​GÉANT pays tribute to 2017 Community Award winners

community_awards_banner.jpgThree GÉANT Community Awards were presented to winners during the opening plenary session of this year's networking conference, TNC17, in Linz, Austria: to Hannah Short, Massimo Parovel and jointly to Tomasz Wolniewicz and Maja Górecka-Wolniewicz. 

The 2017 Community Awards were presented on behalf of the panel of judges by Christian Grimm – chair of the GÉANT Board of Directors – and Christian Panigl – host of TNC17 and chair of the TNC17 Programme Committee. A live stream of the ceremony was available and an archived version will be online shortly.

Dedicated service

Although the community awards have always made provision for joint winners, this is the first time in the awards' history that winners have shared a prize. 

tomasz_maja_large.jpgTomasz Wolniewicz and Maja Górecka-Wolniewicz together 'significantly contributed to many collaborative activities throughout several years' with their work on the eduGAIN service infrastructure, the eduroam CAT tool and other community collaboration activities. Their work for the GÉANT community is supported by an agreement between their principal employer, Nicolaus Copernicus University in Toruń, Poland, and PSNC, the Polish NREN. Although Tomasz has become the university's CIO in recent years, he has continued to maintain his commitment to the community work unabated. As the 'front man' Tomasz is well-known in the community, but Maja is known to be doing a lot of the technical work behind the scenes, and together "they are a strong team working very productively", said Valter Nordh. "It is a good time for us to say thank you for this commitment from them both." 

"We are very honoured being selected for the GEANT Community Award. We realise that our community has a lot of very talented people who have made huge contributions to our common cause. This makes this award even more valuable to us. Over the years, there have been many people we have cooperated with and whose support has to a large extent enabled our work. It is impossible to name them all, however we would like to give our very special thanks to Stefan Winter and Ann Harding." Tomasz Wolniewicz and Maja Górecka-Wolniewicz​

Fresh blood

hannah_short_large.jpgWhile GÉANT greatly values the stalwart members of the community, it is always looking for 'fresh blood' to help work towards the future. As a relative newcomer to our community, Hannah Short fits that bill. From the IT Department at CERN, Hannah has been coordinating collaborative efforts across the REFEDS and AARC project communities on the development of a Security Incident Response Trust Framework for Federated Identity – 'Sirtfi' [pron: certify]. This enables the coordination of incident response across federated organisations and is a significant security development for the community. With three nominations for the award, Hannah has proved "a very valuable addition" to the community, the judges said. They commended her in the category of 'significant contributions to important developments within the past 12 months'.

"Thank you. I feel very humbled and lucky to have joined an activity with excellent people who work very hard and are a pleasure to interact with. Thanks to the Sirtfi adopters, supporters and even the critics who have made the last 12 months enjoyable and meaningful." Hannah Short

Artistic link

massimo_parovel_large.jpgThanks to Massimo Parovel's idea, musicians, dancers, actors and other performing artists are able to interact in a natural way even if they are located thousands of kilometres apart.

The low latency audio-visual system known as LOLA exploits the high-quality and very large bandwidth connectivity offered by research and education networks so that lessons, auditions, master-classes and performances can take place across great distances without network-related delay and variations. With the support of the 'Tartini' Conservatory of Music, Trieste, and Consortium GARR in Italy, LOLA has become available worldwide. The system has proved itself with "a series of spectacular demonstrations" on many occasions, including GÉANT's networking conferences, TNC, and is a particularly apt winner at TNC17 in Linz, which is a designated UNESCO city of Media Arts. The panel of judges said: "If Massimo is the mastermind behind LOLA he definitely deserves an award!" His award was in the category 'sharing an idea with the community that led to a significant development over time.'

"LoLa became possible  by the lucky combination of three factors: a simple but ambitious idea; a group of open minded experts with whom I shared this ambitious idea to turn it into a viable project; an adequate technology underneath. Without this technology – which we all create and share in this conference –  LoLa would have remained a dream.  And the very first idea of LoLa would never have blossomed without my personal  combination of passion and interests in different disciplines, from music to  technology to science... a passion shared also by my unique fellows in this  adventure: the team of experts who believed in my idea and made it real:  Paolo  Pachini, Carlo Drioli, Nicola Buso and Stefano Bonetti from  Music Conservatory  Tartini and Enzo Valente, Claudio Allocchio and the whole GARR staff, who  supported the idea I shared with them." Massimo Parovel

Further information

With the Community Awards GÉANT honours people who have contributed significant ideas, time and expertise to the development of the research and education networking community's collaborative achievements, and recognises that these contributions are often provided voluntarily and through the good will of employer organisations.

In addition to Christian Grimm and Christian Panigl, this year's panel of judges included Valter Nordh, Chair of the GÉANT Community Committee.

See the overview of all winners and the CONNECT magazine article.

Nicolaus Copernicus University in Toruń
CERN IT Department
Tartini Music Conservatory, Trieste