2017 Outstanding Achievement & Advocacy Awards

Ninth Annual Outstanding Achievement and Advocacy Awards Banquet 
Friday, April 28, 2017
Marriott Center, 11th Floor, Campus Center, UMass Amherst 

To recognize the remarkable accomplishments of graduates of the college's degree programs and to acknowledge the support of important friends of the college, the college established the University of Massachusetts Amherst College of Information and Computer Sciences Outstanding Achievement and Advocacy (OAA) Award program, under which awards are presented annually in various categories.


  • Outstanding Contributions to Society: Shashi Buluswar (UMass Amherst CS MS '95, PhD '02)
    CEO, Institute for Transformative Technologies 
  • Outstanding Achievement in Research: Jamie Callan (UMass Amherst CS MS '87, PhD '93)
    Professor of Computer Science, Carnegie Mellon University 
  • Outstanding Achievement in Management: Rajesh Jha (UMass Amherst CS MS '90)
    Corporate Vice President, Microsoft Office Live and Microsoft Exchange, Microsoft
  • Outstanding Achievement in Entrepreneurship: Tareef Kawaf (UMass Amherst CS, Math '94)
    President, RStudio 
  • Outstanding Achievement in Technology Development: Brian Kettler (UMass Amherst CS BS '87)
    Chief Scientist, LM Fellow, Lockheed Martin 
  • Outstanding Achievement by a Young Alum: Sarah Osentoski (UMass Amherst CS PhD '09), Co-founder and Chief Operating Officer, Mayfield Robotics

View 2017 OAA Award recipient bios


  • Outstanding Doctoral Dissertation Award: Charlie Curtsinger (Ph.D. '16)
  • Outstanding Doctoral Dissertation Award: Pengyu Zhang (Ph.D. '16)
  • Outstanding Synthesis Project Award: Stephen Giguere
  • Outstanding Synthesis Project Award:  Sofya Vorotnikova
  • Outstanding Teaching Assistant Award: Adarsh Rangaiah
  • Outstanding Teaching Assistant Award: Garrett Bernstein 

View list of prior OAA award recipients


3:00 - 4:00 p.m. Panel Discussion with our award recipients
Computer Science Building, CS 150/151
5:00 - 9:00 p.m. Reception and Awards Banquet
Marriott Center, 11th Floor of Campus Center


To R.S.V.P., please contact Tiffany Davis at 413-545-4230 or tdavis@cs.umass.edu, by April 14, 2017. 


The college has a block of rooms reserved at the Hotel UMass ($135/night + tax). To reserve a room, call 413.549.6000 or toll-free at 877.822.2110 and let them know that you reserving under the Computer Science Alumni Event (OAA17C). If reserving online, use the group code OAA17C. Rooms must be booked by March 31.

Other area accommodations


The OAA 2017 banquet will be held at the Marriott Center located on the 11th floor of the Campus Center (Amherst, MA). Parking is available in the Campus Center Garage, which is at the end of Campus Center Way. 

The afternoon panel session will be in the Computer Science Building; 140 Governors Drive, Amherst, MA.  Free parking is available in Lot 31 directly across from our main entrance.


Nominations for 2018 are now being accepted. Send your nominations to outreach@cs.umass.edu.