Hall of Fame 2003

Note: The accomplishments listed on this page are current as of Fall, 2003.

Patrick J. Gossman

  • Prog Chair USC 1985
  • Board Member 1991-1993
  • Board Member 1993-1995
  • Presenter USC 1978, 1981

Tex Hull

  • Presenter USC 1976
  • Conference Committee, USC 1982

Although born C Hadlai Hull, he is best known as “Tex”. hullAfter receiving an MBA from Stanford in 1966, he became involved in the initial development of SPSS. He maintained an involvement with SPSS from 1969 to 1976 while he was an assistant director of the University of Chicago Computation Center with responsibility for User Services. Since 1976, he has been involved full time with SPSS, holding positions of decreasing responsibility and increasing fulfillment ranging from founder to vice president to principal software engineer. Tex attended every User Services conference from the first in Chicago to the 1989 conference in Bethesda. He spoke at a few of the early conferences when he was directly involved in user services, but mostly he listened.

Tex and his wife, Susan, live in an apartment in downtown Chicago from which he can walk to work. Their leisure activities include sailing, SCUBA diving, rowing, and trying to keep track of their two grown children.

Linda J. Hutchison

  • SIGUCCS Board of Directors 1995-2001
  • SIGUCCS Secretary-Treasurer 1997-2001
  • USC Conference Proceedings 1987
  • USC Program Chair 1995
  • USC Webmaster 1995
  • State Captain – Iowa 1996-97, 1999-2001
  • USC Tutorial Presenter 1984, 1985, 1996, 1999, 2001
  • USC Evaluations Chair 2003
  • CSMS Tutorials Chair 1995

hutchisonLinda received her degree in Industrial Administration with an emphasis in Finance and Management from Iowa State University and has completed work toward her Master’s degree at ISU in Industrial Education and Technology with an emphasis in Training and Development. Working in computing since 1972, she realized early that every IT job boils down to providing service to the end user. Linda currently is the Division Director for Customer Relationship Management at Oregon Health & Science University in Portland, Oregon where she leads a team that she describes as, “the most talented, diverse, and interesting group of individuals you could ever hope to meet.” Before moving to Portland in 2003, she spent 27 years at Iowa State University, two years at Central Missouri State University, and one year outside higher education working for Pioneer Hybrid International.

Linda will tell anyone who will listen that SIGUCCS has been the single biggest contributor to her continued interest and success in her career. Encouraged by fellow SIGUCCS regular and then boss, Phil Isensee, to present at the 1984 Fall User Services Conference in Reno, she has made SIGUCCS a significant part of her personal and professional life ever since. She has been involved almost every year since as a tutorial or paper presenter (some years both, which she will tell you is insane), member of the steering committee, state captain or session chair. She encourages all attendees to extend their participation and move from being a face in the audience to taking an active role in one or both of the SIGUCCS annual conferences.

“I’ve made my most valuable professional connections through SIGUCCS, and some of my dearest friends are among my SIGUCCS colleagues. My deepest appreciation goes to the association for what you’ve given to me, and my heartfelt thanks goes to the many talented and caring people for giving part of themselves to make SIGUCCS such a success.”

Leila C. Lyons

  • Co-Presenter, USC 1984, 1986, 1999
  • Presenter, CSMS 1992
  • Newsletter Co-Editor, 1991-1993
  • Program Review Committee, USC 1988, USC 2001
  • Program Chair, USC 1989, USC 2000, CSMS 2004
  • Conference Chair (Elect), CSMS 2005

Leila C. Lyons graduated from City University, London, lyonsEngland in 1967 with a B.Sc. in Applied Mathematics. After moving with her family to the United States in 1974, she started working part-time for the University of Delaware’s Computing Center. Since that time she has held positions of increasing responsibility for evolving support services in computing and information technology. She has been Director of User Services in Information Technologies since 1992. In this position she is responsible for delivering high quality support services for the University community in the following areas: research data management; desktop computing; computing site operation and departmental computing; instructional support and information services; and support for faculty use of technology in teaching and learning.

Leila has been an active member of ACM SIGUCCS since the early ’80s when she was introduced to the organization by Jane Caviness. She also served on EDUCOM’s Member Nominating Committee and was a member of the Program Committee for the EDUCOM 1997 Conference. She strongly encourages her User Services’ staff to become actively involved in SIGUCCS in order to learn from their peers, share their experience, and extend their professional network.

Dennis Mar

  • Conference Co-Chair USC 1997
  • Committee USC 1993, 1998, 1999, 2000

marIf one gets out of life in proportion to what one puts into it, then Dennis Mar must have put a lot into SIGUCCS because what he got out of SIGUCCS was his wife Susan. They met at the 1993 San Diego conference and were married two years later (but not at the SIGUCCS hospitality suite!!)

Dennis became a SIGUCCS enthusiast because unlike other technical organizations SIGUCCS people understood that computing was not only bits, bytes and bandwidth. Computing has an equally important human component that must be understood. For example, he once heard in a session that software training classes for faculty should not be called “software training classes” but “seminars”.

Dennis co-chaired one conference and worked at others as a session chair, newsletter editor and international attendee host. He encouraged people to use the SIGUCCS listserv to exchange ideas, agitated for ice cream socials, engaged in random conversations with anyone standing alone, and distributed balsa gliders for the fun of it.

Dennis worked in user services at the Naval Postgraduate School from 1980 to 1999. He had a perfect conference attendance record from 1984 (Reno) to 1999 (Denver). He holds a BA in mathematics and an MS in statistics. Anything about computers he learned on the job or SIGUCCS.

