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In memoriam: Morven Gentleman

Tuesday, December 18, 2018

The following in memoriam appeared originally in the Daily Bulletin on Tuesday, December 18, 2018

Former faculty member William Morven Gentleman died on December 13, 2018.

Morven Gentleman joined the University of Waterloo in July 1969 as an Assistant Professor in the Department of Applied Analysis and Computer Science (now the David R. Cheriton School of Computer Science) and later the Department of Statistics. He was later promoted to Associate Professor.

His fields of interest included numerical analysis, programming languages, statistics and computer networks.

photo of Professor William Morven GentlemanIn 1974, Professor Gentleman was part of a faculty–student team from the computer science department that developed a special version of the APL programming language, which the University exchanged with Honeywell in return for $250,000 worth of auxiliary equipment for the University's Honeywell 6050 computer. This specialized APL language gave the Honeywell 6000 series a capability for statistical work that previously had not existed.

Professor Gentleman was Associate Chair of the Department of Computer Science from 1974 to 1976.

He was the first director of the University of Waterloo Mathematics Faculty Computing Facility (MFCF), where he established the Software Development Group that served as an important training ground for many who subsequently worked in the Canadian computing industry.

In 1980, Professor Gentleman was appointed University Computing Officer, a role that involved maintaining communications with all units on campus engaged in the use of computers, and advising the Vice-President, Academic on all matters concerning computing at the University.

photo of Professor William Morven Gentleman

Professor Gentleman left the University of Waterloo in June 1984.

Professor Gentleman then moved to the National Research Council in Ottawa. He also served as director of the Consortium for Graduate Studies in Software Engineering (ConGESE), and co-led, with Dr. Jacob Slonim, the establishment of a Consortium for Software Engineering Research (CSER) that included universities from across Canada.

In 2000, Professor Gentleman joined the Faculty of Computer Science at Dalhousie University as the director for the new Global Information Networking Institute (GINI). During this time he also served as a professor of computer science and taught a course in industrial engineering.

A memorial gathering is being planned for spring 2019.

We invite everyone who knew Professor Morven Gentleman to share their memories of him with his daughter, Professor Wendy Gentleman.

Professor Gentleman retired from Dalhousie University ten years ago. In honour of his achievements and in his memory, Dalhousie is raising funds for a scholarship in Professor Gentleman's name.