Luis von Ahn, Tom Moran Honored With Alumni Achievement Awards

Monday, October 18, 2021 - by Aaron Aupperlee

SCS grads Luis von Ahn and Tom Moran have received Alumni Achievement Awards for their exceptional accomplishments and leadership.

Two School of Computer Science graduates have received Alumni Achievement Awards for their exceptional accomplishments and leadership.

Luis von Ahna 2003 and 2005 SCS graduate, invented reCAPTCHA, a security feature to protect websites and applications from fraud and abuse. He also co-founded Duolingo, the world’s most popular language learning program. He was named a MacArthur Fellow, one of the 10 Most Brilliant Scientists by Popular Science magazine and among the 100 Most Innovative People in Business by Fast Company magazine. Von Ahn is a consulting professor in the Computer Science Department.

Tom Moran, a 1974 SCS graduate, pioneered the creation of the field of human-computer interaction. He has been a technology leader at Xerox Palo Alto Research Center (PARC), where he led research teams in novel applications, work practice studies and collaborative systems. He started and was director of a new PARC laboratory in Cambridge, England, before moving to IBM Research as a distinguished engineer. Moran founded the Human-Computer Interaction journal and served as editor for 30 years. Moran and his wife, Lydia, established the Thomas and Lydia Moran Career Development Professorship in Learning Science in 2019.

"The CMU Alumni Awards celebrate the pride of being a Tartan, of the achievement and commitment that CMU alumni carry with them throughout their lives and careers,” said Chris Stengel, CMU Alumni Association Board president and a School of Computer Science and Tepper School of Business alumnus. “I’m so proud to honor these accomplished alumni who are examples of what a CMU education can do, and who are blazing the trails for future generations of Tartans." 

Von Ahn and Moran will be honored on November 4 during the 71st annual CMU Alumni Awards, a special virtual event that is open to all.

Nominations for next year's Alumni Awards are open. More information on the nomination process is available from the University Advancement office.