Penny Crane Award 2001

2001 Penny Crane Award Recipient – John H. (Jack) Esbin

Jack EsbinIn 2016, Jack was recognized for his lifetime of service to SIGUCCS. He was presented with this accolade at the annual conference. The inscription of the memento gifted to Jack reads “Presented to Jack Esbin, Honoring his dedication to ACM SIGUCCS and his lifetime of service to the organization, its members, and its mission.” Thank you, Jack!

Jack Esbin has been a force in university environments, supporting the computing profession for many years. He began his university career at Illinois State University in 1965, moved to the University of Iowa, and then to the University of Toledo. He then held positions at the J. Preston Levis Regional Computer Center and the City of Toledo, Ohio. He returned to the University of Toledo in 1995 serving as their Director of Administrative Computing and then as the Director of the Year 2000 Project. He retired in 2000.

Jack has received several awards including two NSF Fellowships and the ACM Outstanding Contribution Award, and was elected an ACM Fellow in 1993.

Jack has been a member of ACM and SIGUCCS since 1968. He enthusiastically supports SIGUCCS and ACM and is devoted to making these organizations successful. His extensive involvement with these organizations includes serving for many years on the ACM SIG Board as Chair, Vice-Chair and Council Member; ACM Treasurer; SIGUCCS Newsletter Editor; SIGUCCS Treasurer; Chair of both the SIGUCCS User Services Conference and the Computer Center Management Symposium; Chair of the SIGUCCS Peer Review Committee; and twice Chair of SIGUCCS.

Thoughts from Jack: In 1967 I accepted a position as the Assistant Director of the Computer Center at the University of Iowa, while also taking graduate courses in Computer Science there. Gerry Weeg, who was both my boss in the computer center and my Computer Science advisor, told me that I should absolutely
join ACM if I intended to continue in my profession. When I looked at the ACM Special Interest Group options then available, I noticed that there wasone devoted to the issues of computing centers, so I joined SIGUCCS as well. That was the smartest decision of my entire career.

I soon met people in SIGUCCS who were not only nationally known in the field
(in those days, some were pioneers in the profession), but who were friendly
and more than willing to share both ideas and information they had gathered,
not to mention discussing problems of mutual concern. Over the years I
personally grew in knowledge and experience, and I attribute much of that to
the sound advice and mentoring I received from those SIGUCCS contacts.

Today, exactly the same kind of mentoring and support is available through
SIGUCCS. In fact, the general topics discussed have changed surprisingly
little, even though the technology and approaches to problem solutions have
matured so significantly. I cannot conceive of a successful career in our
field without membership in SIGUCCS. Try it, and you’ll be so happy that
you did.