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Peggy Aycinena
Peggy Aycinena
Peggy Aycinena is a freelance journalist and Editor of EDA Confidential at She can be reached at peggy at aycinena dot com.

Kaufman Award Dinner: Why you should Attend

January 5th, 2017 by Peggy Aycinena

IEEE’s CEDA and the ESD Alliance
– with help from their friends at PDF Solutions, Cadence, Mentor, Synopsys and ACM SIGDA – will host a dinner on Thursday, January 26th, in honor of the 2016 Phil Kaufman Award recipient: Dr. Andrzej Strojwas, Keithley Professor of ECE at Carnegie Mellon and long-time CTO at PDF Solutions.

Unfortunately, the last several Kaufman Award dinners were such over-the-top events – the 2014 event in honor of Dr. Lucio Lanza awash in glamour and luminaries, and the 2015 event in honor of Dr. Walden Rhines replete with zany zeitgeist and a roast from Intel-legend Craig Barrett unparalleled in the annals of EDA history.

The organizers of this year’s event may, therefore, find it impossible to craft something anywhere close to the previous two dinners, if the metrics of energy and frenetic glad-handing are the only ones of importance.

Of course, these are not the only two metrics of importance and nothing is ever impossible in EDA or IP, so do not despair.

The upcoming Kaufman Award dinner will be worth attending, will be unforgettable, will capture the ongoing spirit of innovation and entrepreneurship that serve as bedrock tothese industries – albeit, this year’s event will perhaps showcase a tad more dignity, gravitas, and understated scholarship than was on display in 2014 or 2015.

In other words, featured at the January 26th event in Silicon Valley will be those timeless qualities that have defined EDA and IP from the very beginning: Intelligence, hard work, perseverance, and superb engineering.

Ergo, you should be putting aside as much time and as many doubloons to attend this year’s dinner as you did in the past, and perhaps even more.

Because there was a time – back in the misty past when the industry celebrated accomplishment rather than celebrity itself – when the Kaufman Award winner stepped up to the podium and addressed his peers on substantive topics, offered descriptions of the technical work that had actually gotten him there in the first place.

And historically, that address also included profuse thanks to the technical colleagues, and often the many grad students as well, that had walked with the award recipient along the way. The Kaufman Award winner’s life partner/helpmate was also traditionally singled out with affection and gratitude.

When I spoke with Prof. Strojwas last fall about receiving the 2016 Kaufman Award, I found him to be humble, grateful and extremely intelligent. When Dr. Strojwas is honored on January 26th, no doubt those attributes will be part of a refreshing evening of sincerity and intellect.

It’s not hard to predict that when this year’s guest of honor steps up to the podium, he will offer up both wisdom and thoughtful reflections on the technologies to which he has contributed greatly, both in academia and industry.

It’s also not hard to predict that he will count himself lucky to have been singled out for the evening from a large group of outstanding colleagues, all of whom he respects and all of whom together have helped change the history of humankind.

This year’s Kaufman Award Dinner promises to be an inspiring evening, one that will help you remember why you went to work here in the first place.

If you want to attend, you can register here.


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One Response to “Kaufman Award Dinner: Why you should Attend”

  1. Bob Smith says:

    We fully expect this to be a very memorable event – thank you for the great writeup. With the special entertainment being planned it will be also be a lot of fun!

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