators of modern research in cryptographically-based security methods. His papers on cryptographic protocols are among the first in the field to propose and analyze methods for using data security to provide transactional and functional security in computer systems. In 1976, Rich collaborated with Richard Lipton and L. H. Landweber to establish THEORYNET, one of the first national computer networks that connected research sites and is widely considered to be an early forerunner of CSNET, NSFNET and the Internet. Rich’s early research was largely devoted to mathematical and theoretical topics. His work on applying powerful mathematical logic techniques to computational complexity led to the discovery of independence results to characterize the famous P=NP problems of complexity theory. He was also responsible for the development of the combinatorial tools for analysis graph embeddings, which had wide-ranging application in software engineering, programming, and VLSI design.

Rich has served as a consultant to many major corporations and government agencies. He has served on several select panels including National Academy of Sciences/National Research Council committees on computer security, software engineering and computer software architecture. He was the only academic member of the Blue Ribbon panel commissioned by the Office of the Secretary of Defense to define the charter of the Software Engineering Institute. He has also been a special consultant to the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) for software safety in the new automated air traffic control system. He is
a member of several professional organizations and editorial boards and is a frequent member of workshop and symposium program committees. He is a Fellow of both the Association for Computing Machinery and the American Association for the Advancement of Science.

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