Vinton G. Cerf
PCI Founding Chairman
Widely known as one of the “Fathers of the Internet,” Vint Cerf is the co-designer of the TCP/IP protocols and the architecture of the Internet. In December 1997, President Clinton presented the U.S. National Medal of Technology to Cerf and his colleague, Robert E. Kahn, for founding and developing the Internet. Kahn and Cerf were named the recipients of the ACM Alan M. Turing award in 2004 for their work on the Internet protocols. The Turing award is sometimes called the “Nobel Prize of Computer Science.” In November 2005, President George Bush awarded Cerf and Kahn the Presidential Medal of Freedom for their work. The medal is the highest civilian award given by the United States to its citizens. In April 2008, Cerf and Kahn received the prestigious Japan Prize.
Prior to rejoining MCI in 1994, Cerf was vice president of the Corporation for National Research Initiatives (CNRI). As vice president of MCI Digital Information Services from 1982-1986, he led the engineering of MCI Mail, the first commercial email service to be connected to the Internet. During his tenure from 1976-1982 with the U.S. Department of Defense’s Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), Cerf played a key role leading the development of Internet and Internet-related packet data and security technologies.
Vint Cerf served as chairman of the board of the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) from 2000-2007. Cerf also served as founding president of the Internet Society from 1992-1995 and in 1999 served a term as Chairman of the Board. In addition, Cerf is honorary chairman of the IPv6 Forum, dedicated to raising awareness and speeding introduction of the new Internet protocol. Cerf served as a member of the U.S. Presidential Information Technology Advisory Committee (PITAC) from 1997 to 2001 and serves on several national, state and industry committees focused on cyber-security. Cerf sits on the Board of Directors for the Endowment for Excellence in Education, the Americas Registry for Internet Numbers (ARIN), CosmosID, StopBadWare, the Gorilla Foundation and the Intaba Institute (for the Deaf). Cerf also sits on the Board of Associates of Gallaudet University. He serves on the Jet Propulsion Laboratory Advisory Committee and serves as Chair of the Visitors Committee on Advanced Technology of the U.S. National Institute of Standards and Technology. He also serves as 1st Vice President and Treasurer of the National Science & Technology Medals Foundation. Cerf is a Fellow of the IEEE, ACM, and American Association for the Advancement of Science, the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the International Engineering Consortium, the Computer History Museum, the Annenberg Center for Communications at USC, the Swedish Royal Academy of Engineering, the American Philosophical Society, the Hasso Platner Institute and is a member of the US National Academy of Engineering. In 2011, he was made Distinguished Fellow of the British Computer Society.
Cerf is a recipient of numerous awards and commendations in connection with his work on the Internet. These include the Marconi Fellowship, Charles Stark Draper award of the National Academy of Engineering, the Prince of Asturias award for science and technology, the National Medal of Science from Tunisia, the St. Cyril and St. Methodius Order (Grand Cross) of Bulgaria, the Alexander Graham Bell Award presented by the Alexander Graham Bell Association for the Deaf, the NEC Computer and Communications Prize, the Silver Medal of the International Telecommunications Union, the IEEE Alexander Graham Bell Medal, the IEEE Koji Kobayashi Award, the ACM Software and Systems Award, the ACM SIGCOMM Award, the Computer and Communications Industries Association Industry Legend Award, installation in the Inventors Hall of Fame, the Yuri Rubinsky Web Award, the Kilby Award , the Rotary Club International Paul P. Harris Medal, the Joseph Priestley Award from Dickinson College, the Yankee Group/Interop/Network World Lifetime Achievement Award, the George R. Stibitz Award, the Werner Wolter Award, the Andrew Saks Engineering Award, the IEEE Third Millennium Medal, the Computerworld/Smithsonian Leadership Award, the J.D. Edwards Leadership Award for Collaboration, World Institute on Disability Annual Award and the Library of Congress Bicentennial Living Legend medal. Cerf was inducted into the National Inventors Hall of Fame in May 2006. He was made an Eminent Member of the IEEE Eta Kappa Nu (HKN) honor society in 2009. In 2010 he received a Lifetime Webby Award. In February 2011 he was named a Stanford Engineering School “Hero” for his work on the Internet and received a lifetime achievement award from the Oxford Internet Institute. In December 1994, People magazine identified Cerf as one of that year’s “25 Most Intriguing People.”
