Dear MBDH Community,

I wanted to officially introduce myself as the new PI of the Midwest Big Data Hub. In a previous MBDH newsletter, it was announced that I would be taking over the role after the former PI, Dr. Ed Seidel, accepted the job of Vice President for Economic Development and Innovation for the University of Illinois System. It is with great enthusiasm that I join the MBDH community, and I’m eager to contribute to all the ways the Hub is expanding and enhancing the Midwest Big Data ecosystem.

A brief introduction: I joined the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign faculty in 2007, and currently hold the Thomas M. Siebel Chair in Computer Science. I have also served as NCSA’s chief scientist since 2015 and am co-principal investigator of Blue Waters, NSF’s leadership computing system. A more extensive background can be found on the NCSA website.

I’m excited by the opportunities that the Hub offers for advancing data science and the national data ecosystem, particularly in partnership with our stakeholder communities, the spokes, affiliated projects, and the other Regional Big Data Hubs. Among my goals are ensuring that the Hub provides the support needed for both existing and new projects to succeed, and developing a plan for sustaining the Hub’s activities.

As the PI of the MBDH, I’ll work with MBDH leadership to provide the strategic vision that best leverages the strengths of the Midwest to further the mission of the Hub. The MBDH is in a unique position to connect experts from all across the Midwest to tackle challenges, accelerate innovation, and to highlight all of the incredible work being done.

I look forward to working closely with MBDH leadership and continuing their great work.

William Gropp
Director, NCSA
Thomas M. Siebel Chair in Computer Science
University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign