University of Texas at Austin Department of Computer SciencesDepartment of Computer Science
The University of Texas at Austin

Biographical Sketch

Simon S. Lam is Professor and Regents Chair in Computer Science at the University of Texas at Austin. He received the BSEE degree with Distinction from Washington State University, Pullman, in 1969, and the M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in engineering from UCLA in 1970 and 1974, respectively.

From 1971 to 1974, he was a Postgraduate Research Engineer at the ARPA Network Measurement Center, UCLA, where he worked on packet switching techniques for satellite and radio channels. From 1974 to 1977, he was a Research Staff Member at the IBM T. J. Watson Research Center, Yorktown Heights, New York. Since 1977, he has been on the faculty of the University of Texas at Austin. He served as Department Chair from 1992 to 1994. His current research interests are in computer network protocol design, Internet security services, protocol verification, and performance analysis.

Professor Lam was elected to the National Academy of Engineering in 2007 with the citation, ''For contributions to computer network protocols and network security services.''

He is a co-recipient of the 2004 Software System Award from ACM with the citation, "For inventing secure sockets and prototyping the first secure sockets layer (named SNP - Secure Network Programming) as a high-level abstraction suitable for securing Internet applications."

He received the 2004 SIGCOMM Award from ACM for lifetime contributions to the field of communications networks with the citation "in recognition of his vision, breadth, and rigor in contributing to, among other areas: secure network communication, the analysis of network and multiaccess protocols, the analysis of queueing networks, and the design of mechanisms for quality of service."

He received the 2004 W. Wallace McDowell Award from IEEE Computer Society with the citation, "For outstanding fundamental contributions in network protocols and security services."

He is a co-recipient of the 1975 Leonard G. Abraham Prize in the field of communications systems and the 2001 William R. Bennett Prize in the field of communications networking from IEEE Communications Society. He is an IEEE Fellow (elected 1985) and an ACM Fellow (elected 1998).  He is a member of the Academy of Medicine, Engineering and Science of Texas (elected 2007).  He received a Teaching Excellence Award form the College of Natural Sciences in 2007. 

Professor Lam was Editor-in-Chief of IEEE/ACM Transactions on Networking from 1995 to 1999.  He served on the editorial boards of IEEE/ACM Transactions on Networking, Computer Networks, IEEE Transactions on Software Engineering, IEEE Transactions on Communications, Proceedings of the IEEE, and Performance Evaluation.  He co-founded the ACM SIGCOMM conference in 1983 and the IEEE International Conference on Network Protocols in 1993.

Personal   Simon S. Lam was born in Macau in 1947 with the family name and the given name 善成 (Lam Sin Sing or Lam Shin Sing).   He moved with his family to Hong Kong in 1959.  He attended La Salle College, Kowloon, Hong Kong from 1961 to 1966.  He passed the Hong Kong English School Certificate Examination in 1965 and was awarded a Hong Kong Government Scholarship.  He took the University of London G.C.E. Examination in 1966 and left Hong Kong on September 7, 1966 on his way to attend Washington State University, Pullman, Washington.  He met his wife, Amy, in 1969 at UCLA.  They have one child, Eric.

Last updated, 1/16/2018