This article is published in the September 2009 issue.

Grimson Approved as New CRA Board Chair

The Computing Research Association’s Board of Directors in August approved the appointment of MIT’s Eric Grimson as the organization’s 21st board chair. He replaces Peter Lee of CMU, who stepped down earlier that month after accepting an appointment to the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA).

Grimson, who is the Bernard Gordon Professor of Medical Engineering at MIT and head of its Electrical Engineering and Computer Science department, has served on CRA’s Board of Directors since 2006 and has been a member of the organization’s Executive Committee, Snowbird 2008 Planning Committee, and Faculty Recruitment Timelines Committee. He succeeds Lee, who served just two months of his term before stepping down to accept an appointment to head a new office at DARPA focused on transformational research.

CRA’s vice-chair, Laura Haas of IBM Research, in her role as acting chair and in consultation with CRA’s Elections and Executive Committees, appointed Grimson to serve out the remainder of Lee’s two-year term. The Board of Directors approved Grimson’s appointment on August 17.

In accepting his appointment, Grimson noted that the need for an organization like CRA was strong. “Virtually every CS department in the country is facing significant challenges: slow or no gains in diversity of students and faculty, an altered and more restrictive research funding landscape, and a myriad of financial pressures,” he said. “CRA can and has served an important role in addressing these issues: by serving as an impartial voice for CS to the government, by articulating best practices, by coordinating efforts to improve the image of computing, and by building ties to key industrial partners.”

“I would like to continue to help drive CRA initiatives to strengthen the outreach of every CS department to attract, support and retain a broader array of students,” Grimson said.

In addition to his work with CRA, Grimson is a Fellow with the Association for the Advancement of Artificial Intelligence and a Fellow of the IEEE. His research interests include computer vision, medical image analysis, image-guided surgery, and machine learning applications in vision and medical image analysis. His current term as chair will end in June 2011, when he will be eligible for reelection.

Grimson Approved as New CRA Board Chair