Chittoor V. Ramamoorthy, Ph.D at SDPS 2010

Former Professor and Department Chair
Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering
The University of Texas, Austin

Professor Emeritus
Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science
University of California, Berkeley

Centennial and Millennium Medal Laureate
IEEE Life Fellow
Institute for Electrical and Electronic Engineering

Founding Board Member and Chairman
SDPS Fellow
SES Transformative Achievement Medal Laureate
Society for Design and Process Science

Dr. Ramamoorthy was not able to attend our 20th Anniversary Conference in Fort Worth, Texas, November 1-5, 2015. However, Dr. Raymond T. Yeh, honored him with a tribute speech during the SDPS 2015 Gala Awards Banquet. At the end of his talk, Dr. Yeh spoke these final words describing Dr. Ram. The last line has been changed to fit this solemn occasion:

Dr. Ram: Meaning Maker

Joy, love, humor and laughter,
From your expressions our world is much happier.
A teacher, friend, pioneer, and mentor,
From your examples our world is much wiser.
A husband, father, grandfather, and meaning maker,
From your actions our world is much kinder.
Our respect for you is simply immense.
Innovation for you is just play and
Kindness comes deep from your heart.
If nothing else, we've learned this from you:
“Laughter is the best medicine”
To an exemplary trans-disciplinarian,
May you rest in peace and may joy abound!
Raymond T. Yeh
In Memoriam

Chittoor V. Ramamoorthy, Ph.D


It is with great sorrow that our Society announces the death of Professor C. V. Ramamoorthy on March 9, 2016. Dr. Ramamoorthy was a loving husband and father, brilliant teacher, and pioneering engineer. He was a kind, benevolent, gentle soul—always polite and considerate to everyone. He was both friend and mentor to many people and one of the wisest men we have ever known. His exemplary life will serve as our compass in building this new Society. We mourn his passing and extend our condolences to his family, friends and associates. The mark he made upon this world will long be remembered.

Dr. Ramamoorthy was a true pioneer of the discipline of software engineering, making important contributions to not only software engineering but also distributed and parallel computation and computer architecture. Dr. Ramamoorthy was a founding Board member of SDPS and was the guiding mentor for generations of SDPS members and contributors. SDPS owes a great debt of gratitude to this remarkable man and his memory.

He was born in May of 1926 in Burma, but educated in India and the U.S. He held six earned degrees: two undergraduate degrees, one in physics and one in textile technology from the University of Madras, India; two graduate degrees in Mechanical Engineering from the University of California, Berkeley, and two graduate degrees from Harvard University, one in Applied Mathematics and a Ph.D in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science. He later went to The University of Texas at Austin as a Professor of Electrical Engineering and ultimately became Chair of the Computer Science Department, becoming the third person to hold that position. He also became a Senior Research Fellow at the IC2 Institute of The University of Texas, Austin. Professor Ramamoorthy was the Education Chair of the American Federation of Information Processing Societies. He later moved to the University of California, Berkeley as a Professor of the Electrical Engineering and Computer Science Department, ultimately retiring as Professor Emeritus. He mentored 73 Ph.D students, many of whom are outstanding professors including three university presidents and a some who became CEOs. He published more than 200 papers and co-edited three books: the Handbook on Software Engineering, Pacific Computer Communications, and Computers for AI Processing.

Professor Ramamoorthy was very active in IEEE throughout his career. He was a Life Fellow of the IEEE. He was elected first Vice President of the IEEE Computer Society, and was its very first Vice President of Education. He served as the Founding Editor-in-Chief of the venerable IEEE Transactions on the Knowledge and Data Engineering and served as the Editor-in-Chief of the IEEE Transactions on Software Engineering. He received the following awards from the IEEE Computer Society: the Group Award in Education for Curriculum Development, the Taylor Booth Award in 1990 for outstanding contributions to education, the Richard Merwin Award in 1993 for his outstanding professional contributions, and the Golden Core Recognition given to Society members for their long-standing contributions and outstanding service. He was among the select few of IEEE's large membership to receive both the IEEE Centennial Medal in 1984, which marked the first hundred years of this great organization, and the IEEE Third Millennium Medal in 2000. In 2001, he was awarded the IEEE Computer Society's Hitachi-Kanai Award for fundamental contributions in parallel and distributed computing.

Professor Ramamoorthy played a vital role in the early formation of our Society. He served as a Founding Board Member and was later made Board Chairman, a position he held until his death. He was both a Founding Member and Fellow of SDPS. He received several SDPS awards beginning with the Raymond T. Yeh Distinguished Achievement Award in 2002 followed by the Herbert Simon Award in 2006. In 2006, SDPS also established the Ramamoorthy-Yeh Endowment, named after Professor Ramamoorthy and his close associate and life-long friend, Professor Raymond T. Yeh, in honor of their incredible accomplishments as scientist-engineers. At our historic 15th Anniversary Conference in Dallas in 2010, SDPS presented Professor Ramamoorthy its highest award: the SES Transformative Achievement Award for his outstanding contributions in software engineering. In 2014, he was included in the distinguished list of eight SDPS Visionaries whose far-reaching work and ideas inspired the formation of SDPS.

Beneath Professor Ramamoorthy's calm, unassuming demeanor lay both genius and an unwavering devotion to ethics. Above all was his fairness, caring and friendship. Dr. Ram spread joy where ever he went. He loved to laugh and celebrate life. He traveled extensively throughout his life and was truly admired and respected by his many colleagues and associates all over the world. We will miss our beloved “Dr. Ram.” May he be remembered forever.