He has served as vice president and chief Internet evangelist for Google since October 2005. In this role, he is responsible for identifying new enabling technologies to support the development of advanced, Internet-based products and services from Google. He is also an active public face for Google in the Internet world.
In addition to his work on behalf of Google and the Internet, Cerf has served as a technical advisor to production for “Gene Roddenberry’s Earth: Final Conflict” and made a special guest appearance on the program in May 1998. Cerf has appeared on television programs NextWave with Leonard Nimoy and often co-hosted World Business Review with Alexander Haig and Caspar Weinberger. Cerf also holds an appointment as distinguished visiting scientist at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory where he is working on the design of an interplanetary Internet. Cerf holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Mathematics from Stanford University and Master of Science and Ph.D. degrees in Computer Science from UCLA. He also holds honorary Doctorate degrees from the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH), Zurich; Lulea University of Technology, Sweden; University of the Balearic Islands, Palma; Capitol College, Maryland; Gettysburg College, Pennsylvania; George Mason University, Virginia; Rovira i Virgili University, Tarragona, Spain; Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Troy, New York; the University of Twente, Enschede, The Netherlands; Brooklyn Polytechnic; Marymount University; the University of Pisa; the Beijing University of Posts and Telecommunications; Tschingua University, Beijing, China; the University of Zaragoza, Spain; the Technical University of Cartagena, Spain; the Polytechnic University of Madrid, Spain; Bethany College, Kansas; the Moscow State University of International Relations and the Buenos Aires Institute of Technology.
His personal interests include fine wine, gourmet cooking and science fiction. Cerf and his wife, Sigrid, were married in 1966 and have two sons, David and Bennett.
In 2018, following the devastation of hurricanes Irma and Maria in Puerto Rico, People-Centered Internet fielded a team of experts, working with the RAND Corporation, to offer recommendations for leveraging the Internet for the archipelago’s recovery plan. This initiative followed extensive disaster response work by PCI community member, Melvin Cordova, through his “Project Coqui.” PCI team members — including Marci Harris, Mei Lin Fung, and Lin Wells — traveled multiple times to Puerto Rico to engage with local business leaders, innovators, academics, and policymakers. They also participated in a knowledge-exchange trip, organized by Mei Lin Fung, for leaders from Puerto Rico to visit Singapore and engage with their counterparts in business, government, and academia to learn from Singapore’s post-colonial transformation. PCI’s work culminated in 11 recommendations (courses of action or “COAs”) for leveraging federal programs and private resources for Puerto Rico’s recovery and were included in the plan submitted to Congress.
American political scientist, Ian Bremmer, joined Internet pioneer and PCI co-founder, Vint Cerf for an inaugural “virtual fireside chat” to discussed today’s evolving geopolitical and technological landscape. The two explored how our increasingly interconnected world is changing dynamics among countries, challenging international institutions, and (at least temporarily) benefitting authoritarian regimes. The globe faces challenges —
People-Centered Internet invites you to a “virtual fireside chat,” featuring Ian Bremmer and PCI co-founder, Vint Cerf, at 2:00 PM ET on February 25, 2020. In a 2016 paper produced for the International Monetary Fund, Ian predicted “G-Zero,” a time characterized by “a growing vacuum in global governance,” and asked “whether citizens across the world will remain passive
Dear Internauts, As the new year approaches, we have some news to share. PCI’s Chair, Vint Cerf, will take on new responsibilities at Google that require his full-time attention and PCI’s Executive Director, David Bray, will take on a new role with the Atlantic Council focused on “think and do” actions with exciting details to
CXOTALK with Vint Cerf, David Bray, and Michael Krigsman on “The Future of the Internet and Why More People-Centered Efforts Are Needed”
CxOTalk host Michael Krigsman recently invited People-Centered Internet’s chairman Vint Cerf and Executive Director Dr. David Bray to discuss the future of the Internet, the interplanetary Internet, the importance of open protocols to society, transparency and the Internet, where the Internet came from and where is it going, and why more people-centered efforts are needed.