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Earving L. Blythe

Earving L. Blythe

For advancing the interlocking systems of technical, financial, professional, social, and political processes that brought about fundamental and disruptive change.

Retired Vice President for Information Technology and CIO
Virginia Tech

Earving L. Blythe has been one of the foremost leaders in higher education IT, influencing change and new directions in the application of networking technology in higher education.

A unifying theme for Blythe’s accomplishments is his leadership across the interlocking systems of technical, financial, professional, social, and political processes that brought about a fundamental and disruptive change in how we use communications in higher education and beyond. Blythe has played a central role in the proliferation of modern broadband networking by coordinating and educating the stakeholders on his campus, in his profession, in state and local governments, and in industry about the fundamental, qualitative advantages of a new style of networking.

At the same time that Blythe was closely involved in the critical movement toward community-owned, facilities-based networks of regional and national scale, he also made strong contributions through white papers, conferences, and visits to the Hill and the Federal Communications Commission that had demonstrable impact on national policies and programs such as the FCC’s National Broadband Plan, the U.S. Broadband Technology Opportunities Program, and the proper consideration of scope and methods with regard to copyright issues and lawful surveillance on campus networks.

Blythe has repeatedly demonstrated a rare combination of brilliant creativity and pragmatic leadership to drive a long series of groundbreaking initiatives at Virginia Tech including network infrastructure and services; the Faculty Development Initiative Program; the Virginia Education and Research Network (VERnet); the renowned Blacksburg Electronic Village (BEV); NetworkVirginia (NWV); client-server migration of Virginia Tech’s administrative systems to an enterprise-wide, client-server–based resource; System X high performance computing; eCorridors; VT Technology Services and Operations; and more.

Blythe has served as a mentor and a trusted advisor to many of his colleagues at Virginia Tech. He fully recognizes the need for hands-on experience and mentoring to develop future generations of IT leaders. His passion for the university and people has generated tremendous enthusiasm, optimism, and trust in the IT organization across Virginia Tech.

Blythe has continually reinvented and transformed the application of information technology in ways that have enhanced teaching and learning, created competitive advantages for research, and facilitated outreach. His track record of achievement and his clear dedication to service at Virginia Tech have supported his continued leadership at the university over many decades, resulting in profound benefits to the university, to the Commonwealth of Virginia, and to our profession.

This award is sponsored by Moran Technology Consulting, An EDUCAUSE Silver Partner.

David G. Swartz

David G. Swartz

For advancing best practices in IT service management, strategic planning, project management, information security, technology operations, and enterprise infrastructure life-cycle planning.

Assistant Vice President and CIO
American University

David G. Swartz, assistant vice president and chief information officer at American University, is recognized for his dedication to demonstrating the value of information technology to fulfill the campus mission and for his overall service to the IT profession.

Throughout his career, Swartz has not feared change as an innovative way to improve IT services to the campus community, and his academic background in economics has served him well in making difficult decisions regarding the associated resource allocations. He understands the need for analytics to measure performance, track progress, and benchmark against peer institutions.

He has transformed the central IT organization at American University into a strategic business partner, enabling the effective and efficient use of technology by the institution. Incorporating fresh ideas and knowledge from past experiences, he successfully introduced industry-standard best practices in IT service management, strategic planning, project management, information security, technology operations, and enterprise infrastructure life-cycle planning. He was also among the first CIOs to understand the need for the role of the chief information security officer to build a strong security program at the institution, specifically, American University. Prior to joining American University he eliminated legacy stovepipe operations and centralized IT across George Washington University to leverage resources and target redundancies. His judicious use of outsourcing arrangements saved the university more than $1 million a year and improved service levels.

Swartz’s many contributions to the profession include serving as faculty at the EDUCAUSE Institute Leadership Program, as council member at the Hawkins Leadership Roundtable, and as the Higher Education Information Security Council (HEISC) Executive Committee Chair. He has demonstrated his wide knowledge of IT issues by speaking at and attended numerous EDUCAUSE conferences and meetings, authoring many publications, and presenting at a variety of venues. He is the recipient of honors and awards from IT authorities such as Computerworld, CIO Magazine, ACUTA, and ACM, as well as EDUCAUSE. He is dedicated to professional development of his staff, with an extraordinary one-to-one ratio for relevant professional certifications for each staff member.

Swartz’s accomplishments and ability to mentor those aspiring to senior IT positions in higher education make him one of the most respected leaders in the profession. As a popular speaker and esteemed colleague, his commitment to the value of information technology in higher education has helped not only the institutions he serves directly but also others across the community.

This award is sponsored by Moran Technology Consulting, An EDUCAUSE Silver Partner.

 

 

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