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Vinton Gray Cerf Edit Profile

technology executive , Computer scientist

Vinton Gray Cerf, American Telecommunications company executive. Named to Datamation Hall of Fame, 1989; recipient Kilby award, 1995, Silver medal International Telecomms. Union, 1995, Industry Legend award Computer and Communications Industries Association, 1996, Nippon Electric Corporation Computer and Comm. prize, 1996, Computer Networks and Smithsonian Leadership award, 1996, National Medal of Technology, 1997; Marioni fellow, 1998.


Cerf, Vinton Gray was born on June 23, 1943 in New Haven. Son of Vinton Thruston and Muriel (Gray) Cerf.


Bachelor of Science in Mathematics, Stanford University, California, 1965. Master of Science in Computer Science, University of California at Los Angeles, 1970. Doctor of Philosophy in Computer Science, University of California at Los Angeles, 1972.

Doctor of Philosophy (honorary), Capitol College, Maryland. Doctor of Philosophy (honorary), Gettysburg College, Pennsylvania. Doctor of Philosophy (honorary), University Balearic Islands, Palma.

Doctor of Philosophy (honorary), Lulea Institute of Technology, Sweden. Doctor of Philosophy (honorary), Swiss Federal Institute of Technology, Zurich. Doctor of Philosophy (honorary), George Mason University, Virginia.

Doctor of Philosophy (honorary), University Twente, The Netherlands. Doctor of Philosophy (honorary), Rovira & Virgili University, Spain. Doctor of Philosophy (honorary), University Pisa.

Doctor of Philosophy (honorary), Tschingua University. Doctor of Philosophy (honorary), University Beijing. Doctor of Philosophy (honorary), Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, New York.


Systems engineer International Business Machines Corporation Corporation, 1965-1967. Principal programmer University of California at Los Angeles, 1967-1972. Assistant professor electrical engineering and computer science Stanford University, 1972-1976.

Program manager information processing techniques office, Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, United States Department Defense, Arlington, Virginia, 1976—1981, principal scientist, 1981-1982. Director system development MCI Communications Corporation, 1982-1983, vice president engineering, MCI Digital Information Services Company Washington, 1983-1986, senior vice president architecture and technical, then senior vice president technology strategy, 1994—2005. Vice president Corporation National Research Initiatives, Reston, 1986-1994.

Vice president, chief internet evangelist Google Inc., Mountain View, California, since 2005. Senior programmer Jacobi Systems Corporation, Santa Monica, California, 1968—1970. Member United States Presidential Information Technology Advisory Committee, 1997—2001.

Board directors Internet Corporation Assigned Names & Numbers (ICANN), 1999—2007, ClearSight Systems Corporation, Avanex Corporation. Visiting scientist National Aeronautics and Space Administration Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, California.


  • Achievements include recognition as one of the 'fathers of the Internet' for design of the TCP/Intellectual Property protocols and the architecture of the Internet. While working at MCI Communications Corporation, led the engineering of MCI Mail, the first commercial email service to be connected to the Internet.


Fellow: National Academy of Engineering (Charles Stark Draper award 2001), American Association for the Advancement of Science, Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (Koji Kobayashi award 1992, Alexander Graham Bell award 1997, Third Millennium medal), Association Women in Science, American Academy Arts & Sciences, Association Computing Machinery (Software & Systems award, SIGCOMM award, Turing award 2004), Society Technology Communications (honorary). Member: Internet Society (founding president 1992-1995), Yale Political Union (honorary).


Married Sigrid L. Thorstenberg, September 10, 1966. Children: David, Bennett.

Vinton Thruston Cerf

Muriel (Gray) Cerf

Sigrid L. Thorstenberg

David Cerf

Bennett Cerf