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A 2012 IBM Fellow, she is the 13th woman (and is among only seventeen women) to achieve this, the highest honor a scientist, engineer, or programmer at IBM can achieve. Her winding journey to becoming an IBM Fellow began with her decision to leave her native Ukraine. She states, "In the late 1970s and early 1980s, there was a short window of opportunity when the Soviet Union allowed people of Jewish descent to emigrate to the West. My family is of Jewish heritage. I wanted to escape state-sponsored persecution of Jews and I knew I'd have more opportunity outside of the Soviet Union. I was young and had no fear. It was hard to leave my parents, but I knew it was the right decision." With a two-year-old daughter in tow, she moved to the United States, first settling in Maryland. She waited tables to make ends meet while earning a degree in Computer Science at the University of Maryland. She continued her graduate studies at George Washington University. "My English was poor, so it wasn't easy. But I was very determined and carried my Russian-English dictionary everywhere," she said. "I had a great love for math and science I had inherited from my father, who was a machinist and loved to do math brain teasers with me." After walking away from an initial job opportunity at IBM, she worked for several smaller IT firms as a Solutions Architect before joining IBM's services arm. She joined IBM's fledgling business innovation services, working on first-of-a-kind on demand, e-business and grid computing solutions for clients in various industries. She helped establish IBM's presence in these new market segments. She spearheaded, co-invented and was the chief evangelist behind the development and deployment of the Service-Oriented Modeling and Architecture (SOMA), the industry's first SOA modeling method. IBM services practitioners use it to architect solutions in a consistent repeatable way. Other areas where she has made significant contributions include Rivers-for-Tomorrow, Situational Applications Environment, The Genographic Project and IBM Virtual Spaces. She has played a leading role in IBM's entry into new market segments, and her groundbreaking research has helped IBM and its clients improve their internal operations while supporting growth in the marketplace. A mentor, teacher and sponsor, she is a highly regarded technical leader whose expertise is sought by customers and technical practitioners alike. She has held various roles at IBM, including architecting first-of-a-kind e-business and grid computing solutions for clients in various industries. She helped establish IBM's presence in these new market segments, as well as in the security services. She has also been at the forefront of IBM's transition into a social business. Her groundbreaking research has helped IBM and its clients improve their internal operations while supporting growth in the marketplace. In her current role as the Vice President of the MobileFirst Technology Innovation in the IBM Global Technology Services, she is a driving force behind the creation and use of emerging technologies that have enabled the business transformation of both IBM and its clients. Recently, she took on a new corporate role as the Director of Technology Evaluation, where she works with other technical leaders across IBM to identify disruptive technologies and to align the company's technical muscle behind IBM's key growth plays. She has been at the forefront of IBM's transition into a social business. Many of the On Demand Workplace features IBMers use on a daily basis—from expertise locator to w3 tagging to media library—are her handiwork along with the CIO innovation team she led for several years. One of her personal favorites: Faces, a popular people search tool and first IBM application to employ Hadoop, the Java-based distributed platform which, she boasts have, "More than 130,000 distinct users a month. Once employees try it, they love it." she said. She and her avatar became well known in IBM Virtual Spaces and she often speaks to clients about how social software and virtual worlds can promote collaboration across a global enterprise. She has used her expertise in 3-D technology and spatial modeling in the IBM partnership with The Nature Conservancy on the Rivers for Tomorrow Project, a site where watershed managers can model and analyze the health of local freshwater river basins. She is a three-time recipient of the IBM Outstanding Technical Achievement Award and a recipient of the IBM Corporate Award – the highest technical award for unique technical contributions of superior business value. She is also a member of the IEEE Computer Society, the Society of Women Engineers and the Association for Computing Machinery. She is a sought after speaker and a widely quoted author, with multiple internal and external publications and patents to her name. She was profiled by traditional and web media, including CIO magazine, GovInfo Security news, Manager Monthly magazine and ZDNet.
Noted For:Co-inventor and chief evangelist behind the development and deployment of the Service-Oriented Modeling and Architecture (SOMA), the industry's first SOA modeling method
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