From the Dean's Desk - March 24, 2021

Dear GT Computing community,
Georgia Tech Dean of Computing Charles Isbell
I like good news, especially in weeks where it seems hard to find. Luckily, we have plenty to share.
First, I have good news on the RPT front. In the School of Computer Science, Vladimir Kolesnikov has been promoted to Professor and awarded tenure while Richard Peng has been awarded tenure and promoted to Associate Professor. In the School of Interactive Computing, Mark Riedl has been promoted to Professor. From the Division of Computing Instruction, Monica Sweat has been named Senior Lecturer Emerita, only our second emeritus senior lecturer (after Bill Leahy).
Finally, Neha Kumar has also been promoted to Associate Professor and awarded tenure. Although her primary appointment is in the School of International Affairs, she also has a minority appointment in SIC. Congratulations to all! 
In other good news, Prerna Ravi, a third-year CS major, has been selected for a 2021 Adobe Research Women-in-Technology scholarship. She is an undergraduate researcher who has worked with Thad Starner and Neha Kumar (there’s that name again), and the head teaching assistant for CS 1331. Please join me in congratulating Prerna for the scholarship and for an amazing start to her career.
Georgia Tech has received $2.2 million in robotics funding from the Toyota Research Institute for two projects. The first, with James Rehg (SIC) as PI, is the creation of a “mini-city” for testing autonomous driving. The second, which has Seth Hutchinson (SIC) as co-PI, will focus on human-assisted robots to help people age in place.
Also, not for nothing, but our former colleague and current friend I plan on taking credit for at least through the end of the year Ayanna Howard appeared on The View this week to talk about robotics and bias. Watch her now!
Finally, two Georgia Tech alumni, Mark Buffington and our own Paul Judge, have started a venture capital fund to invest in women and minority founders as well as in overlooked regions. They believe that the market has become so focused on Silicon Valley and founders from—let us say—a demographically narrow set that it has left considerable opportunity open elsewhere. It is always wonderful when we see our values around diversity realized in our larger community by those with the vision, drive, and resources to make a difference.
See? Lots of good news to to share this week and lots of our friends and colleagues to congratulate.
That’s an energy worth taking into the next few days, so t twistshake a tailfeatherelectric slide or double dutch your way to the weekend if need be. Or take a nap. Either way, see you next week.


Charles L. Isbell, Jr.
John P. Imlay, Jr. Dean
College of Computing
Georgia Tech
EA: Alicia Richhart,, 404-894-8357
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