Atanasoff Today: Incoming and Outgoing

Farewell to Faculty

Les Miller, professor emeritus of computer science, recently retired after a lengthy career of innovative research, mentorship, teaching and service. Miller arrived at Iowa State University in 1984 as an assistant professor and progressed through the department to full tenure, even serving as chair. He earned grants and contracts from funders such as the National Science Foundation, the U.S. National Security Agency, John Deere and IBM. His work appears in publications such as the International Journal of Information and Computer Security and the Journal of Systems and Software. Miller still contributes to the field as a member or leader of organizations such as the International Society for Computers and their Applications and a member of both the European and National Academy of Sciences.

“In my early years at ISU, Les taught me as much as anyone about the ropes of academia, the stuff you don’t learn in your coursework,” said Jack Lutz, professor of computer science. “I served for years on the graduate committee, which he chaired, and he taught me - often via his inexhaustible store of anecdotes - the importance of grounding decisions in solid scholarly principles.”

Also retired is Shashi Gadia, associate professor emeritus of computer science and faculty member since 1986. His research roots run deep in fundamental computer science, especially databases. His work has appeared in publications from around the world, such as Applied Computing and Informatics, International Journal of Computer Systems, Sciences and Engineering and the International Journal of Database Management Systems. His extensive service includes leadership roles in undergraduate studies, curriculum instruction and committees ranging from promotion and tenure to sustainability.

“I cherish the time spent with Professor Gadia to sort out many administrative issues together in the department during my tenure as the chair,” said Carl Chang, professor of computer science. “He was always available to me with great patience. We shall miss a wonderful colleague and an outstanding academic advisor.”

Do you have a fond memory about Professor Gadia or Miller? 

Share it on the department’s Facebook page and wish them well.


Research in the Department of Computer Science spans the fundamentals of computation through machine learning, robotics and other applied technologies. Our faculty, graduate students and even some undergraduate students are expanding the science of computing among interdisciplinary teams at Iowa State, and are collaborating with computer science leaders around the globe.

Some larger grants secured in the past year include:

HDR TRIPODS: D4 (Dependable Data-Driven Discovery) Institute

Faculty: Hridesh Rajan (PI), Pavan Aduri (Co-PI), Chinmay Hegde (Co-PI), Daniel Nettleton (Co-PI), Eric Weber (Co-PI), Kevin Liu (Co-PI), Michael J. Catanzaro (Co-PI), Namrata Vaswani (Co-PI), Vinodchandran Variyam (Co-PI), Li Wang (Co-PI), and Zhengyuan Zhu (Co-PI)

Funding amount: $1,499,994

Funder: National Science Foundation, 2019 – 2023

Foundations of Software Testing Representations of Natural Processes

Faculty: Myra Cohen (PI) and James Lathrop (Co-PI) Funding: $499,961

Funder: National Science Foundation, 2019 – 2022

Rapid Evolution of Influenza A Viruses in Swine Results in Zoonotic Viruses with Human Pandemic Potential

Faculty: Oliver Eulenstein

Funding amount: $501,761

Funder: Department of Defense-Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), 2020 – 2021

Design for Dependability in Systems of Molecular Programs

Faculty: Robyn Lutz (PI), James Lathrop (Co-PI), and Jack Lutz (Co-PI)

Funding amount: $800,000

Funder: National Science Foundation, 2019 – 2023


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