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Ceci Jones Schrock
Indiana University Office of the Vice President for Information Technology and CIO
ccjones@indiana.edu
812-856-2337

Last modified: Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Schopf takes helm as IUís director of international networking

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Aug. 14, 2013

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. -- Indiana University has named Jennifer M. Schopf as its new director of international networking. Schopf officially joined the Office of the Vice President for Information Technology and CIO on Aug. 1 to lead IU's advanced, high-performance networking efforts around the world. She succeeds James G. Williams, IU's first director of international networking, who is retiring after a 30-year career at the university.

Jennifer Schopf

Jennifer Schopf

Print-Quality Photo

Schopf brings a wealth of expertise in high-performance computing, distributed systems and international networking. She previously served as a program officer at the National Science Foundation, where she jointly led the EarthCube program and initiatives for international networks, distributed systems and pragmatic software. She was also a member of the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution's Ocean Informatics team, where she assisted with cyberinfrastructure planning across the institute. Before this, she spent seven years as a scientist in the mathematics and computer science division at Argonne National Laboratory.

Schopf also spent more than three years as a researcher at the National e-Science Center in Edinburgh, U.K. She was a member of the Globus Alliance, the director for the SciDAC Center for Enabling Distributed Petascale Science, technology coordinator for the Globus Monitoring and Discovery System, and director of outreach for Globus.

"Dr. Schopf is eminently qualified to lead this highly critical role for research and education networks," said Brad Wheeler, IU vice president for information technology and CIO. "Throughout her impressive career, she has demonstrated an excellent ability to lead while also building a record of many successful collaborations. She possesses a solid foundation of network and scientific knowledge and is well traveled and familiar with the world's changing political scene -- all of which are important as we seek to build relationships with scientists and governments around the world."

Schopf is taking over the role held by Williams, who has led over $17 million of international networking grants for the university, including IU's present role operating NSF-funded links to Asia, China and Europe.

"Jim Williams has been a stellar worldwide ambassador for Indiana University and the frontiers of collaborative research," Wheeler said. "His name is synonymous with trust and confidence in international relations for the complex world of high-performance networks."

Schopf earned her M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in computer science and engineering from the University of California, San Diego. Her doctoral advisor was Francine Berman, an internationally renowned computer scientist and leader in cyberinfrastructure.

"Jennifer's education, experience and record make her ideal to take the helm of IU's vast international networking endeavors," said David E. Jent, IU associate vice president of networks. "She understands that international networking is about relationships, and that successful collaborations are about talking to people and speaking their language. With her vast scientific and professional background, Jennifer will take IU international networking to even greater heights."

Schopf began her career as an assistant professor in the computer science department at Northwestern University, where she taught classes in operating systems, distributed systems and grid computing. At IU, she will use her experience and scientific background -- not to mention her communication skills and vast network -- to support international collaborations.

"I've spent much of my career having conversations with people, building collaborations and bridging people and groups," Schopf said. "I understand end-user needs, and I can translate them for developers and programmers in a way that results in success. I'm thrilled to begin this new chapter at IU. Jim has done a fantastic job ensuring that the basic networking infrastructure is in place. One of my first goals is determining how to build the next level of service."

International networking at IU is dedicated to connecting global researchers and scientists through state-of-the-art, multi-gigabit networking services. To that end, IU operates and manages two networking projects, TransPAC3 and America Connects to Europe.

TransPAC3 connects U.S. researchers with colleagues across Asia, while ACE connects scientists and students to their counterparts in the European Union. Along with support from the NSF, IU international networking funds TransPAC3 in cooperation with its Internet2 and China Next Generation Internet partners. DANTE is the European partner for ACE (also funded in part by the NSF), making balanced contributions to bandwidth and operations. IU experts also lead networking workshops around the world.

A video interview with Schopf is available online.