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Torczon Receives Women in Computing Award
Source: Rice News, May 27, 1999

Rice computer scientist Linda Torczon, executive director of the Center for Research on Parallel Computation, has been named one of the Top 20 Houston Women in Technology by the Houston Chapter of the Association for Women in Computing (AWC).

She will receive the award at an AWC presentation on June 11, the first award banquet of its kind in Houston. Other recipients of the award, not available at press time, include executives and leaders from such Houston companies as Enron, Shell, Compaq and Coca-Cola.

"I think it's very important for communities, "Torczon said, "whether it be through this organization or others, to recognize women who have done very well in technology fields." There are not enough young women choosing technology fields, she said. "Whether it be in technology, or petroleum engineering, or another technical field, we need to let young women know that these women [leaders] exist and that they are real people if we want the youth to really consider these fields for careers."

Recipients of the award must work in the Houston metropolitan area, have at least 10 years experience in the computer industry or academia, provide a positive role model for women, show significant career accomplishments and serve in upper management or be tenured.

Torczon, a research scientist in the Department of Computer Science, is one of the principal investigators on the Massively Scalar Compiler Project at Rice and the project director of an effort funded by the state of Texas to study compiler-based optimization of non-numerical code. Her research interests include code generation and optimization, interprocedural data-flow analysis and optimization and programming environments.

She is co-holder of a patent involving efficient computer register allocation, used to rapidly store and access data; she has published numerous technical papers; and she is an active member of professional organizations in the high-performance computing community.

As the CRPC executive director since 1990, Torczon manages extensive research efforts, education and outreach programs and technology transfer. She has been involved in a number of programs aimed at increasing the number of women and underrepresented minorities entering mathematics and science-related fields, including K-12 training programs for teachers and workshops that encourage students to pursue careers in technical fields.

Torczon is a Rice University graduate with a bachelor's of science in chemical engineering (1980), a master's of science in computer science (1984), and a doctorate in computer science (1985).

The AWC is a not-for-profit organization for information technology professionals. The Houston chapter's mission is to provide for the technical professional development of computing specialists and to provide a network that is a source of education, expert information and, career opportunities for its members.