Announcing Jeannette Wing as New PI of the Northeast Big Data Innovation Hub

Jeannette M. Wing

We’re very pleased to announce today that Jeannette M. Wing will become the Principal Investigator of the Northeast Big Data Innovation Hub.

Dr. Wing is the Avanessians Director of the Data Science Institute at Columbia University, where she oversees the Institute’s research, educational, and innovation programs. Wing, who is also a Professor of Computer Science at Columbia, has a distinguished scholarly career with a focus on trustworthy computing, specification and verification, concurrent and distributed systems, programming languages, and software engineering. Her current interests are in the foundations of security and privacy, with a new focus on trustworthy AI. She is deeply committed to promoting “data for good,” by advancing the foundations of data science and encouraging its ethical and responsible application for the benefit of society. Before joining Columbia, Wing was Corporate Vice President of Microsoft Research, overseeing a global network of research labs.

Wing succeeds Kathleen R. McKeown as the Principal Investigator for the Hub, following her nomination by McKeown and a unanimous vote of support from the Hub’s Executive Committee. McKeown is the Henry and Gertrude Rothschild Professor of Computer Science at Columbia University, and has previously served as Director of the Data Science Institute and Department Chair for Computer Science at Columbia. She is stepping down from her role at the Hub as she goes on sabbatical this year. The Hub is deeply grateful for her tremendous leadership as our founding Principal Investigator during its formation and early years of activity.

“I’m very happy to have been part of the inaugural period of the Hub and have greatly enjoyed working with this community,” McKeown said. “During this period, we forged many partnerships across sectors, including supporting a total of seven Big Data Spokes and planning projects to date, as well as laying the foundation for new initiatives developed by the Hub itself. I look forward to hearing about the continued success of the Hub as time goes on, and invite you to join me in welcoming Jeannette!”

Wing shared the following remarks with our community:

“I am delighted to serve as PI for the Northeast Big Data Innovation Hub and, along with René Bastón and Katie Naum, build on the solid foundation laid down by Kathy McKeown. As the recent organizer of the first Data Science Leadership Summit, I care deeply about how data science can grow at our respective universities and colleges, how we can work together, share best practices, and put the field on a rigorous footing with broad applicability. I am very much looking forward to working with the NE hub and spokes, our external partners, and our counterparts in the other three hubs to help promote data science research and education at all of our respective campuses and to sustain this important community effort.”

René Bastón, executive director for the Northeast Big Data Innovation Hub, noted, “It has been a great privilege and pleasure to work with Kathy McKeown. It’s difficult to express how fortunate we’ve been to have had her as our founding PI.  Her contributions have been invaluable in establishing and growing the Hub. At the same time, I find myself in the happy circumstance of welcoming another outstanding PI for the Hub. Under Jeannette’s leadership, I’m confident that we’ll build upon our successes and enhance our ability to develop cross-sector partnerships that deliver impactful, data-driven solutions to big challenges.”

Launched in late 2015, the Northeast Big Data Innovation Hub builds partnerships with industry, academia, government and non-profit organizations to address high-priority challenges with big data resources and solutions.

– Katie Naum