Congratulations Keith Alcock on Your 2021 UA Award for Excellence!

April 6, 2021

Keith Alcock, Systems Programmer in Computer Science was invited to yet another zoom meeting when he heard there were special visitors with an important announcement.  Our Surprise Patrol then informed the meeting they were there to let him know he had been chosen from the Best of the Best to receive the 2021 UA Award for Excellence!  There were many wonderful things said by his nominators including: Keith is loved by every student in the CLULab as a great and well knowledgeable mentor who is ready to help you each and every time you need help.  Keith has extensive engineering experience and technical skills. He’s always resourceful to colleagues in the computer science department. He is always happy to help others, dig into issues and come up with solutions. He is a humble, warm person who is a real pleasure to work with. He is the best programmer I have worked with in my career. Beyond his strength as a programmer, Keith is doing a fantastic job at reaching out and helping everybody involved with our lab, from students that are just starting with the lab to long term collaborators that rely on our software. In the period he has been with our lab, Keith has become the fundamental glue that holds all our software efforts together.  Keith has streamlined our software efforts considerably by taking the pain of creating professional software that researchers in our lab can focus on pure research. Notably, Keith has fixed multiple software bugs (system crashes, memory leaks) in DyNet (, one of the most widely used NLP library for training neural networks. I believe his contributions impact the efforts of thousands of NLP researchers and other domain experts worldwide. In his calm and modest way Keith is improving the professional lives of many people, both on campus and outside.  Congratulations Keith on the well deserved recognition!