San Francisco, CA - The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) will hold its 13th Annual Pioneer Awards presentation at 6:30 p.m. on April 22nd at the Chabot Space and Science Center in Oakland, California, in conjunction with the 2004 Computers, Freedom & Privacy (CFP) conference. The online civil liberties group chose to honor Kim Alexander, David Dill, and Aviel Rubin for spearheading and nurturing the popular movement for integrity and transparency in modern elections.
Since 1991, the EFF Pioneer Awards have recognized individuals who have made significant and influential contributions to the development of computer-mediated communications or to the empowerment of individuals in using computers and the Internet.
"I'm so pleased to be able to give this recognition to Kim, David, and Avi. Like many others who often go unrecognized, they have been doing incredibly important work to protect our democracy while using technology," said EFF Executive Director Shari Steele. "I'm proud that EFF is able to honor a few of these generally unsung heroes with our yearly Pioneer Awards."
Kim Alexander is president of the California Voter Foundation (CVF), a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization she started in 1994 to advance new technologies to improve democracy.
Over the past decade, Alexander has led pioneering efforts to develop the Internet into an effective tool for voter education and campaign finance disclosure in California and beyond. Her interest in democracy and technology led her to become involved with voting technology, and she has since become one of the nation's leading voices for secure and verifiable computerized voting systems.
In 1999 she served on California's Internet Voting Task Force, which in 2000 issued the first comprehensive study of Internet voting security and concluded that the Internet was not yet a safe place for securely transacting ballots. In 2003, she served on the California Secretary of State's Ad Hoc Touch Screen Voting Task Force. The task force report included a minority opinion of which Alexander was a co-author. The California Secretary of State adopted the opinion, and as a result, California is the first state in the nation to require that electronic voting machines provide a voter-verified paper trail.
David Dill is a Professor of Computer Science at Stanford University with a primary research focus on the theory and application of formal verification techniques to system designs, including hardware, protocols, and software.
In 2003, he turned a critical eye to electronic voting systems, founding VerifiedVoting.org to champion transparent and publicly verifiable elections. The VerifiedVoting.org website educates the public about the problem with relying upon electronic voting machines to record and count our votes without the backup of a voter-verifiable audit trail; points to reasonable solutions that are within reach; and provides a list of actions voters can take, encouraging them to act on their own behalf to ensure that their votes are counted in future elections.
Dill served on the California Secretary of State's Ad Hoc Committee on Touch Screen Voting, and joined Kim Alexander in successfully advocating for voter-verified paper audit trails. He also serves on the IEEE P1583 voting standards committee, and is a member of the DRE Citizen's Oversight Committee for Santa Clara County, California.
Aviel Rubin is Professor of Computer Science and Technical Director of the Information Security Institute at Johns Hopkins University.
Rubin led the effort to expose security flaws in Diebold computer-based voting systems, combining technical skill and articulation to the public in such a way that his solid technical work could not be ignored by those who would prefer an insecure status quo.
In 2003, Rubin co-authored a report on Diebold that focused a national spotlight on the integrity of electronic voting machines. He also co-authored an analysis of the government's planned SERVE system for Internet voting for military and overseas civilians, which led to the cancellation of that dangerous project.
Rubin is author and co-author of several books on information security, serves as Associate Editor of ACM Transactions on Internet Technology, and is a member of the advisory board of Springer's Information Security and Cryptography Book Series. He is also a member of the board of directors of the USENIX Association and serves on the DARPA Information Science and Technology Study Group.
The judges for this year's EFF Pioneer Awards were: Herb Brody (Senior Editor, Technology Review), Beth Givens (Founder and Director of the Privacy Rights Clearinghouse), Moira Gunn (Host, "Tech Nation," National Public Radio), Donna Hoffman (Associate Professor of Management, Vanderbilt University), Peter Neumann (Principal Scientist, SRI Intl.; Moderator, ACM Risks Forum), Drazen Pantic (Media & Tech. Director, NYU Center for War, Peace & the News Media), Barbara Simons (past President, Association for Computing Machinery & U.C. Berkeley Distinguished Alumnus), and Karen Schneider (Director, Librarians' Index to the Internet).
Prior Pioneer Award recipients include Tim Berners-Lee, Linus Torvalds, and Vinton Cerf, among many others.
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For more information about the EFF Pioneer Awards:
For details about the 2004 CFP conference:
Director of Education and Offline Activism
Electronic Frontier Foundation
The Electronic Frontier Foundation is the leading civil liberties organization working to protect rights in the digital world. Founded in 1990, EFF actively encourages and challenges industry and government to support free expression and privacy online. EFF is a member-supported organization and maintains one of the most linked-to websites in the world at https://www.eff.org/