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The Richard A. Tapia Achievement Award for Scientific Scholarship, Civic Science, and Diversifying Computing award recognizes an individual with outstanding achievements in scientific scholarship, a strong civic presence within the scientific community, and a dedication to the attainment of true ethnic diversity in computing and related disciplines.

The recipient of the award is devoted to the principle of equity in both theory and practice, and demonstrates leadership in applying creative solutions to the difficult social, cultural, technical and political problems of diversifying computing.

This year, the award will be presented to Dr. Carlos Castillo-Chavez at the 2003 Richard Tapia Celebration of Diversity in Computing conference, taking place October 15-18, 2003 in Atlanta, Georgia. Dr. Carlos Castillo-Chavez is Professor of Biomathematics in the Department of Biological Statistics and Computational Biology and Theoretical and Applied Mechanics at Cornell University.

  The research of Carlos Castillo-Chavez involves the use of dynamical systems, stochastic processes and computational approaches in the study of questions arising in the fields of ecology and evolutionary biology, epidemiology, demography, social dynamics, population dynamics, and homeland security.

The research is driven by the role that social and population structure has on the dynamics of specific diseases including HIV/AIDS (impact of behavior, long periods of infectiousness, variable infectivity, co-infections, prostitution, social networks, vaccine efficacy and parameter estimation), influenza, tuberculosis (impact of exogeneous infection, variable progression rates, vaccination, public transportantion, generalized households), Chagas disease (control) and foot and mouth disease (Uruguay). He is currently working on the impact of the deliberate release of biological agents into the environment.

Dr. Castillo-Chavez has received numerous awards for his research, outreach and mentorship work, including two White House Awards (1992 and 1997), a QEM Mathematics, Science and Engineering Network 200 Giants in Science Award, and the 2001 Distinguished Scientist Award from the Society for the Advancement of Chicanos, Latinos, and Native Americans in Science (SACNAS). He was recognized by his alma mater, the University of Wisconsin at Stevens Point as a distinguished alumnus in 1999. The Center for Nonlinear Studies at Los Alamos National Laboratory has named him the 2003 Stanislaw M. Ulam Distinguished Scholar.

At Cornell, he is the Director of the Mathematical and Theoretical Biology Institute (MTBI) which provides research opportunities to about thirty-two undergraduate students each summer, particularly to students from underrepresented groups and nonselective universities. MTBI has also provided research opportunities to students and faculty from developing countries and to minority US graduate students.

He has co-authored or edited five books and about one hundred articles since he joined the faculty at Cornell in 1988.