His advice to SIGUCCS newcomers is (1) remember Diane Jung’s admonition that “Heroic effort is not a sustainable model”, (2) expect to meet at least six professional colleagues you will feel comfortable seeking advice from in the coming year, and (3) go to sessions (especially Jerry Martin’s), take back the ideas as your own, and become a leader at work.

He only regrets that newcomers will never know the fun of meeting Penny Crane.

Beth Ruffo

  • Committee USC 1993, 1997, 1999, 2001
  • Presenter USC 1988, 1991, 1994, 1999
  • State Captains Chair (many years, she invented it)

ruffoBeth Ruffo came to Syracuse University in 1986 with experience and education in Marketing/Business Administration. She was a key player in Faculty Academic Computing Support Services (FACSS) in its various permutations to its present form. Her talents and energy were dedicated to helping faculty infuse computer technology into the teaching/learning process at Syracuse University.

During her 16 years with FACSS Beth served as Events Coordinator, multimedia trainer and consultant, project manager, Coordinator of Consultants, and, finally, as Manager of FACSS. Her professionalism was exemplary. An enduring event which she coordinated for 14 years is the annual Teaching Tools Conference, the purpose of which has been to share computing advances among local academic institutions. As a consultant and trainer, Beth’s cheerfulness, attention to detail, and her ability to pull together just the right team to ensure faculty success with technology made her a familiar and revered figure across the SU campus. Most recently as Manager of FACSS, she spearheaded the choice and adoption of the Blackboard e-Learning System at SU. Her foresight and efforts have culminated in the implementation of Blackboard 6 Enterprise across the entire campus.

For Beth, the annual ACM/SIGUCCS conference was always one of the highlights of the year. Here too she grew from participant to presenter to committee member. Whatever her role, she infused it with her friendliness, humor, team spirit, energy, and enthusiasm.

Beth was irrepressible; she loved a good story, a good laugh, and a good time. Above all, she had the grace of the common touch—she was comfortable with everyone and made everyone else comfortable in her presence. Her door stood open; she was always ready to lend ear, heart, hand or tongue to help colleagues and friends. She was a thoughtful manager, an inspiring colleague, and a loyal friend.

Her sudden death in November, 2002, elicited tributes from all over the nation. The comments below are a representative sample.

“Beth was a singular and special person, who touched many of us.”

“It was a privilege to have known her over the years and I will always appreciate her thoughtfulness and dedication to the university.”

“Beth was wonderful and always went above and beyond the call to help me. A bright spot lost for sure.”

Vincent H. Swoyer

  • Editor 1973-74
  • Secretary/Treasurer 1975-77

swoyerVincent Swoyer was Vice President, Corporate Systems, Sara Lee Corporation, from 1982 until retiring in 1994. From 1978 to 1982, he served as Vice President, Ryder System corporation in Miami, Florida. In his retirement, he has served as a consultant and research advisor for IBM, EDS, and the Concours Group.

Prior to this business experience he was Director, Computing Center, University of Rochester, from 1959 to 1978. He was also a faculty member, teaching courses in statistics, numerical analysis, and computer science. During 1961-62 he was on leave from the university as an IBM Research Fellow at Harvard University, during which time he developed a number of new statistical systems in the areas of regression analysis and the design of experiments, and was also responsible for establishing Harvard’s computing center. During another leave in 1969-70, Dr. Swoyer was a program director at the National Science Foundation in Washington, D.C., awarding grants supporting computer developments to more than 30 colleges and universities. He is author of several books and reports on computer operations, statistical applications, and computer usage in research, and served on the computer advisory panel for the National Academy of Science, and as a consultant to the Office of Management and Budget.

He was active with the newly organized Association for Computing Machinery in the late 1950’s, and was a founder of the Rochester, NY chapter of the ACM and served as its second president. In succeeding years he was an organizer of the ACM special interest group for university computing centers (SIGUCC), served as editor of its newsletter, and was a frequent speaker at SIGUCC meetings.

Because of research interest in early computer operations, he co-authored a series of surveys of university computing centers beginning in 1959, when there were only about 20 known to exist. By 1963, the number of computing centers had grown exponentially to more than 200, and the survey project became impossible to conduct in the time available, and was passed on to an educational agency. During 1990 and 1991, he conducted a study of the viability of personal computers to supplant mainframe computing activities, which was presented to a meeting of the international Conference Board. It included a timeframe for anticipated improvements in PC power and capabilities, and led to an annual series of technology status reports and forecasts presented to Conference Board members through 1999.

He now lives in Lake Bluff, Illinois, where he conducts research and builds computers in his computer laboratory.

J. Michael Yohe

  • Conference Chair CSMS 2003
  • Program Chair CSMS 2002
  • Program Chair CSMS 1996
  • Program Chair CSMS 1989
  • Presenter USC 1994, 1995, 2000

yoheJ. Michael “Mike” Yohe is currently Executive Director of Electronic Information Services at Valparaiso University, a position he has held since 1996. Prior to that, he served in similar positions at the University of Northern Iowa and Bradley University, and as Director of Academic Computing at the University of Wisconsin – Eau Claire.
In his current position, he is responsible for strategic planning and oversight of computing, data networking, the telephone system, video services, and instructional media for the University.

Yohe began his computing career in 1957, when he was in the U. S. Air Force stationed at the Pentagon. During graduate school, he worked for the Mathematics Research Center at the University of Wisconsin – Madison, where he began by writing computer programs for research mathematicians and eventually managed the computing operation for several years. He began his career in college and university computing management in 1978.

Yohe holds a Ph.D. in theoretical mathematics from the University of Wisconsin – Madison, and a Bachelor’s degree from DePauw University.