2018 Leadership Award Recipient

Richard Katz

Richard N. Katz

Founder and Principal, Richard N. Katz and Associates


For unparalleled impact and influence in higher education information technology; for developing groundbreaking initiatives, such as ECAR, which provides leading-edge insights for IT leaders, decision-makers, and practitioners seeking to advance the profession; for being a consummate bridge-builder between people, institutions, and organizations in the United States and globally

The 2018 EDUCAUSE Leadership Award is given to Richard N. Katz, Founder and Principal of Richard N. Katz and Associates, to recognize his extraordinary leadership and contributions to the IT profession and the greater higher education community. Richard’s impact not only has shaped the direction of information technology in higher education but also has influenced the careers of generations of IT professionals and aspirants in the United States and around the world.

In his early career, Richard advanced through the ranks at the University of California’s Office of the President, culminating in his appointment as Executive Director of Business Planning and Practices. His broad experience in the management of financial, IT, and administrative services laid the groundwork for the future work he would do as a strategic thinker and leader for both CAUSE and EDUCAUSE. Under his leadership, the University of California received international recognition for innovations in accountability, capital programs, human resources and financial accounting. Richard received numerous awards including the Olsten Prize for innovation in 1986. In the footsteps of UC President Jack W. Peltason, Richard became the second recipient of UC’s Award for Innovative Management and Leadership in 1996.

While Richard was widely known throughout UC and through his many speeches and publications as a volunteer with CAUSE, Educom, and NACUBO, many in the IT community got to know him best as vice president of CAUSE, the organization that merged with Educom in 1998 to form EDUCAUSE. Richard was, in many ways, the face—perhaps even the heart and soul—of CAUSE, and his genuine passion for the work of the association led many IT leaders and staff to find a professional home in CAUSE. As vice president at EDUCAUSE after the merger, Richard continued to cultivate EDUCAUSE as a member-driven organization, demonstrating his mastery in community building. Richard took pride and pleasure in catalyzing connections between people and organizations that might not otherwise find each other. He was a kindling force in all aspects of the growth and development of EDUCAUSE; his executive oversight included the EDUCAUSE annual conference, EDUCAUSE Review and EDUCAUSE Quarterly, and the association’s technology operations, professional development, corporate relations, and research. Richard’s leadership provided EDUCAUSE a solid foundation for its continuing growth in its conferences, publications, and corporate relations functions. Among his most significant contributions to EDUCAUSE was his founding of the EDUCAUSE Center for Applied Research (ECAR), the research arm for the association to study the management, use, and impact of information technology on higher education and to provide colleges and universities with practical information to support their decision-making.

Following his fourteen years with CAUSE and EDUCAUSE, Richard has worked with trustees and regents, policy makers, faculty leaders, and staff in university systems and all segments of higher education throughout the United States and internationally. He has made a significant contribution to higher education through his extensive service on a number of corporate, university, and association governing and advisory boards, including those for Ashford University, the Corporation for Education Network Initiatives in California (CENIC), the Ellucian Executive Advisory Council, the IBM Higher Education Policy Council, the New Media Consortium (NMC), and the Syracuse University School of Information Studies. He has generously shared his expertise by delivering more than 200 keynote addresses and has written or edited seven books—including the groundbreaking Dancing with the Devil (1999) and The Tower and the Cloud (2008)—and more than 75 articles, monographs, and book chapters. Richard’s videos “EDU@2020” (2007), “EDU@2025” (2012), and “Edifice Rex: The Place of Place” (2014) are examples of how his work transcends information technology to raise awareness of higher education’s role in building lives of impact.

Richard Katz personifies what it means to be a leader, visionary, innovator, scholar, and entrepreneur in higher education, and he is most deserving of the EDUCAUSE Leadership Award. He has been both a beacon and a bridge-builder in our community, and his influence is evident in the many individuals and institutions that have benefited from the wisdom, guidance, and inspiration he has provided in his capacity as an advisor to higher education.

The EDUCAUSE Leadership Award recipient receives a $1,500 contribution to the fund of their choice. A contribution in Richard's name will be made to Syracuse University iSchool.

This EDUCAUSE Award is sponsored by Moran Technology Consulting, Gold Partner.