CCI Associate Dean Honored

Date Published: 
Monday, July 24, 2017

The Center for Minorities and People with Disabilities in Information Technology (CMD-IT) has announced that Dr. Manuel Pérez Quiñones, Associate Dean for the College of Computing and Informatics, is the 2017 recipient of the Richard A. Tapia Achievement Award for Scientific Scholarship, Civic Science, and Diversity in Computing.  The award is bestowed annually to an individual who demonstrates significant leadership, commitment, and contributions to diversifying computing.

“I am very honored to receive this award,” said Dr. Pérez Quiñones.  “I have spent a great deal of my professional career developing programs to diversify the field of computer science.  Being recognized by the CMD-IT for those efforts is very humbling.”

“Manuel Pérez Quiñones has a long history of leadership with diversity and inclusion in computer science” said Valerie Taylor, CMD-IT Executive Director.  “He has created and led impactful programs for African-Americans, Latinos, LGBTQ, Native Americans and women students in his role as an academic leader.  Most recently he created a Corporate Mentoring Program at UNC Charlotte for women freshmen students, matching them with female corporate representatives.  He continues to co-manage the Hispanics in Computing listserv that he founded, which has over 400 members.  Manuel's work on increasing diversity in computer science has a profound impact on thousands of students, academics and industry professionals.”

Dr. Pérez Quiñones will be presented the award at the 2017 Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) Richard Tapia Celebration of Diversity in Computing Conference to take place in September 20-23 in Atlanta, Georgia.  It is the premier venue to bring together students, faculty, researchers and professionals from all backgrounds and ethnicities in computing to promote and celebrate diversity in computing.

Dr. Tapia is a professor at Rice University and is recognized as a national leader in diversity and has delivered numerous invited addresses at national and international mathematics conferences, served on university diversity committees, and provided leadership at a national level.  Two professional conferences have been named in his honor, recognizing his contributions to diversity: the Richard Tapia Celebration of Diversity in Computing Conference and the Blackwell-Tapia Conference, whose founders described Tapia as a seminal figure who inspired a generation of African-American, Native American and Latino/Latina students to pursue careers in mathematics.

About the College of Computing and Informatics
The College of Computing and Informatics (CCI) is the largest and most comprehensive technology program in North Carolina, and one of the largest in the nation, offering scale and critical mass in cutting-edge research and innovation. CCI is a national leader in interdisciplinary partnerships, bridging fundamental research with critical scientific, societal, and national defense challenges. It is also the home to leading research centers and institutes, including the Cyber Defense and Network Assurability (CyberDNA) Center, the Bioinformatics Research Center, the Charlotte Visualization Center, the Complex Systems Institute, and the Center for Education Innovation.  Active research awards currently total $38 million.  cci.uncc.edu  @UNCC_CCI

About the University of North Carolina at Charlotte

UNC Charlotte is North Carolina’s urban research university. It is the fourth largest campus among the seventeen institutions of the University of North Carolina system and the largest institution of higher education in the Charlotte region. Current enrollment exceeds 28,000 students, including 5,000 graduate students.

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Media Contact:  Clark G. Curtis, 704-687-7983, clarkcurtis@uncc.edu